Hirokazu "Hip" Tanaka is the composer behind some of the most iconic music in video games, having scored the likes of Dr. Mario and Earthbound. And like the rest of the video game community, he was shocked and saddened to learn that beloved Nintendo president Satoru Iwata had passed away at just 55 — so he wrote a song about it.
On his Soundcloud page, Tanaka released a new chiptunes track called simply "Dedicated to Satoru Iwata," and it's a breezy number that calls to mind some of Nintendo's best games, a number of which Iwata worked on as a programmer. In a wonderful touch, it's actually a remix of the theme from NES classic Balloon Fight; Iwata and Tanaka first met in 1983 while working on the game, and later were part of the same team on the cult role playing game Earthbound. Tanaka's tribute is part of a huge outpouring of support for Iwata, who in many ways embodied the very best of Nintendo.
Tanaka also previously released tribute songs for Hiroshi Yamauchi, Iwata's predecessor at Nintendo who died in 2013 at age 85.