Happy 8th of August, everybody – that means it’s 808 day, of course. So, to celebrate, let’s flash back to a 2012 video of Egyptian Lover assembling a beat in his hotel room. The LA rapper/producer was a big part of the early hip hop and electro roots of 808 use.
There’s something that still resonates in the beautiful simplicity of this Roland box. I’m struck when I hear it and watch in use that there’s something that seems futuristic – cold, even, but in a Stanley Kubrick 2001 sort of way. Of course, that doesn’t mean you need to be stuck in traditional 808 thinking. You can use today to build some entirely new drum machine, inspired by this simplicity – or abuse an 808 (or 808 sample set) into sounding completely different.
And, of course, I do think the TR-8 from Roland is spreading so fast partly because it really resurrects these sounds in a hands-on way.
Whatever you do, happy grooving this weekend.
And let’s muse over some vintage ads. More accuracy and less trouble.