Otomo Yoshihide is one of the most well known Japanese musicians and composers in the experimental music field. Performing with guitar, turntables, and electronics he first came to international prominence in the 1990s as the leader of the noise rock group Ground Zero, and has since worked in a variety of contexts, ranging from free improvisation to noise, jazz and contemporary classical. A pioneering figure in onkyo and electroacoustic improvisation scenes, Otomo has been featured on important records on labels such as Improvised Music from Japan and Erstwhile. He studied at the Meiji University from 1979, where he studied ethnomusicology, concentrating on the Japanese pop music of World War II and the development of musical instruments during the Chinese Cultural Revolution. Samples of instruments and music from this period are found in several of his works. He played in rock bands while at college, but turned to improvisation after discovering free jazz and free improvisation musicians like guitarist Derek Bailey, saxophonist Kaoru Abe, and guitarist Masayuki Takayanagi.