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Celebrate the great 808 with exclusive Roland Lifestyle merch

We’re giving away gift cards for 3 lucky readers to splurge on a range of goodies for 808 Day

  • Words: Amira Waworuntu | Images: Roland Lifestyle
  • 8 August 2023
Celebrate the great 808 with exclusive Roland Lifestyle merch

In 1980, Roland introduced the TR-808 Rhythm Composer, which quickly turned into a cultural sensation, shaping the sounds of hip hop and electronic genres.

Familiarly known as simply “the 808”, the instrument left an indelible mark on music. It can be heard on hits by diverse artists from years past to today and from a wide range of genres; Yellow Magic Orchestra, Kraftwerk, Plastikman, A Guy Called Gerald, Run DMC, Kanye West, Beastie Boys and more.

Though the 808’s drum booms, ticks and claps didn’t quite catch on due to their unrealistic sound when first released, the instrument slowly began garnering a cult following because of its distinct sound identity. According to the Musician’s Institute, it ultimately became “as important to hip-hop as the Fender Stratocaster was to the development of rock music.

Roland discontinued the 808 but only after distributing around 12,000 units and being used on more records than any other drum machine — it got succeeded by the TR-909 in 1983.

Enter Roland Lifestyle in late 2020 with a mission to bridge music, fashion and culture by sharing Roland’s iconic story through apparel and other collectables for music-enthused audiences to wear.

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From reversible flight jackets loaded with pockets, cotton-and-polyester hoodies in the colours plum and sandstone, to shirts with Roland’s archetypal imagery and one-size-fits-most caps, the collection of items allow aficionados to show their appreciation of the brand in style.

This year, Roland Lifestyle is auctioning a one-of-its-kind 808 Day 2023 Custom BMX Bike, commissioned from acclaimed graffiti artist and vintage BMX custom designer DUROTHETHIRD. All proceeds support a scholarship for one lucky student via the 1500 Sound Academy in Inglewood, California.

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“I believe music is a ladder for the soul to reach the highest realms and to participate in an initiative to help a student gain access to one of the best music schools in the world is an honour,” said Nathan Chandra, founder and creative director of Roland Lifestyle, adding how “It is exciting to work with the 1500 Sound Academy and Roland to help fund the dream of music for the next generation.”

The bike is crafted using authentic vintage components such as a 1993 Dyno Compe frame, GT power series cranks, Odyssey pedals, Dyno pretzel bars, Panaracer tires, and custom wheel hubs, along with various classic parts and accessories. The auction starts at 12:00 AM PDT (3:00 PM GMT+8) on August 8 and ends at 11:59 PM PDT (2:59 PM GMT+8) on August 16.

Roland Lifestyle has teamed up with Mixmag Asia to give away digital gift cards totalling up to USD700 for three lucky winners. Head over to our Instagram post for more details and browse through the entire range of Roland Lifestyle goodies here.

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