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Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles Remastered

Finally, Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles Remastered is here! Whoop whoop!! Way back in 2003 when I got the gig to adapt lyrics for two songs and voice act in this game I knew I was incredibly fortunate. This was the biggest break of my career!

But ten years later when I first performed “Moonless Starry Night” and “Morning Sky” in a concert in Tokyo something didn’t feel right. “Hmm…is it just me, or does the audience seemed to be hearing these songs for the first time?...But it’s Final Fantasy??!!” (Hint: not many people had a GameCube) Fast forward to 2018 and Square Enix contacting me to announce that they were remastering the whole game and putting it out on Switch, PS4 and mobile platforms and could I be so kind as to rewrite some more lyrics and rerecord the two songs?

Hell yes!

And then my next thought was, “But what about the narration? Can I still do that too?”

The story ends well dear reader. I am still the narrator! Yay!

So on March 7th 2019, I headed to Sound City near Tokyo Tower for a four hour recording session to lay down the main vocals and harmonies for both songs. It was amazing meeting Kumi Tanioka, the composer, again. She hadn’t aged a bit!

I brought a massage gun to keep my leg muscles relaxed so we had a bit of fun with that but then it was down to business. Later that month I was heading to the US to do two Metal Gear Concerts so I’d been on a strength training regime. If I don’t put the work in, that “Sins of the Father” is a bitch to sing, so I was in top shape for the Final Fantasy recording!

I love how that sounds.

The Final Fantasy recording!

Over the years I’ve had the chance to sing “Morning Sky” and “Moonless Starry Night”, live, many times and I even rerecorded them with Ganime Jazz in 2017, so now, they’re a part of me.

I’ve met with fans online and at concerts and conventions who’ve told me how much they love these songs. That is so special to me. Back in 2003, I was waiting for my career to really blossom. Now, in 2020, I remember the weight of my hopes and dreams and the worry that I wouldn’t achieve much and feel immense gratitude for the work I’ve been able to do in this field. Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles was supposed to come out in January of this year. Isn’t it fitting it was delayed? Now we are in a full blown pandemic, with our hopes and plans for the year dashed, it seems fitting the game is only now arriving. When we recorded the trailer for the game this June, the Square Enix crew beamed in over video chat, to minimize any risk of infection. Twelve squares on a screen listening in. My vocal booth in Roppongi now transported into the guest bedroom. My husband's study now repurposed as the engineering room. Everyone anxious to do a good job for the fans. The best thing about this set up was the ease of walking to the fridge to crack open a beer during mix down!

When you listen to “Morning Sky” I want you to remember “the times when my friends stayed near”. Ask yourself, are you now “stronger, wiser than when” you first met them. Be “happy if it’s true” and thank them.

Be glad you were smart enough to choose good friends and that you are growing into a better person alongside them. For “Morning Sky” I hope you feel uplifted, hopeful and determined to “walk into the dark carrying the light of tomorrow.” I trust you will listen to your own heart, that speaks “deep inside, so silently.”

My Final Fantasy friends, I hope you are moved to cry when you hear beautiful music and are healed and comforted by your tears.

“March on, cherish hope and believe.” (Morning Sky 2020 version)



でも10年後、東京のコンサートで「Moonless Starry Night」「Morning Sky」を初めて披露した時、客席の空気に何か違和感を感じたの。

“うーん…… これってわたしだけ?みんな初めて聞く曲っぽいけど…… これってファイナルファンタジーの曲??!!”


次に2018年まで時を進めてみましょう。 Square Enix から、ゲーム全体をリマスターしてNintendo SwitchやPS4、モバイルでの発売決定を告知する、それに伴って、歌詞を書き直した上で2曲を再収録したいとの連絡を受けたの。






その月の後半、私はMetal Gearのコンサート(2箇所)のためにアメリカに行くことになっていて、筋トレを続けていたの。もしそれをしていなかったら「Sins of the Father」を歌うにはきついしね。ファイナルファンタジーのレコーディングに向けても最高の状態で臨めたわ。



長年にわたって、「Morning Sky」と「Moonless Starry Night」を何度もライブで歌う機会や、2017年にはGanime Jazz で再収録したこともあって、今ではこの2曲は私の一部ね。



ファイナルファンタジー・クリスタルクロニクルズは、今年の1月に発売される予定だった。延期になったことは当然のことではないかしら?本格的パンデミックに陥っている現在、1年の希望や計画が崩れてしまい、ゲーム発売は、今ようやくその時を迎えた。6月にゲームのトレーラーを収録した時、 Square Enixのスタッフは感染リスクを最小限に抑えるために、ビデオチャットで12人がスクリーンに映し出されて聞き入っていた。六本木にあった私のボーカルブースは、今ではゲスト用ベッドルームに移設。夫の書斎はエンジニアルームに生まれ変わった。みんながファンのために良い仕事をしたくてたまらないと思っている。でも何より良かったことは、ミックスダウンの間に冷蔵庫まで歩いて行ってビールを開けられることね!

「Morning Sky」を聞く時は、“友達がそばにいたときのこと”を思い出してほしい。初めて出会った時よりも“より強く、より賢くなった”と、あなた自身に問いかけてほしい。“それが真実であるなら幸せなことである”と、彼らに感謝しましょう。


「Morning Sky」では、高揚感と希望を持ち、“明日の光を背負って暗闇の中を歩いていく”という決意を持ってほしい。私は、あなた自身の心の声に、“奥まで静かに”耳を傾けると信じている。


“進撃せよ、希望を大切に、そして信じよう” (Morning Sky 2020 version)


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