Tokyo Kosei Wind Orchestra
• Founded 1960
It's fairly rare for an essentially classical outfit to make its way onto the charts reliably, but the Tokyo Kosei Wind Orchestra (originally named the Tokyo Kosei Symphonic Band, helping explain the high brass content in their music) have done just that over the years, contributing to works across a series of genres. While the band was created with an eye toward the classical, it grew over the years, peaking under conductor Frederick Fennell (who took the reins in 1984). With Fennell, the band took on additional work in the realm of symphonic pop -- receiving high acclaim -- as well as soundtrack and theme music performances with popular content. Given this more popular content, the band made a niche for itself, tightly holding the crown for '70s-style brass-heavy, high-action theme music. Continuing to perform and record prodigiously (the band has released over 300 albums), the band began touring internationally in the late '80s, continuing through Fennell's death in 2004, passing the baton to Douglas Bostock and taking a renewed interest in European classical music at the same time.