HEATH, the soft-spoken bassist for the internationally renowned Jrock band X JAPAN, passed away at the end of October. He was 55 years old.
According to those familiar with the matter, HEATH had struggled with his health since the start of the year. He had been consulting with a physician, which ultimately led to his being diagnosed with cancer.
Unfortunately, the disease had already progressed so far that HEATH himself had little time to sort out his own affairs. He did not have the chance to share the news of his diagnosis or his personal battle against cancer with any fellow members of X JAPAN.
Upon hearing news of HEATH’s passing, X JAPAN drummer, pianist, and leader YOSHIKI canceled his scheduled November 1 appearance at the “37th Award or Honor” Gala in San Francisco. He immediately flew to Shinjuku, Tokyo, where he bid a silent farewell to his longtime friend.
HEATH joined X JAPAN in 1992 following the departure of previous bassist TAIJI. In the same year, HEATH recorded with the band the 29-minute epic ART OF LIFE. He also performed on the 1996 studio album DAHLIA, as well as on all the singles that followed it, including I.V., JADE, BORN TO BE FREE, and the most recent digital release Angel. He served with X JAPAN until its 1997 disbandment and again upon its reunion in 2007. HEATH’s last musical appearance was as a guest for YOSHIKI’s dinner show in August of this year.
“HEATH had always hoped that X JAPAN would resume activities together”, mentioned someone close to him.
The iconic bassist will be deeply missed.