Richard Barbieri started his musical career with the group Japan in 1976.
Although initially perceived as a ‘hyped’ band, Japan went on to record five studio albums culminating in the ground-breaking ‘Tin Drum’ which stayed in the UK charts for a year. The painstaking approach to synthesiser programming by Richard Barbieri and David Sylvian and the original rhythmic patterns of Steve Jansen and Mick Karn produced a sound that remains original to this day. They were the one of the most successful chart bands in Europe and Asia in 1982 despite the increasingly experimental nature of their music.
The band split up at the height of their popularity after a world tour in 1983.
In 1983/4/5 Richard contributed to David Sylvian and Mick Karn solo albums.
Soon after, he started a long musical association with Steve Jansen, which produced 6 collaborative albums.