Since the birth of Roland in 1972 their synthesizers, drum machines and effects have featured on some of the worlds biggest hits, with signature Roland sounds even shaping whole genres.
For three dates at the end of this month Roland present 'Synth Story' – an exhibition hosted by some legendary Roland users. Not only will you get an insight to some industry pros production and performance methods, they will also be taking questions and you'll also be able to get your hands on some classic Roland gear too! Experts include Richard Barbieri (Japan / Porcupine Tree), Graham Massey (808 State) and Jody Wisternoff (Way Out West).
Richard Barbieri's career in music started out with his New Wave group, Japan and more recently Porcupine Tree, playing the synth and keys. As part of a movement of synth-heavy pop music in the late 70s Richard knows his way around a synth. His love for Roland gear started with his first synthesizer, the System 700.
Graham Massey and his electronic music outfit named their band after Roland's TR-808 drum machine with 'State 808'. Whilst working with an amalgamation of electronic genres including House and Techno Roland's drum machines and synths played a vital role. The Roland TB-303 is a prime example of this: What started out as a bass synth and accompaniment tool for practising guitarists later found itself as the synth of Acid House. Producers such as 808-State pushed the TB-303 with varying resonance and filters to create an iconic electronic sound like no other.
Jody Wisternoff, is one half of UK progressive house duo Way Out West and has featured in the UK top 40 as well as a whole host of computer game sound tracks. Roland synths have featured a lot in their music right up to their last studio album We Love Machine. He relies on Roland classics such as the Juno-106 and the Jupiter-8 in his compositions.
Some of the classic Roland units available to play with on the day include: Jupiter-8, Juno-60, Jupiter-6, Jupiter-4, Juno-106, JX-8P, D-50, JD-800, JV-1080, JP-8000 and XV-5080. I'm sure all synth geeks out there will be drooling! You can attend the Roland Synth Story at the following dates:
26th November – The Roland Music Academy, Walsall College, Walsall
28th November – The Roland Music Academy, Ealing, Hammersmith & West London College
29th November – St Paul's Concert Hall, Huddersfield University, Huddersfield
Tickets are very limited so if you don't want to miss out book now via the Roland website!