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Yoko Kanno, Voice Actors, Musicians Create Cowboy Bebop Charity Track to Fight COVID-19

posted on by Kim Morrissy
Lineup includes Masahiro Aoki, Kevin Penkin, Ed Goldfarb, Shihori Nakane, Steve Blum, Beau Billingslea, more

Composer Yoko Kanno and her band The Seatbelts, voice actors, and musicians related to the animation and games industries have teamed up to recreate Cowboy Bebop's iconic ending theme "The Real Folk Blues" for charity. The track released on Bandcamp and YouTube on Friday with a pay-what-you-want donation scheme. All proceeds will be donated to the CDC Foundation to support measures against the spread of the new coronavirus COVID-19.

The track was arranged by Mason Lieberman (RWBY, Sarazanmai), a senior game audio coordinator at Tencent and features over 40 guests. Former CAPCOM composer Masahiro Aoki is credited for the mix. Cowboy Bebop English voice actors Beau Billingslea and Steve Blum also contributed to the spoken words and ending tag respectively. Vocals were performed by J-pop singer Shihori, Úyanga Bold, Raj Ramayya, Dale North, Dawn M. Bennett, and Kaitlyn Fae.

"This song was originally the end credit theme for Cowboy Bebop, a generation-defining anime series," explains project organizer Mason Lieberman. "This project grew out of the goal of creating something fun and beautiful with the huge number of available musicians who have been sidelined as COVID-19 shuts down our entire industry. As it snowballed and grew, I realized we needed to use this as a valuable opportunity to give back to others and support everyone else who has been impacted by this crisis. I am greatly honored to present this smorgasbord of musical talent; many of my personal heroes are present on this release, and it is a tremendous joy to see them all working so hard for the greater good in this exceptional time of need."

The full list of music credits is below:

  • Synth/Additional Sound Design: Jason Walsh
  • Organ: Robbie Benson
  • Keys: Ed Goldfarb
  • Guitar: David McLean
  • Bass: Matthew Hines
  • Drums: Kevin Brown
  • Saxophone: Zac Zinger
  • Flute: Kevin Penkin
  • Lead Vox 1: Shihori Nakane
  • Lead Vox 2: Úyanga Bold
  • Lead Vox 3: Raj Ramayya
  • Rap 1: Mega Ran
  • Rap 2: Substantial
  • Rap 3: Zaid Tabani
  • Poem: D.B. Cooper
  • String Arranger: Lance Treviño
  • String Copyist/Orchestrator/String Mockup: Dallas Crane
  • Violins: Molly Rogers Greenbaum, David Morales Boroff, Felicia Rojas, Jeff Ball
  • Violas: Joe Chen, Molly Rogers Greenbaum, Isaac Schutz, Jeff Ball
  • Cellos: Andrew Dunn, David Tangney
  • Upright Bass: Travis Kindred

The Cowboy Bebop anime first debuted in 1998. A live-action adaptation produced by Netflix is currently in production.

Thanks to Mason Lieberman for the news tip

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