Music Pioneer and founder of Roland, Ikutaro Kakehashi dies at age 87

Esteemed Japanese engineer, who oversaw the creation of many popular drum machines, including the iconic TR-808, has passed away.

Roland’s products were instrumental in the development of house, techno and hip-hop music, and were featured as widely as Marvin Gaye’s “Sexual Healing”, Whitney Houston’s “I Wanna Dance with Somebody,” and rapper Kanye West’s 2008 album 808s & Heartbreak.

Tributes have poured in from artists across many genres and in a farewell, colleague and Roland developer Tommy Snyders wrote: “He was a super funny, wonderful and gifted human being, and his contributions to the musical instrument world, and music, touched millions of people worldwide. RIP dear Taro.”

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