Yang Bang-ean (Hangul: 양방언; hanja: 梁邦彦; born 13 June 1944 in Tokyo) is a Zainichi Korean composer, arranger, record producer, and pianist. His Japanese name is Kunihiko Ryo.
Yang Bang-ean was born in Tokyo, Japan as a youngest son of five children from a Zainichi Korean family. His late father (born in Jeju-do, South Korea), worked as a doctor; his mother (born in Sinuiju, North Korea) worked as a nutritionist at a hospital her husband owned. Yang started his early education at the Chōsen School (朝鮮学校, 조선학교), where he finished his primary and secondary education. He then proceeded to a Japanese high school, where he first got interested in foreign pops and rock music while listening to radio, which led to him joining a band. He continued his study at Nippon Medical School. It was the time when he first started playing the keyboard. The band traveled around holding concerts and releasing an album. After his graduation from Nippon Medical, he was appointed as a plastic surgeon in a hospital in Tokyo, but quit shortly after to become a musician.
His father named him Yang Bang-ean (양방언, 梁邦彦, Japanese name: Kunihiko Ryō), which has three meanings: Yang(梁), the symbol of a family line; Bang (邦), representing many countries, simply his dad's wish him to interact with many people worldwide; and Ean (彦), a common letter in Japanese names to respect Japanese sentiment as the family was living in the country. At the one of interviews in 2007, he stated that the only thing he regretted when he became a successful artist was that his father had to pass away before his success as a musician. Yang Bang-ean had been living with his nationality of North Korea over 30 years. However, he had to give up his citizenship to North Korean in 1999 as it was difficult to work overseas while holding a North Korean citizenship.
Yang Bang-ean first met his wife at the mates' party. He married her when he was in his mid-thirties after being in a relationship for approximately 10 years. Recently, he is living in Karuizawa, Nagano to relax from the busy city life and concentrate more on his music works.