Ryuichi Sakamoto Hopes for "Last Moment in Kyoto"Temporarily Possessed Bowie-Related Land
Ryuichi Sakamoto, a musician who is active worldwide, revealed that he was planning to move to Kyoto City from New York, USA, where he has lived for a long time, in an interview with the Kyoto Shimbun Co., Ltd. The location is Kujoyama in Yamashina Ward, where the late David Bowie's residence once was. Sakamoto and Bowie acted together in the film "Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence." Sakamoto purchased a piece of land in 2013, but he was diagnosed with cancer in the following year and sold it then. He spoke of an emotional attachment to Kyoto, saying, "I want to spend the last years of my life in Kyoto."
■Plans Abandoned due to Cancer Treatment
Sakamoto, who has lived in New York for nearly 30 years, was thinking to come back to Japan around his 60th birthday, an auspicious age called "Kanreki." Although he was born and raised in Tokyo, he said, "it had lost its appeal" so he was seeking property in Kyoto, where many of his artist and scholar acquaintances reside, and he had found a property in Kujoyama.
That land was previously the residence of the late David Kidd, oriental-style artist, whom Bowie visited frequently. Sakamoto purchased it, explaining, "I knew that Bowie visited there. Some acquaintances also live in the neighborhood, so it felt like a turn of fate." He asked an architect of his acquaintance to draw up a plan and they were actually putting the finishing touches on a draft of house design. However, he was diagnosed with oropharyngeal cancer in 2014, and changed his focus to his cancer treatment.
In 2015, he returned to work in the film music genre, including the film "Haha to Kuraseba" or "Nagasaki: Memories of My Son." Last year, he completed an album for the first time in eight years. He said, "Kyoto has rich forests and water, and delicious food. I will live in New York for the time being, but I want to fulfill my plan of moving to Kyoto."(Translated by Mie Hiuzon, Psyche et l’Amour, Inc.)