GEM Impact history1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11
In 1996, on the last year of Osaka University,
along with just a starting career as jazz sax player,
Hibino started to seek for a way to make himself living,
and applied for job interviews among all industries,
as most colleagues would do.
The best company for him and being accepted was a restaurant chain,
called "Gyoza no Ohsho",
because Hibino thought if he could run restaurant with live venue,
then he might be able to keep playing sax,
as in Osaka there were very few music job other than performance.
his parents and surroundings didn't accept his choice,
as they thought he could have taken much better job considering his academic records.
Hibino thought he had to prove himself he could survive in music,
and then he brought sax alone and left his home,
with leaving everything behind.
On the way he found his new job as truck driver,
and on the same day he decided his place to live nearby.
As the job was only from early morning to afternoon,
he could also be active as a sax player at night.
That's how he started his pursuit of "living with music".
Without any money and belongings,
he got lots of supports from musicians around him.
He also got to know that there are some other ways to make himself living with music,
such as composing, arranging.
Berklee College of Music offered him quite a big amount of scholarship,
and he could at least "start studying" at Berklee with his own savings.
due to lack of finances he needed to graduate in as short period as possible.
Jazz Composition major allowed him to graduate in 1 year and 3 months,
and he also added some classes such as music business and film scoring so he could absorb whatever he could in his short stay.
Though studying jazz composition arrangement,
Hibino found out "these horn arrangement technique could be applied in synthesizer,
then there'll be no limit of range and performance techniques!".
Hibino spent lots of time in synth lab,
where there was a early days of very costly pro tools and synthesizers.
He was luckily able to get in touch with those latest gears and found out possibility of electronic music.
Since his childhood,
he loved musical instrument,
and many times he dreamt he found his synthesizers and guitars in his storage.
He always thought he would be very happy if he could work surrounded by instruments,
and now this dream started to come true.
On graduating Berklee,
he had to face the reality that he has to support himself right away,
and he has to brush up his own English skills to be able to do it,
so he took job as a movie theater manager at Kansas City.
The company AMC was looking for an bilingual staff who could eventually open up Japan branch.
Through that experiences Hibino could learn a business of movie multiplex,
a mixture of theatrical business,
restaurant business,show business,
that gave him lots of insight about business management,
as well as American culture in business world.
Along with movie theater work,
he kept himself active as a performer.
After he moved to Fukuoka,
Japan to open up new theater,
he worked at theater from 8am-4pm then went to jazz club and perform,
and came back to house around 2-3am.
At that time,
Hibino found through his friend that Konami,
a game company is looking for a composer.
It was a time that people regarded game job as "second rated" performer's side work.
Konami was developing Metal Gear Solid 2 under playstation 2 environment,
and even they were thinking 5.1 surround orchestra recording.
What Hibino only knew was that Game company could buy those expensive gears he was using at Berklee for him.
That was really a dream for him.
What Konami asked him was to collaborate with Harry Gregson-Williams, a famous film composer,
and bring overall music quality up to hollywood movie level.
It was really an amazing and also a challenging start for him.
From 1999 to 2004,
he dedicated himself for bringing up game sound quality,
starting from "perfect copy" of hollywood sound track to anything to do with music,
such as contracting,
licensing, booking, mixing, mastering, surround…
By analyzing all stems from Harry,
Hibino was experimenting how those sound were created.
Through these experiences,
Hibino started to think "I wanted to use more acoustic instruments,
and contribute to my musician friends".
At that time it was hard to assure budget just for demo live recording in game company.
However, he thought that good musical performance with certain effects could be an essential element of arrangement,
that brought him to establish his own production company to handle whole music budgets and allocate them as necessary,
that resulted in cost savings and better quality as a whole.
In December 2004,
after release of Metal Gear Solid 3, he left Konami to establish his own company.
In Feb 2005,
GEM Impact started,
but without any projects coming in.
First work for them was creating "portfolio CD".
「one major label King Records helped us to release my own CD,
and Hibino created "Akashi" as a showcase of his various aspects.
However, CD wasn't sell well, and he recognized the difficulty and reality of record business.
That gave him a lot of insight about "cost management".
Sometimes things turn out in unexpected way.
Some fans of Metal Gear and game magazine editor found him out and spoke loud about his contribution to Metal Gear,
despite of most fan's perception as Metal Gear = Harry Gregson Williams.
That really helped GEM Impact to open up the door to the industry.
GEM Impact also had vocal instruction school,
even had a live venue called "vanilla mood Roppongi".
hanks to business experience at movie theater,
all these external business looked relatively successful.
However the reality was tough.
Too much work resulted in his car accident, braking family relationship,
leaving staff, money trouble…
Then Hibino started to realize,
"business cannot be just big and successful,
there should be a right size for it".
After all those troubles,
Hibino decided to close both vocal school and live venue, and came back to the mainstream,
as a composer and sound producer.
He decided to choose "internal peace" than "who is right, what is truth, success".
He felt like he completely lost all trust,
achievement in last couple of years.
However, a few people walked with him the recovering path regardless of all rumor and troubles.
He really thanked with those kindness and love.
After GEM Impact decided to go back to mainstream,
Hibino focused on "Pachinko" project,
an Japanese arcade machine.
At that time Pachinko has greatly improved its visual & sound quality.
Since GEM Impact composers are trained in surround environment,
hey know multi-layered sound making,
that helps to create strong sound that can be heard in very noisy environment where Pachinko machines are located.
Also, overseas networks network that Hibino had cultivated through last couple of years started to bear fruit.
People who he got to know at the conference became key person of GEM Impact's foreign business.
Hibino's close friend and ex-Gekidan Shiki member, Yoshiya Yamazaki, had a chance to discuss the reality of those musical actor's life, and payrate, etc.
The more Hibino heard about it, the stronger he wanted to do something with that situation.
Those actors are usually can dance, sing, voice-acting, and not only that, they are trained in show business world and have very good business manner.
Hibino thought they were so less regarded considering their talent, and their talent should be utilized more.
Then, Hibino started to record as many voice samples of them as possible.
One year later, voiceover services by stage actors has became one of the principle core of GEM Impact's business.
Hibino thinks, everyone has its own talent in some way, but most of them has not clearly recognized what that is.
Talent itself is given by Almighty, but there needs to be someone's help to enlighten, pour water, and make it grow.
That is something GEM Impact can do.
In 2008, Hibino Sound Therapy Lab (HSTL) has formed, aiming for providing whole music therapeutic experience from creation to transmission, utilizing Hibino's hi-resolution sound production experiences through years of worldwide video game soundtrack production.
Especially HSTL is now focusing on human's sound perception non-brain involved circumstance.
From recent studies and our experiment we think that sounds are transmitted through not only longitudinal wave but also through some kind of transverse wave (almost like electromagnetic wave), and this is more prominent in very high frequencies which human ear cannot detect.
Transverse wave directly goes into cell, and human may hear sound not only by ear but also by cell.
That is why this is very important when we think of receptive approach in music therapy, as if this is ear-brain involved it always becomes a matter of whether you like music or not, and there will never be a certain answer of musical effect.
Now we examine how we can apply this transverse wave production process in composing, performing, recording, mixing, mastering, and playback music.
n the beginning of our activity, Hibino thought He wanted to "save people with music", he brought his original special music playback system which allows high frequency transmission in transverse wave to elderly nursing home, and cancer patient at last stage.
However, he couldn't see good result with those experiment, cancer patient died, and that made him realize "music cannot save people".
Then, he came across with a wife's blog who lost her husband at hospice without any life-prolonging treatment.
She wrote about her experience of last 3 days with her husband, just shaking hands together and he went back to heaven in peace.
"There are various opinions about how a person should live, however, still in these days which we are allowed to have variety of lifestyle, the most essential things in life is "love"".
That made Hibino change the way to approach "music therapy" completely.
First of all, "healing people" is not our work, but Almighty God's work. Human's life is in His hands.
What we should do is, providing music with "love" so that people can live better life with it.
"Love" is, for those who think they can do everything on their own (or who think they have to do it), interfering, but for those who are in weak, loneliness, hunger, it is something they eagerly want even if they lose everything for that.
It would be more than happy if music can be a little help for it.