We proudly announce the upcoming release of the major label debut album of the world-famous ocarina player from Belgium, Tom Vanopphem, on UNIVERSAL MUSIC on September 22, 2021.
Tom Vanopphem was born in Brussels, Belgium, in 1990. In 1998, when he was 8 years old, he noticed the ocarina in the Japanese video game “The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time”. For a long time, he thought the ocarina was an imaginary instrument that existed only in the video game. He was so moved and excited when he realized it was a real musical instrument.
In 2004, he touched ocarina for the first time.
As he started watching the videos of demonstration of the multi-tube ocarina on the internet, he was motivated to play it himself. At the age of 19 in 2009, he began practicing the multi-tube ocarina without any prior musical training. He practiced intensely and learned the musical theories to improve his play. By traveling and performing in various countries such as Italy, Australia, Greece, China, and Taiwan, he gained experiences and received numerous compliments. Eventually, he was invited to perform a concert in Kobe, Japan. Visiting Japan was his dream come true.
As Tom loved the Japanese culture, beautiful landscapes, and kindness of people so much, he decided to stay in Japan longer than he had originally planned.
Currently, he belongs to a manufacturer of the ocarinas, Otsuka Musical Instrument Mfg. Co.Ltd.
Tom Vanopphem, an ocarina player from Belgium, loves Japan and Japanese culture. He has become popular on social media by playing requested songs with the ocarina. Speaking fluent Japanese, he has been attracting many followers. The number of his TikTok followers counts over 330,000.
After playing the ocarina around the world, Italy, Australia, Belgium, Greece, China, Taiwan, and Japan, he decided to stay in Japan where the video game “The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time” was born. It gave him an opportunity to get to know the ocarina. The Japanese culture, economic strength, people’s kindness were additional factors that made him stay.
Tom Vanopphem releases his major debut album, “Bittersweet” on Universal Music on September 22, 2021.
“Bittersweet” is a cover album of the J-pop band, DREAMS COME TRUE. DREAMS COME TRUE is one of the musicians who represent Japan. The ocarina’s sensitive and lyrical sound perfectly matches with the melodies created by the extraordinary melody maker duo, Miwa Yoshida and Masato Nakamura, and enhances the beauty of the songs.
The album consists of ten masterpieces of DREAMS COME TRUE, Mirai Yosouzu II, Suki, Kiminishika Kikoenai, Memai, etc. In addition, as a bonus track, “Green Hill Zone” from the game “SONIC THE HEDGEHOG” is included, which was composed by Masato Nakamura. Recently it was played at the opening ceremony of the Tokyo Olympics 2020. This is actually the song that introduced DREAMS COME TRUE to Tom.
Tom plays three octaves with triple ocarina, not the ordinary single ocarina.
His ocarina makes you hear the words. This album is a must-listen for music fans all over the world.