Testimonies from Hyo Jin Moon Band Members and Staff
Keyboard & Coordinator for Hyo Jin Moon Band
Last year was the 10th anniversary of Hyo Jin Moon’s ascension. We, the members of the Hyo Jin Moon Band, had an opportunity to regroup and perform together once again. Yet for us, the real significance was that Hyo Jin Moon’s three children had come to sing his songs along with us. We were delighted to support them on stage just as we had done with their father on so many occasions.
Before any performance, Hyo Jin Moon always gave detailed directions to the band. We came to appreciate how serious he took each performance and we directly experienced his personal commitment in making sure that each of us performed as he expected.
Before we performed with his children last year, I hoped we could create the right atmosphere so that they could experience their father as we had. And that I thought to be the very best gift we could give to them. Certainly, as members of his own band, we had very distinct experiences with Hyo Jin Moon than most. He was our commander in the battlefield where we fought side by side, and at the same time, he was a loving elder brother who simply treated us as his own family. As we performed together again, my other hope was that Hyo Jin Moon’s children could readily feel that we were their brothers and very much part of their family.
It is true that not many understood who Hyo Jin Moon really was. So, through this concert, my hope was for people to feel Hyo Jin Moon’s pure heart. He worked very hard in the creation and production of his music even though no one really understood him. He expressed what he understood about the cause of contradiction rooted so deep in humankind and society. He searched for the most effective ways to lead humanity toward the ideal world. It remains my hope that through this 2018 live concert everyone could have the opportunity to think about what strenuous efforts Hyo Jin Moon has made through his music.
Only a handful of people supported Hyo Jin Moon throughout his life, and they did so in different ways. Those individuals really loved him and came together despite past misunderstandings. It felt like Hyo Jin Moon was saying, “Hey, forget about your stupid nonsense. Just come. I’ll be there, OK?” Right before this memorial concert, I believe that Hyo Jin Moon called all of us together from the spirit world. And when the concert was over, it was a great festival aligned and centered on the one and only Hyo Jin Moon.
Drummer for Hyo Jin Moon Band, 1992-2007
Unfortunately, I was not able to be on stage at the memorial concert. I watched the concert video and felt it was a miracle to see Hyo Jin Moon’s children performing with their father on stage. Every time I watch this video it moves me to tears. It will be an eternal treasure.
Backup Vocals in 2003 Hyo Jin Moon concert in Osaka, Japan
Backup Vocals & Guitar in Hyo Jin Moon concert tour 2004, 2005, 2006 and 2007
I am currently part of the Los Angeles Family Church band. We were invited to perform our original songs and a medley of some of Hyo Jin Moon’s songs at this 10th anniversary concert at Manhattan Center. Four days before the concert, one of the regular guitarists of the Hyo Jin Moon Band had an unexpected emergency and had to cancel his flight. I was suddenly asked to take his place in the band as a second guitarist, and had to learn all of the songs in almost 40 hours before my flight to New York. This was in addition to organizing the Los Angeles Family Church band for the trip to New York including our own rehearsals.
I had practiced for almost 30 hours straight when my tenosynovitis in my left hand and wrist started hurting. I kept practicing anyway, but it just got worse. Eventually I had to stop practicing even though I wanted to continue. All I could do at that point was pray. Suddenly it hit me; Hyo Jin Moon’s life was full of pain, but he had to push through so many difficulties to achieve his mission and goal. I realized that he often wanted to do more than he physically could. He must have been frustrated by his physical limitations as well as our limitations. We limited him because we didn’t understand him enough and couldn’t support him enough. He was crushed in pain many times but he never gave up. He kept pushing himself for God and his parents. I was now determined to let God work through me. I thought, “I’ll do my best to make the audience happy and make Father and Mother Moon smile through Hyo Jin Moon’s children singing with their father.” When I woke up in the morning before my departure, the pain in my hand was almost gone and I knew I could play with the band.
In New York, I met with the band members, Masaya, Masahiko, Shunya and Makotomo, and others who worked closely with him. Hyo Jin Moon’s children came and only stayed less than 24 hours in New York for this concert. I felt strongly that Hyo Jin Moon was gathering everyone for his 10th memorial concert.
While performing at the concert, I felt Hyo Jin Moon’s presence from the very beginning as he performed with us on the screen. When Shin Heung Moon sang “Eternal Friend,” a song written for Hyo Jin Moon’s younger brother, Heung Jin Moon, I felt both their spirits were with us. Also, when Hyo Jin Moon sang with Shin Chul Moon in “One Word” and Shin Yuh Moon in “I Will Always Treasure Your Love,” I felt Hyo Jin Moon’s presence with them and my tears just rolled down. I had to focus on my guitar and vocals, but whenever I looked at Masaya, the bassist, he looked back at me as if he knew what I felt and he was smiling and nodding to me during each of the songs. During the guitar solo for “Rebirth,” many young second-generation Unificationists in the audience were screaming loudly. I felt everyone came into oneness as the song progressed. I couldn’t stop crying on stage, grateful for God’s grace in having us all here and for being able to perform with Hyo Jin Moon.
Drummer for Hyo Jin Moon Band, 2015-Present
I am a half-Japanese, half-Korean young Unificationist and I am currently living in New York City as a professional drummer. For 16 years, drumming has been my life passion and calling.
I started playing drums at 11 years old, and when I turned 15, I started practicing at Hyo Jin Moonʼs MCJ studio. In my teenage years, I inherited Hyo Jin Moonʼs vision, motivation, and purpose for the arts: “Living for the sake of others.” Drumming to serve a higher purpose has been my core value throughout my music career.
My first encounter with Hyo Jin Moon was when I went to his concert in Chiba, Japan in 2007. I was 15 years old. I still remember the concert clearly. It was the first time I ever went to a concert of his, and so I was absolutely amazed at how emotional and passionate Hyo Jin Moonʼs performance and lyrics were. The band was quite large and the sound was very powerful.
I was moved, and the excitement I felt at that time did not go away for a while. After this concert, my mother connected me to Hyo Jin Moon’s bandʼs drummer, Mr. Yonemura, and I started going to the MCJ studio.
At that time, MCJ was working to develop young Unificationist musicians, so I got an opportunity to play drums with other members and was able to brushed up my drum-skills. Most importantly, I learned “why we do music”, and “the purpose, motivation, and Hyo Jin Moonʼs vision” from his band member Mr. Harigae and Mr. Yonemura.
In 2008, I was asked to perform drums at the Hyo Jin Moon concert as an opening act, and so I prepared for it in the MCJ studio. However, one day I got the message that informed me about Hyo Jin Moonʼs passing. I could not believe this had happened, and I felt hopeless; but eventually, this occurrence made me stronger. “Who will inherit Hyo Jin Moonʼs vision if I donʼt?” Therefore, I decided to go to the music college to improve as a drummer and do music as my profession. I began my professional career as a drummer while in college. I went on tour with several popular Japanese and Korean bands.
In 2015, Hyo Jin Moonʼs seven-year memorial concert was held in Korea; from this moment on, I toured the world while playing for Hyo Jin Moonʼs band. Every year we played in Korea, New York, Las Vegas, and Japan. While traveling throughout the United States, I was inspired by the country’s diversity and influence and I felt a strong calling to move to the States. My mind was immediately made up and I moved to the U.S. after Hyo Jin Moonʼs 10-year memorial concert tour in 2018, in order to expand my network, hone my skills, study English, and, most importantly, to make a positive impact in the culture. As a young Unificationist musician who was trained by Hyo Jin Nim and the band members, I believe the arts are a powerful tool to help make True Parents’ dream a reality, and that’s what I have to do. I sincerely give thanks to Hyo Jin Moon, all of his members, and True Parents and Heavenly Parents for showing me the vision and giving me the mission.
The 10th anniversary Hyo Jin Moon memorial concert in NY was incredible, and it was the best performance I’ve ever done. I was feeling Hyo Jin Moon during the entire performance while I was playing drums. I was happy beyond description to perform with Hyo Jin Moonʼs children. There was really something on the stage; I felt it, I was feeling it. I completely offered and invested all my emotion and energy to the song called REBIRTH. I felt as if I was content with death after the song.
We haven’t performed officially as the Hyo Jin Moon band since this concert, but I and Mr. Matt Ishizuka had kept playing Hyo Jin Moon’s songs in Los Angeles, and we also got a chance to play REBIRTH at the City of Refuge Church (Bishop Noel Jones). Hyo Jin Moonʼs songs have hit many people’s hearts both emotionally and spiritually.
I would love to keep playing Hyo Jin Moon’s songs and to send his messages to the people, as well as to pursue my dreams and the mission. From his words and music, you may feel encouragement and love; love of family, brothers and sisters, True Parents, and ultimately how much Hyo Jin Nim embodied “Hyo” (孝).
I am so grateful that I was able to be with his members and perform at this 2018 NY concert. Thank you very much.
Recording Engineer for Hyo Jin Moon in the Manhattan Center and his Belvedere studio, recorded over 11,200 songs in that time period, 1987-2002
Roy started working at Manhattan Center in 1979 recording and doing live sound for Father Moon around the country for the International Conference on the Unity of the Sciences Conferences
Doing the live sound at the Manhattan Center for the 2018 memorial concert was great fun. It was nice to see his children singing so well and really pouring their hearts into each song. Mixing the concert in Manhattan Center Studio 7 was nice, but really challenging. Hyo Jin Moon mixed all his albums by himself and paid great attention to the blending of each element within each song. He would sometimes push himself very hard and mix one song for a few days until he was satisfied. When you mix on an automated sound console you create a mix/pass tree, which can easily go into the hundreds, to go back and forth within each section of the song adjusting many parameters until it comes out right. I hope that he was happy with the results of the concert. It was an honor to be involved with this project!
President, Manhattan Center Studios, 1997-1999
President, Manhattan Center Productions, 2002-2015
General Counsel, Manhattan Center, 2002-current
Co-editor & Publisher, Speeches of Hyo Jin Moon 2006-2008
Hyo Jin Moon continues to warrant respect for what he did in a short but intense life. (I’m reminded of my favorite Maya Angelou quote: life loves the liver of it.) An unbiased viewer will gain a lot from watching this terrific recording of the 2018 concert. Its distinct elements are immediately apparent: great virtuoso performances by each member of the Hyo Jin Moon Band, the courage of Shin Chul, Shin Heung and Shin Yuh to perform and interpret their father’s songs, and the production values that included footage of Hyo Jin Moon’s past performances and the presentation of his lyrics in English. Not only was he inserted into the concert by way of the technical ingenuity of Toshi Tagawa and his team, but Hyo Jin Moon manifested himself throughout the performance. He was right there on stage, alive and kicking, as he remains so to this day.
Whatever you may know of Hyo Jin Moon’s 1988 song “Rebirth,” watch it anew. In my opinion, it will go down in the music records as one of rock’s greatest anthems. As I watched Masaya and Shunya begin together mid-stage, accompanied by the thundering drumming of Makotomo, Matt’s additional guitar, and then Hyo Jin Nim’s own committed and driven performance, I had a flash-back. I remembered being at Belvedere when Hyo Jin Moon looked at his father and declared to us all, “I want to be a weapon in my father’s hand against evil.” The image I retain is of Hyo Jin Moon offering himself as a baseball bat to be swung by his dad. But it was not a baseball bat that Hyo Jin Moon himself used, it was the guitar. He took it and used it in the most committed manner until the end of his all-too-short earthly life. I encourage you to read the opening of Tolkien’s lesser known work, The Silmarillion. Tolkien describes how evil seeps into an otherwise harmonious and peaceful realm through an insidious and increasingly powerful discordant chorus. By his life, Hyo Jin Moon sought to bridge the divide between humanity and God and the divisions that yet plague our human family.
We may speak of Hyo Jin Moon’s legacy through his extensive catalogue of original songs and his many efforts in the Arts or by his speeches and writings. But surely his greatest legacy is his children who were beloved by him and who continue to love him to this very day. That is why they perform and sing his songs (not at all easy to do!) and they will continue to manifest that love in whatever else they may undertake to do in their lives. Watch a tearful Shin Yuh sing a duet with her dad of “I Will Always Treasure Your Love.”
Those of you who may not have been here for the live performance, don’t worry. You now have a great opportunity to watch and have your own experience.
Dr. Frank Kaufmann
Co-editor & Publisher, Speeches of Hyo Jin Moon 2006-2008
Frank Kaufmann was blessed to spend tens of hours in intimate settings with Hyo Jin Moon, our elder brother (Christmas 1988 until the present)
Publisher, New World Encyclopedia under True Parents’ direction
We all want to get close to greatness. This is natural, because it comes from our yearning for God. This greatness-seeking heart awakens in us as we watch this concert.
Hyo Jin Moon’s great fruits and wonder flow to us through this 10th anniversary concert. From these we grow to know him better, and feel closer to him.
His music and art makes present for us his genius and passion. But our deepest thirst is much more for love than it is for genius and passion. That love we seek to discover is seen and felt intimately during this concert, which overflows with all he poured into these people whom he loved and served … his children above all.
Producer, Director & Video Editor, Hyo Jin Moon 2018 Concert
Graphic Designer and Assistant Sound Engineer at Manhattan Center Studios 1991-1998
Hyo Jin Moon’s last concert in America was held in 1993, then he performed in Japan and Korea from 2003 to 2007. Because of this, many people never had the chance to experience Hyo Jin Moon’s deep heart through his live performances. I was hoping that this concert could become the means for people to feel Hyo Jin Moon’s heart through his music. With this same purpose in mind, I also produced the introductory video of Hyo Jin Moon for people to understand him and feel his heart behind all that he has done. Now looking back, I believe this concert was able to accomplish that.
When I first dreamed up the idea, I imagined Hyo Jin Moon on the screen and his band playing together. But then, a very special addition was incorporated: Hyo Jin Moon’s children singing their father’s songs.
In order to make this concert become a reality, we had to overcome many difficulties. But with the helpful efforts from many people who love Hyo Jin Moon, and with so much help from God and Hyo Jin Moon in the spirit world, we were able to host this concert.
In order to produce this show, I needed certain essential elements: videotapes of Hyo Jin Moon’s Japan concerts from 2003 to 2007, individual video tapes from each camera that followed Hyo Jin Moon on stage, and the isolated audio tracks of Hyo Jin Moon’s voice and his guitar performance from those concerts. I also needed to make sure the original band members and Hyo Jin Moon’s children would be on board.
Finding the video tapes was almost impossible. Manhattan Center Japan used to house them, but they were all later sent to Korea. When I contacted Korea about this, they told me all the video tapes were stored in 600 unlabeled boxes. At first I was willing to travel to Korea to search through these boxes myself, but someone over there volunteered to help me out. He searched through the boxes but couldn’t find any of the concert tapes. I was then recommended that I check Kogensya, the Japanese Unification Church book company, to see if they had anything. They didn’t have exactly what we needed but they had enough useable material.
Finding the audio tracks was just as difficult. I asked the former band leader, but he couldn’t find anything. It seemed as if I’d hit a dead end. I finally contacted Masahiko Harigae, the Keyboard Player and coordinator of the Hyo Jin Moon Band, and found out he had exactly what we needed! He was planning a similar event in Korea and had already prepared the audio track of Hyo Jin Moon’s voice and guitar. This event in Korea had been canceled due to a massive earthquake that hit and cancelled all flights out of Japan. He also had some video footage of Hyo Jin Moon on stage in sync with the audio track. With Masahiko’s help, I solved the majority of my problems.
As for Hyo Jin Moon’s children, I wasn’t sure if they would be able to attend and perform in the concert. We sent the demo audio and video to them and prayed they could do it. America’s Memorial Day Weekend was Korea’s school exam season. As they had to be in school, Hyo Jin Moon’s family arrived the night before the concert and had a very limited rehearsal time the morning of. We couldn’t even practice all the songs! But at that rehearsal, just a few hours before the show, I finally knew that we could perform this concert as we planned! You can imagine their situation. They had just arrived the night before with jet lag, and they had to perform for the very first time with their father in front of a large audience. We had a lot of technical difficulties up until the last moment of the show. My production team worked so hard with me through many sleepless nights to prepare Hyo Jin Moon’s music and lyrics with graphics on screen, building and testing playback system, etc.
I watched this video hundreds of times as I was editing the video and mixing the audio with Roy. But even now when I watch this video I am moved to tears. Hyo Jin Moon’s music has the power to move people. In every concert, he shed tears as he sang.
As you watch and re-watch this concert video, we ask you to meditate on the meaning of Hyo Jin Moon’s tears as he sang the songs he wrote, some from the late 1980s. Please share your inspiration about the meaning of his tears, and any memories and/or testimonies you have with us.