5 years ago, we were curious about what people thought about anime music. More specifically, we wanted to know what people thought of the people behind the music in anime, the composers who toiled in obscurity to deliver moods that heighten the emotions on screen. We wanted to know that of those composers, which ones you all loved most by letting us know and rank-ordering your favorites.
Well, you all responded, and how! We received an overwhelming number of responses that encompassed over 90 anime composers. When the dust cleared, the top 5 anime composers based on point totals were Yuki Kajiura, Yoko Kanno, Joe Hisaishi, Taku Iwasaki, and Kenji Kawai.
So do these selections represent a bygone era? Since then, the anime music landscape has changed significantly. A new crop of composers who were on the bubble back then have risen to become rousing successes. Other composers who dabbled in the medium dropped out, never to be heard from again. There still are veterans who continue to explore, experiment, or stick to their guns, but still write soundtracks that capture the attention of anime fans both old and new. And we want to know who your favorites are.
So here’s how this works. We’ve set up a poll accessible here or below this post. Your job will be to write in a minimum of 3 but up to 10 of your favorite anime composers. When I say anime composers, I mean any composer who’s written any music for anime (including OPs/EDs/insert songs). In terms of who you select, the extent to which you enjoy their music is the primary criterion for your list. You can also consider other things like their quantity of work they’ve done, but when you put together your list, rank order them from your favorite to tenth favorite. Easy enough. You’re also welcome to comment in this post by indicating who you chose, why, and which of their soundtracks you really really liked.
Lastly, do try to come up with ten. I specifically stress the word try, because it’s perfectly OK if you aren’t able to come up with that many. If you’re stuck, it does help to look through some of your favorite shows and see who composed their music. That’s totally fine.
Yes, I will use the results for an upcoming project and I realize that this method will not yield an objective measurement of who exactly are the ten best anime composers out there. But the results should be interesting either way. Do fill this out by December 1, 2015. I’ll be scattering reminders every so often!