Which musicians of the last two decades have had the most lasting impact on music as we know it today?
In terms of Asian music (especially in it becoming acknowledged worldwide), I would say X Japan. They have inspired younger generations to create music and make Asian music more global. I think they were absolutely necessary in creating awareness of Asian talent, especially in America. Now we have a ton of crossover talents like Rain making it big in the States. Still, I think X Japan kick-started the Asian sensation. =) hide-sama may be gone, but his spirit lives on and continues to inspire people. This is a band that has been to hell and back. I think Yoshiki will always be a big-time player in the music industry. Wherever he goes, whatever he does, he makes magic through music. He braids classical and rock and works with many different musicians, even pop musicians like Pink (whom I love, by the way). I would really like to see more strong, talented Asian bands make it here in the States, and I think that is starting to happen.