Behind some of the greatest music of the 80’s and early 90’s—particularly in hip-hip—was the Roland TR-808 drum machine. And a new documentary, exclusively available on Apple Music, is detailing just how influential it was.
The 808 music documentary, directed by Alex Noyer, features interviews with hip-hop & pop legends about their experiences with the TR-808, which has been described as a tool that “revolutionized music”. It was used on more hit records than any other drum machine before or after—with artists from Madonna & Rick James to Eminem and Michael Jackson incorporating the 808’s sounds into their music.
Noyer holds court with artists such as Pharrell, The Beastie Boys, Questlove, Phil Collins, and iconic hip-hip producer Rick Ruben for the 808 documentary. The film was co-produced by American record producer Arthur Baker, who himself considers the TR-808 “the rock guitar of hip-hop”.
808 debuted at SXSW in 2015, and hit Apple Music on December 9th. For those who are not Apple Music subscribers, the 808 music documentary is expected to hit iTunes on the 16th.