In 1994, I spent a summer teaching English in Japan. It was at that time that I first became acquainted with the massively popular Japanese visual kei metal band X (aka X Japan). The best way to describe visual kei is that it is a Japanese adaptation of glam metal with a uniquely Japanese aesthetic such as the use of kabuki style in the use of makeup. X Japan are classically trained musicians and the heart of the band is Yoshiki, an extremely influential and revered musician, songwriter, and producer.
In the 1990s, X Japan became especially renowned for their sprawling ballads, and arguably the best is their 1993 hit “Tears.” The song was written by Yoshiki who also plays the piano in the performance. It tells the story of how, when he was ten years old, he lost his father to suicide and it conveys the indescribable grief and sense of loss of a child. “Tears” is the saddest song I know. That makes it perfect for Good Friday.