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Mikio Fujioka, guitarist for Japanese band Babymetal

by Kirk Fox

Nicknamed “The Little God” by fans.

Mikio Fujioka, guitarist for Japanese metal band Babymetal, died Friday, Jan. 5, 2018. He had fallen off an observation deck while stargazing on Dec. 30, sustaining severe injuries, according to NME. He was 36. 

“We hope that he is now with his GUITAR MASTER A.Holdsworth and enjoying an epic guitar session with him,” the members of Babymetal wrote in a tribute on Instagram. 


Babymetal achieved an international following with their unique theatrical blend of female Japanese-pop vocals and heavy metal instrumentation. The group calls this sound “kawaii metal,” or “cute metal.” They have opened for popular acts like Red Hot Chili Peppers and Guns N’ Roses and appeared on “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.” 

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Fujioka was a member of the group’s accomplished instrumental backing band, known as the Kami Band, who perform in make-up and costumes as nature spirits. He has toured with the band since 2013 and was nicknamed “Ko-Gami,” or “The Little God,” partially because of his diminutive stature. 

Babymetal ended their Instagram tribute to Fujioka with lyrics to their song, “The One.” 

“We are the one. Together. We’re the only one. You are the one. Forever.” 

Fujioka is survived his wife and two daughters. 

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