Being raised in a rather strict family and never really having watched TV in his childhood except for educational programs, he came a
long way from the boy listening to Bon Jovi on borrowed cassette tapes and
singing covers of Kurt Cobain songs to being the accomplished international musician he was later.
After buying his first CD, Metallica's "...Justice For All", it was basically the song "One" which inspired him to play the guitar. He started to learn it
with getting lessons from an older friend in the neighbourhood who had a band. He payed for the lessons with working as a roadie for them.
In junior high and high school years he formed various bands, playing in sessions at first and later in live houses around the area.
Feeling restricted by the rules and regulations of the Japanese school system he decided to go to America.
So, after graduating from Vocational School he went to New York alone. He had no knowledge in English and arrived with just one suitcase
and his guitar.
"I was truly starting from nothing but it's from nothing that you can be reborn." he said.
Studying English in language school with fellow students from all over the world, he went from the lowest to the highest level in three months only.
To attend the university he wanted, he needed a score of at least 550 in the TOEFL exam. After only getting about 300 on first try, he
went back to studying for another ten months and finally reached his goal.
He went to the Parsons School of Design to study music, art,
English and more. There he became an excellent guitarist, being able to play all kinds of different styles like classical, jazz or rock.
He was also able to play in many sessions there with all kinds of musicians, enjoying the more flexible and independent ways of
the music business in America.
After four years of studying and living in New york he returned to Japan one day after graduation and only one week later was hired by Yusuke Asada (U-SKE Asada), a famous producer and artist
who has performed with major label groups like Chara, produced video game and movie soundtracks and major artists like Crystal Kay.
He says about this time that it was his true beginning as a musician. During this time he also met Gackt who asked him to play as a guitarist
in GacktJob for his Mars Tour in 2000.
He continued his work there until spring 2002 when he decided to go independent and start his solo career as the front man in the band Spiky.
"I wanted to be able to grow as a composer in my own right, as well as being able to write lyrics and become a vocalist." he said.
They toured Japan and released eleven CDs until he left in the end of 2004. They held two final concerts in 2006 before officially disbanding.
In the beginning of 2005 masa then formed his very own band, DIZZY DRIVE, touring Japan and releasing a couple of demo CDs and one CD album.
In 2006 he felt it's time for evolution and radically changed the image and musical style of the band.
With the members still staying the same more or less, the band name was changed to マァマァサ☆ムゥ.
Sadly, just after having achieved national recognition and getting ready to a tour of Japan in
February 2007, their activities came to a screeching halt when masa was involved in a near
fatal traffic accident. After a long recovery time he resumed his work and returned on stage in October of the same year.
After some concerts, demo CDs and even a TV appearance masa finally decided to take a break for an indefinite period of time and so
マァマァサ☆ムゥ disbanded in March 2008.
He also played in various session lives covering Buck-Tick and LunaSea songs among others.
- Credits: Various sources online and the article about masa in the first issue of
Five For magazine (December 2007) which also features an interview