Roland TR-808 Rhythm Composer
In the worlds of Techno, House, Hip-Hop and R&B, the Roland TR-808 is an indispensable machine. Its signature sound, the booming bass drum that has created the groove of hits by everyone from Marvin Gaye to Afrika Bambaata to 808 State and is currently one of the most frequently used sounds in modern music.
Despite its current iconic status, when it was released in 1980, the 808 was not a top seller by any means. There were lots of people who didn’t like the simplistic sound in preference to more expensive machines such as the digitally-sampled LinnDrum. However, producers in the underground acid-hose music scene leaned towards the TR-808 and the entire Roland product line, including the TB-303, SH-101 and TR-909, giving these boxes their iconic status and modern day price tags to match.