Jo Hisaishi (born December 6, 1950 in Nagano) is a Japanese composer and musical director known for over 100 film scores and solo albums dating back to 1981. While possessing a stylistically distinct sound, Hisaishi’s music has been known to explore and incorporate different genres, including minimalist, experimental electronic, European classical, and Japanese classical. He was a student of legendary anime composer Takeo Watanabe.
Hisaishi has been associated with animator Hayao Miyazaki since 1984, having composed scores for all his films. For example Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind (1983), Princess Mononoke (1997 or Spirited Away (2002). He is also recognized for the soundtracks he has provided for filmmaker ‘Beat’ Takeshi Kitano, including Sonatine (1993), Hana-bi (1997) and Dolls (2002), as well for the video game series Ni no Kuni. Lesser known are the other musical roles he plays; he is also a typesetter, author, arranger and conductor.
Joe Hisaishi is just a pseudonym. He was born as Mamoru Fujisawa. He chose his artistic name by musician and producer Quincy Jones. In Japanese, „Quincy“ pronounced „Kuishi“ is close to the Japanese pronunciation of „Hisaishi“. And Joe is shorter version of Jones.