Back in 1980 Japanese electronics manufacturer Roland released one of the most important musical instruments ever, the TR-808. Although it only led a limited life, the 808 became world renowned, its signature low end bass and unique sounds redefining the musical landscape. From hip hop to acid house, trap to pop, it drove a multitude of musical genres and inspired countless musicians to create seminal records that have defined modern hip hop and electronic music.Even if you don’t already know the 808 by name, you will know its sound. It’s a timeless icon that has touched almost every genre of music imaginable with a sound that is as relevant today as it ever was.Featuring interviews with Afrika Bambaataa, Questlove, Beastie Boys, Pharrell Williams, David Guetta, Phil Collins, Richie Hawtin and many more, 808 is the inspirational story of how the 808’s ground-shaking beats changed the musical world.
By Alexander Dunn