In Remembrance Of Kōji Wada (1974–2016)

Kōji Wada’s official website has reported that the beloved singer, most famous for performing theme songs of every Digimon TV series and movie since the franchise’s animated debut in 1999, passed away on April 03 after a nearly thirteen-year battle with cancer. The 42-year-old artist had previously taken two major career hiatuses (once from 2003-2006, and another from 2011-2013) to focus on his health. The final song Mr. Wada ever recorded was a 2015 version of “Butter-Fly” (the debut song that kicked off his career in 1999), which currently serves as the opening theme for the ongoing Digimon Adventure Tri film series.

Chances are slim that you’d be reading this article on a Digimon fansite and not already have some sort of attachment to Kōji Wada and his work. As someone who has poured countless hours into this franchise’s music, it’s difficult for me to put into words how hard I’ve been hit by this news. This website is the biggest outlet I have for expressing my fandom, so I’m going to honor Mr. Wada in a way that best suits the purpose of Magic’s DiGiMONMUSiC Database: by informing.

First, I’ve updated the Digimon Adventure Tri section with an entry for Mr. Wada’s final CD single (released only days before his death).

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“Seven ~Tri. Version~” is a newly-arranged rendition of Mr. Wada’s second Digimon theme song (coupled with “Butter-Fly” on its original CD release in 1999). DREAMUSIC’s official listing for the single contains a disclaimer stating that Kōji Wada’s vocals for “Seven ~Tri. Version~” have been lifted from “Seven ~10th Memorial Version~” (a tenth anniversary performance of the song released as its own CD single in 2009). In other words, Mr. Wada was unable to actually record a new version of the song. His old vocals have been mixed with a new arrangement by Cher Watanabe, who arranged the original 1999 version of “Seven” as well as the 2009 “Memorial” version.

Lastly, I’ve added a brand new section to the website in honor of Kōji Wada’s career. You can now find translated entries for all of Mr. Wada’s non-Digimon CD singles and albums on their respective pages. A new sub-menu has been added to the top of the website for easy access.

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It should be noted that these pages don’t completely cover every song Kōji Wada ever recorded. A couple of non-commercial CDs (Example: the “ONE STEP!!” album, which was released as a concert-exclusive when Mr. Wada toured Japan with fellow Digimon artist Ai Maeda under the group name “KALEIDO☆SCOPE”) and digital-distribution-only songs (Example: the 2011 Tōhoku Earthquake/Tsunami benefit song, “Days”) have been excluded. But as far as Kōji Wada CDs you can actually buy? This website now covers everything. Hopefully this can be of help to fans who may not have dipped their toes into Mr. Wada’s non-Digimon career.

And with that, we must now say good-bye to a remarkable talent lost far, far too soon. Thank you, Kōji Wada. Your dedication to your music, your dedication to your fans, and your dedication to the franchise that made your career have been cherished by millions. Take a long-earned rest.

– MagicBox


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“This Time, He’s Got A REASON To Wear The Goggles.”

Er… Happy New Year! :P

Thanks to seemingly never-ending heaps of 15th Anniversary merchandise, cast reunions, public celebrations, and even a brand new animated series (!), 2015 has been very generous to Digimon fans. With so much excitement going on, it comes as no surprise to see a trio of new CDs coming to the ever-growing library of DiGiMONMUSiC discs.

So, without further delay… The Digimon Adventure Tri Singles page is now completed!

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Breaking a recent annual tradition of seeing August 01 as our “go-to release date” for Digimon CDs, three Digimon Adventure Tri singles hit stores this week on November 25. Happy Thanksgiving, indeed! Each disc features a newly-arranged and newly-recorded “Tri Version” of a theme song from the original Digimon Adventure television series (all of which subsequently serve as theme songs for Tri itself, of course). Kōji Wada, Ayumi Miyazaki, and even Ai Maeda (whose involvement here makes her the only voice cast member for the original show’s human protagonists to participate in this new series) all return to provide a new spin on their signature songs.

While not technically a DiGiMONMUSiC product, November 18 saw the release of both Standard (CD Only) and Limited (CD+DVD) Editions of Ayumi Miyazaki’s debut album (Long overdue, aren’t we?), “Show You My Brave Hearts.” The album compiles Miyazaki’s original theme songs from Digimon Adventure (“Brave Heart”), Digimon Adventure 02 (“Break Up!” & “Beat Hit!”), and Digimon Frontier (“The Last Element”), along with themes from other series including The Prince Of Tennis, Doraemon, and more. Of particular interest to Digimon fans is a brand new “Acoustic Version” of Miyazaki’s contribution to the franchise’s 10th Anniversary album, “Beyond The Memories” (“Omoide No Mukō”) and a bonus track entitled “Evolution Party Remix” (which is exactly what you probably think it is, given the title).

No additional Tri singles have currently been announced, nor has a soundtrack featuring Gō Sakabe’s musical score. If anything changes, you can rest assured we’ll let you know!

– MagicBox

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“Ima, Bōken Ga Blu-Ray De Shinka Suru!”

2014 is coming to a close, and what better way to celebrate the new year than by doing one last (long overdue) news roundup!

First and most excitingly, Digimon is coming to blu-ray!

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January 09 brings us the release of “Digimon THE MOVIES Blu-Ray 1999-2006,” which collects every piece of theatrically-released Digimon animation to date. This five-disc set includes eight movies (two for Adventure, two for Adventure 02, two for Tamers, and one each for Frontier and Savers) and two 3D shorts (one each for Adventure and Savers), plus bonus features. On March 03, the entire Digimon Adventure TV series comes to high-definition in “Digimon Adventure 15th Anniversary Blu-Ray BOX,” which collects all 54 episodes, plus bonus features. This should go without saying, but neither of these Japan-only sets feature English subtitles. They cost a pretty penny (Or… yen-ny?), but Japan does share the same blu-ray region coding with America, so if this seems like something you’d like to import, go for it!

How does this relate to DiGiMONMUSiC, you ask? First-print versions of each set come with an exclusive bonus CD (so get those pre-orders in!). “THE MOVIES Blu-Ray 1999-2006” comes with an official soundtrack CD of the second Digimon Adventure film, “Our War Game!” (which recycles music that has been previously released on other DiGiMONMUSiC discs), while the “15th Anniversary Blu-Ray BOX” comes with a newly-recorded Digimon Adventure drama CD.

Akira Ishida (Wizarmon), Yuka Tokumitsu (Tailmon), Hisao Egawa (Orgemon), Kae Araki (Hikari Yagami), Hiroaki Hirata (Gennai / The Narrator), Yūko Mizutani (Sora Takenōchi), Yūto Kazama (Yamato Ishida), Umi Tenjin (Kōshirō Izumi), Ai Maeda (Mimi Tachikawa), Masami Kikuchi (Jō Kido / Shū Kido), Chika Sakamoto (Agumon), Atori Shigematsu (Piyomon), Mayumi Yamaguchi (Gabumon), Takahiro Sakurai (Tentomon), Shihomi Mizowaki (Palmon), Miwa Matsumoto (Patamon), and Junko Takeuchi (Gomamon) will all be reprising their iconic roles for this 40-minute drama. Atsuko Tanaka will be making her series debut in a new role. Genki Yoshimura will be writing the script, while Hiroyuki Kakudō will return to direct.

Noticeably absent from the cast is Toshiko Fujita, the one-and-only voice of Taichi Yagami. Neither Takeru Takaishi nor any of his voice actors (Hiroko Konishi in Adventure, Taisuke Yamamoto in Adventure 02, and Megumi Han in the 2013 Adventure PSP video game) is listed amongst the cast.

Both of these upcoming releases (and their translated track listings) are detailed in our updated Soundtrack and Drama pages. Lastly, a new section has been added to the site for the upcoming sequel series, Digimon Adventure Tri. While no composers or artists have been confirmed for the show as of this writing, we’re going to go ahead and assume that the series will, indeed, have music. Here’s to an exciting 2015!

– MagicBox

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“Digimon Movie Song Collection” Scheduled For August 01

Back in May, rumors of a brand new Digimon compilation album surfaced, presumably as part of a continuing celebration of the franchise’s 15th anniversary in its homeland.  As of last week, major Japanese retailers have been updated with track listings and preliminary cover artwork for a new two-disc set, which will be released in two different collectable versions.

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The album, “Digimon Movie Song Collection,” will hit stores on (when else?) August 01, 2014.  Digimon music lovers will have their choice between either the “Omegamon Version” or the “Digimon Movie Version,” which each feature exclusive cover artwork.  The contents of the discs themselves are exactly the same; you may base 100% of your purchasing decision on which artwork you prefer.  As the name implies, this “Movie Song Collection” will compile vocal songs from the franchise’s theatrical films and featurettes (two for Digimon Adventure, two for Digimon Adventure 02, two for Digimon Tamers, and one each for Digimon Frontier and Digimon Savers).  The sixth Digimon TV series, Digimon Xros Wars, did not receive a theatrical film and is thus the only Digimon show not represented on this album.

The track listing is as follows.

Disc 01
01.) “Butter-Fly (Theatre Size #1)” – Digimon Adventure Movie 01 Ending Theme
02.) “Butter-Fly” – Digimon Adventure Movie 02 Opening Theme
03.) “Brave Heart” – Digimon Adventure Movie 02, Digimon Adventure 02 Movie 01, & Digimon Adventure 02 Movie 02 Insert Song
04.) “Requiem” – Digimon Adventure Movie 02 & Digimon Adventure 02 Movie 02 Insert Song
05.) “Opus No. 2 「Spring」 In A Major ~Our War Game!~” – Digimon Adventure Movie 02 Ending Theme
06.) “Target ~Red Shock~” – Digimon Adventure 02 Movie 01 Opening Theme & Digimon Adventure 02 Movie 02 Insert Song
07.) “Break Up!” – Digimon Adventure 02 Movie 01 Insert Song
08.) “FOREVER FRIENDS (ACOUSTIC VERSION)” – Digimon Adventure 02 Movie 01 Insert Song
09.) “Stand • By • Me ~One Summer’s Adventure~ (Summer Memory Version)” – Digimon Adventure 02 Movie 01 Ending Theme
10.) “Friend ~I’ll Never Forget~” – Digimon Adventure 02 Movie 02 Ending Theme
11.) “FOREVER FRIENDS” – Digimon Adventure 02 Movie 01 Insert Song

Disc 02
01.) “The Biggest Dreamer” – Digimon Tamers Movie 01 & Digimon Tamers Movie 02 Opening Theme
02.) “A Sea Of Friends” – Digimon Tamers Movie 01 Insert Song
03.) “EVO” – Digimon Tamers Movie 01 & Digimon Tamers Movie 02 Insert Song
04.) “Moving On! ~Churaumi Version~” – Digimon Tamers Movie 01 Ending Theme
05.) “SLASH!!” – Digimon Tamers Movie 02 Insert Song
06.) “A Promise Of The Evening Sun (Ruki Version)” – Digimon Tamers Movie 02 Insert Song
07.) “One Vision (DUKEMON MATRIX EVOLUTION VERSION)” – Digimon Tamers Movie 02 Insert Song
08.) “A Promise Of The Evening Sun ~Sunset Parade Version~” – Digimon Tamers Movie 02 Ending Theme
09.) “With The Will” – Digimon Frontier Movie Insert Song
10.) “FIRE!!” – Digimon Frontier Movie Ending Theme
11.) “Lightly” – Digimon Savers Movie Ending Theme

In addition to putting some long lost songs back in-print, this release also features some exclusive tunes.  Tracks 09 & 11 on disc one and tracks 04 & 08 on disc two are newly-recorded cover versions performed by series veteran Ai Maeda (otherwise known as “AiM”).  This is the second DiGiMONMUSiC release in a row for which Ai Maeda has contributed new content (the first being 2013’s “Ending Best Aimer” album).

We’ve added an entry for this release on our “Multiverse Albums” page.  We’ll be sure to post any updates as they become available.

– MagicBox

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Some Takeaways From The “We Love DiGiMONMUSiC” Re-Release

I received my shipping confirmation on Christmas Day of 2013.  Over one month later (thanks to numerous weather delays), the re-release of the “We Love DiGiMONMUSiC” memorial boxset is finally in my hands.

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As you can probably tell, this post is a little less formal than my news updates.  I just wanted to jot down some of my thoughts on this set while they were still fresh in my mind.  I was starting to think this would be one of the few DiGiMONMUSiC releases I’d never get to own, so I’m very thankful that it’s back in-print.

The discs themselves feature the exact same tracks as their 2002 counterparts (as expected).  It’s a simple theme song collection, the same Kōji Wada openings and Ai Maeda endings you see packed into every other release.  You likely already own half the music on this set even if you only have a modest Digimon collection.  The real draw are the cover versions of the theme songs performed by the series’ voice actors, which can only be found on this boxset.  My personal favorite is the Digimon Frontier cast’s version of “FIRE!!”  I think it’s a missed opportunity that the cast of Savers and Xros Wars weren’t assembled to record new versions of those shows’ theme songs, but this was never advertised as anything other than a repackaging of existing material, so c’est la vie.

Bonus goodies include a 2014 calendar/poster, two booklets (one only six pages and the other a whopping 104 pages), and of course, a beautiful artbox.  Each disc also features bonus tracks with commentary from the voice actors, composers, and artists.  The big booklet is what fascinates me the most.  This thing is absolutely filled to the brim with liner notes, but most of it is far beyond my Japanese fluency.  What I can understand is really neat.

For nerds like me, the best part is an updated, chronological list of nearly every Digimon CD, with release dates and catalogue numbers and everything.  I know it sounds boring (and it is), but it’s a fantastic resource.  This new list makes a few changes from the list in the “Digimon Animation Chronicle” book, switching around the chronology of certain discs.  For example, the first CD single for “Beat Hit!” is listed as DiGiMONMUSiC CD #35 in the “Animation Chronicle,” yet it’s listed as #36 in the memorial boxset’s booklet.  I went ahead and updated the numbers on this site to match those found in the booklet, for you dorks like me who care about this stuff.

Just like in the “Digimon Animation Chronicle” book, though, there are a few errors.  Ai Maeda’s CD single for “My Light” has been completely omitted from the list, which screws up the aforementioned “DiGiMONMUSiC Chronology” numbers.  I assume its exclusion is merely an oversight.  I mean, it’s obviously a Digimon CD.  It contains the ending theme for “Diablomon’s Counterattack.”  The rear cover is a Digimon illustration!  I’ve corrected this error; that CD single is still listed as Digimon CD #102 on this site.

Even more baffling is the exclusion of every single Xros Wars CD.  What’s that about?  The list skips straight from 2010’s “ALL THE BEST” CD to the 2013 “Ending Best Aimer” disc.  No way that was an accident.  Is it because the Xros Wars CDs were all released by Columbia?  It’s a real shame to have such a huge gap like that.  It’s like the series never existed…

If you’re interested in buying this set, you’d better act fast.  All the retailers are calling this a “limited edition,” just like it was back in 2002.  You’re going to end up paying nearly $80 for this box, and that’s without shipping.  There’s no debating it: this thing is way overpriced, especially considering there are only nine exclusive songs on this set.  But the songs are really good, even if they’re just cover versions of existing tunes.  If you can make room in your budget, it’s a great collector’s item.

– MagicBox

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Updates And Re-Releases Galore!

It’s been a while since we’ve updated, and we’ve unfortunately missed out on reporting a few upcoming releases. So, let’s get all caught up!

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(Image Credit to FTS)

We’ve updated our entry for the new “Digimon Ending Best Aimer” CD, released back on August 1st, with coverart, confirmed artists, and a finalized tracklisting.  While early rumors declared this release to be a full self-cover album by Ai Maeda, only one song has in fact been re-recorded.  Track #11, an “AiM Solo Version” of fan-favorite song “Our Digital World,” is the disc’s only new material,  with tracks #01-10 being the original, unaltered ending themes for Digimon Adventure, Digimon Adventure 02, Digimon Tamers, Digimon Frontier, and Digimon Savers.  While not comprised of newly-recorded songs like some fans were hoping for, this release now serves as a companion to previous compilation discs like the “Opening Best Spirit” CD and the three “Insert Song Best” albums.

Seemingly in celebration of the franchise’s 15th anniversary, various other DiGiMONMUSiC discs are quietly being reissued at budget prices.  The twelve “Best Partner” CD singles were re-released back in September, and we’ll be seeing a re-release of the commemorative “We Love DiGiMONMUSiC” five-disc boxset this Christmas (exactly 11 years since its original release back in 2002).

We’ve updated our listings for these discs with new release dates, catalogue numbers, and Amazon / CD Japan links.  I know I’ll definitely be picking up the five-disc boxset, as I missed out on it a decade ago.  As always, we’ll be sure to update as more information becomes available!

– MagicBox

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“Digimon Ending Best” Tracklist Revealed

As we reported a little over a week ago, a new Digimon album, tentatively called “Digimon Ending Best,” has been scheduled for release on August 1st of this year. The CD’s listing on Amazon Japan has since been updated with an early (and predictable) track listing.

01.) “I Wish” – Digimon Adventure Ending Theme 01
02.) “Keep On” – Digimon Adventure Ending Theme 02
03.) “Tomorrow My Wind Will Blow” – Digimon Adventure 02 Ending Theme 01
04.) “Always, Whenever” – Digimon Adventure 02 Ending Theme 02
05.) “My Tomorrow” – Digimon Tamers Ending Theme 01
06.) “Days –Affection And The Ordinary–” – Digimon Tamers Ending Theme 02
07.) “Innocent ~While Remaining Naïve~” – Digimon Frontier Ending Theme 01
08.) “An Endless Tale” – Digimon Frontier Ending Theme 02
09.) “One Star” – Digimon Savers Ending Theme 01
10.) “Shooting Stars” – Digimon Savers Ending Theme 02

The page does note, however, that this track listing is subject to change. It’s also worth noting that the sixth Digimon television series, Digimon Xros Wars, did not have any ending themes, thus why it is not featured on this disc. As of now, it has not yet been confirmed if the songs on this album have been newly-recorded or if we’re merely looking at a compilation of existing material. Regardless, we’ll be sure to keep you updated when more information (and coverart) is released!

– MagicBox

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