[[caption-width-right:288:Once and for all, the best metal drummer of Japan]]

Munetaka Higuchi or ''Higuchi Munetaka'' (December 24, 1958 November 30, 2008) was a Japanese HeavyMetal drummer best known for founding Music/{{Loudness}} among many, many other bands and acts with which he was associated, as both a drummer and a producer, which can be seen on his page on Wiki/TheOtherWiki. He left Loudness in 1993 and was reunited with the band in 2001 to a successful career with it before [[AuthorExistenceFailure dying of liver cancer]] in 2008.

He was ''the'' premier HardRock[=/=]HeavyMetal drummer of Japan. Nearly anyone and everyone who has ever played drums for a Japanese rock or metal band, at least to a certain date, looked up to him or credited him for inspiration. Music/YoshikiHayashi, who is arguably the best ''living'' Japanese rock drummer, said on Munetaka's death that he was one of his greatest inspirations. Also, when Munetaka died, [[http://youtu.be/c0D0nSPM3-M Pearl Drums posted a tribute to him]] on their Youtube page.

[[WMG: Tropes encompassing Munetaka Higuchi include:]]
* TheAlcoholic: He was reputed to have been a heavy drinker and perhaps an alcoholic, and his heavy drinking likely contributed to the cancer that eventually killed him.
* AllDrummersAreAnimals: Averted. He tended to stay out of trouble (at least in comparison to other rockers and metal artists of the time), and was, by many accounts, TheSmartGuy and TheHeart.
* AmenBreak: Of COURSE he used this a few times, being a drummer.
* CassandraTruth: His lyrics for many of the songs on ''Pandemonium.''
* CoolCar: He was the ''other'' Japanese rock drummer known for his taste in expensive luxury sports cars...
* CoolOldGuy: Age did little or nothing to make him seem less attractive or less capable. Even with entirely greyed hair and approaching his 50s, his appearance still looked good - and right up until months from his death, he could still kick ''anyone'''s ass behind a drum kit.
* FountainOfExpies: [[Music/YoshikiHayashi Yoshiki]] is probably the most famous, but in some way ''every'' drummer from Japan and from some parts of East Asia, because he and Yoshiki ''are'' the premiere Japanese and to some degree the premiere Asian drummers of HardRock / HeavyMetal, to the degree that almost anyone starting out as a drummer will at least have some familiarity with them to the degree that Western drummers do with Neal Peart of Music/{{Rush}} and Buddy Rich.
* TheMentor: For [[Music/TaijiSawada Taiji]]. Munetaka had befriended him and, on his leaving Music/XJapan, personally argued for his being selected as Loudness's bassist. They worked together closely as friends and artists, to the point where, when the label demanded Taiji's leaving the band, Munetaka left as well - and they maintained their friendship even after they were no longer in the same band. Taiji would, before his own death, play at two of the memorial shows for Munetaka.