Five days have already gone by since TAIJI passed away.
I still haven’t processed it…I’m bewildered by this sudden parting that nobody expected,
and also incredibly sad.

TAIJI was an overwhelmingly talented player who was the highest grade of musician.
I respected his transcendent groove from the bottom of my heart.
Losing him is a heavy blow to the Japanese rock scene,
since he was a genius bassist that Japan could be proud of.

In recent years TAIJI had been constantly struggling with illness,
and his life was certainly not easy.
Yet he was always very humble, and he never lost his passion for music.
When we stood together on stage at Nissan Stadium last year,
his groove and presence were truly amazing.

This parting came too fast, and I still haven’t come to terms with it.
But there is one thing I can say,
as my friends keep departing on their journeys for the other side
and now that so many people have lost their lives in the earthquake:
those of us who are still living should feel heartfelt gratitude for our lives.
Those of us who are still living must not waste the lives we have left.

I would also like to say to everyone that I want them to keep living on…
to be thankful for everything, including their life, family, and friends.
Your life does not just belong to you; people love you and need you.
People should live their lives while feeling in their hearts the reason for and miracle of being alive.
And people should absolutely not take their own lives,
since there are many people who love them and are always together with them.

TAIJI was loved and needed by many people, yet he took his own life.
This is a very sorrowful thing.

From the bottom of my heart,
I pray that TAIJI – who was a masterful musician and fantastic rocker – will rest in peace
and find happiness in the next world.

Rest in Peace & Fly Away….. My Friends,

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