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featured Wiki of the Day Episode 165
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Tue, 2017-Oct-17 00:42 UTC
Length - 3:06
Welcome to featured Wiki of the Day where we read the summary of the featured Wikipedia article every day.
The featured article for Tuesday, 17 October 2017 is Roland TR-808.
The Roland TR-808 Rhythm Composer, often referred to as the 808, is a drum machine introduced by the Roland Corporation in 1980 and discontinued in 1983. It was one of the earliest programmable drum machines, with which users could create their own rhythms rather than having to use preset patterns.
Unlike its nearest competitor, the more expensive Linn LM-1 Drum Computer, the 808 is completely analog, meaning its sounds are generated non-digitally via hardware rather than samples (prerecorded sounds). Launched when electronic music had yet to become mainstream, the 808 received mixed reviews for its unrealistic drum sounds and was a commercial failure. Having built approximately 12,000 units, Roland discontinued the 808 after its semiconductors became impossible to restock, but units remain in use around the world. It was succeeded in 1984 by the TR-909.
Over the course of the 1980s, the 808 attracted a cult following among underground musicians for its affordability, ease of use, and idiosyncratic sounds, particularly its deep, "booming" bass drum. It became a cornerstone of the emerging electronic, dance, and hip hop genres, popularized by early hits such as Marvin Gaye's "Sexual Healing" (1982) and Afrika Bambaataa and the Soulsonic Force's "Planet Rock" (1982). The 808 was eventually used on more hit records than any other drum machine; its popularity with hip hop in particular has made it one of the most influential inventions in popular music, comparable to the Fender Stratocaster's influence on rock. Its sounds continue to be used as samples included with music software and modern drum machines.
This recording reflects the Wikipedia text as of 00:42 UTC on Tuesday, 17 October 2017.
For the full current version of the article, go to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roland_TR-808.
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This has been Kendra. Thank you for listening to featured Wiki of the Day. If you enjoyed this podcast, you can find our archive, and our sister podcasts popular Wiki of the Day and random Wiki of the Day at wikioftheday.com. Subscribe and tell your friends to listen as well!
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