The next big Roland product unveiling isn’t at a trade show – it’s on the Internet. At a 24-hour streaming “online musical instruments festival,” the Japanese giant is promising a bunch of new stuff (30+).

The date is an auspicious one for the company – September 9, or 909. And sure enough, they’re also calling it a celebration of 33 years of their legendary drum machine.

In addition to the product unveilings, they’re live in a bunch of cities with artist performances and other events, too – LA, NYC, Toronto, Paris, Brussels, Tokyo, and here in Berlin, among others. (The global south gets left out of that, which is a bit unfortunate!)

We are always on the Internet, as it were, but we’ll be catching up with Roland in Berlin, I hope – in person, even.

Watch the trailer for more:

As for what to expect in products, this is structured an awful lot like a Roland press conference. (And with all due respect to Roland the brand, whose products I often love, I do … rather hope this is very different from such a press conference, which is better geared for dealers than the rest of us.)

They’re doing launches in multiple categories – synths, keyboards, DJ stuff, but also video equipment. In other words, it’s all CDM territory (even Create Digital Motion).

And this video shows just how excited they are about the 909 bit. It seems new AIRA stuff is a definite go. I still wouldn’t put it past the company to do a reissue of the 909, by the way, given used prices – and given that Roland has done all sorts of things we would have never imagined until recently. (Eurorack?!)

But given the 909 date, and the fact that 909 sounds were already available for the AIRA TR-8 machine, some sort of new 909 product seems a no-brainer to me. I’m guessing something either called the TR-9 as a successor to the hit AIRA drum machine, or a 909-based product in the more compact, ready-to-play Boutique line.

We’ll be watching. And in case you don’t want to watch the whole stream, we’ll of course also get news for you as soon as we can.

I have no idea what it means to redefine the future, exactly. I’m going to put off figuring that out until tomorrow. Oh… wait.

  • Dubby Labby

    New categories?

    • Darren E Cowley


      • Steve Conrad
        • Darren E Cowley

          bet it’s not that… There’s product A and B on the Roland Website… Voodoo might be one, but whats the other??

          • Dubby Labby

            Turntable groovebox. I was praying for this and Roland has variphrase and loopers… Fingers crossed!

    • Polite Society

      Terraforming. If the video is anything to go by.

  • The Fantastix

    I have read rumors on another site about a TR-909 “Boutique” style… Would love something like that, more akin to the Korg Volca series than the TR8 (tiny standalone single-tasking battery powered machines)

    • Dante

      Volca synths are great but lil better build please

  • Alessandro Automageddon

    I’d love a revamped SP808…

    • Dubby Labby

      With Variphrase please.

  • Nice teaser!

  • dfvink

    that site shows more 404 than 909.. 😉

  • chaircrusher

    I for one would welcome an instrument from Roland — or any other manufacturer — that really amounted to a new tool for music making, one that doesn’t simply rehash the achievements of 30 & 40 years ago. Something intuitive and easy to get into, but with some depths worth exploring.

    It does seem though that it would be a risky move. Anytime people try it, it’s rarely a hit, because the largest part of the market is amateurs with disposable income that want to do the things they’ve heard the pros already do.

    • Dubby Labby


  • Loowfizzz

    the furniture redefined!

  • DJ Hombre

    On another site there’s this from a good source;
    “Roland is putting out a black turntable with green highlights that interfaces with Aira. It also has an output section that gives the user control over cutoff, resonance, and tuning pulled out of the 303. When connected to other Aira gear, the turntable allows the user to scratch output audio – including sequences – in a kind of slip mode.”


  • DJ Hombre

    Roland & Serato partnership just announced.

    Very interesting. Is Roland taking on Pioneer?