Biography

By Michael Huang

He's been called the John Williams of the video game world, and the description is apt.  Born in Kouchi City Japan on March 21, 1959.  Nobuo started playing the piano at the age of 12 and has never been formerly taught.  By his own admition, he said he wanted to learn to play the piano because he wanted to be like Elton John.

After finishing high school, Nobuo graduated from University of Kanagawa and his major was suprisingly not music!  When Nobuo turned 22, he joined many amantuer bands as a keyboard player, but he discover that he love writing music more then playing, so he decided to pursuit a career as a composer and sent out many demo tapes to many companies.  One of them finally hired him to write some music for radio CM.

In 1985, one of Nobuo's friend, who was working at a video game company called Squaresoft, asked Nobuo if he wanted to write music for some of their video game and the rest is history.

In his spare time, Nobuo enjoys listening to Irish music, watching Japanese pro wrestling, drink/make beer and learn how to play the Fiddle.

Nobuo left squaresoft in 2004 to form his own production company 'smile please', and is still very much active as a free lance composer in the game/film industry .

P.S. - If any of you are interested in writing to Mr. Uematsu, you may do so by clicking here.

Trivia

-His wife's name is Reiko.

- Has an older sister.

- He record label is Dog Ear Records.

- Heads Square-Enix's Uematsu Productions (2002 - 2004).

- Heads his own production company 'Smile Please' (2004 - present).

- Worked at a video rental company prior to working at square and in fact continue to work at the video rental company part time during the early days of working at square.

- First game he worked on was Blasty for the PC.

- Part of reason he first accepted working at squaresoft was to earn enough money to be able to propose to his future wife.

- Did not receive any royalties payments from any of the soundtrack CDs sold during final fantasy I XI.

- Does not own the rights to any of the music he has written during his time of employment with Squaresoft.

- Among other reason he left squaresoft was due to the fact that Square moved their office from Meguro to Shinjuku and he did not like the environment in Shinjuku.

- In the 2004 Summer Olympics, the United States synchronized swimming duet of Alison Bartosik and Anna Kozlova won the bronze medal using two of his pieces from Final Fantasy VIII in the second half of their routine. (Youtube video linke)

- Has a beagle dog named Pao.

- Named as one of the "Innovators" in Time Magazine's "Time 100: The Next Wave - Music" feature.

- His theme song to Final Fantasy 8, "Eyes on me", won "Song of the Year (Western Music)" at the 14th Annual Japan Gold Disc Awards in 1999.

- Took over composing for "Chrono Trigger" when Yasunori Mitsuda contracted stomach ulcers.

- His composition "theme of love" from Final Fantasy 4 was used in a Japanese piano music book intended for grade schooler music students.

- His favorite FF battle song is One Winged Angel from FF7.

- Formed a recorder quartet group.