The 6 Best Documentaries About TR-808

Jul 18, 2023 | Best Of, History

From its inception on the Roland TR-808 drum machine to its status as one of the most influential pieces of music technology ever created, the 808 has a story that is both captivating and inspiring. And now, thanks to some incredible documentaries, we can go even deeper into its fascinating history. From discovering how it changed the sound of modern music to exploring how it still influences producers today, these documentaries offer an in-depth look at the 808’s influence on our culture. Whether you’re a music producer or just a fan of good stories, these documentaries about the 808 are sure to give you new insights into its incredible story.



Are you curious to learn about the iconic TR 808 drum machine? This documentary dives deep into the story of how this groundbreaking instrument was created and why it has become a staple in so many genres of music. With interviews from producers, musicians, and engineers who have used or been shaped by the TR808, director Shaun Bivens tells an inspiring tale that will change your perspective on electronic music production. Don’t miss out on this amazing opportunity to experience “The Untold Story” behind one of the most influential pieces of musical equipment ever made!



Are you interested in learning more about the iconic TR 808 drum machine? Look no further! In this documentary, Shaun Bivens takes viewers on a journey through the untold story of the legendary instrument. From its creation to its impact on music and culture, get ready to learn all there is to know about the amazing TR 808!


3. 808 – The Movie (2015)

808 – The Movie is a documentary that explores the iconic TR-808 drum machine and its impact on modern music. Featuring interviews with artists such as Damon Albarn, Arthur Baker, and Afrika Bambaataa, this film dives deep into the history of Roland’s revolutionary instrument to show how it changed music forever. Get ready for an immersive journey through time as you uncover the secrets behind one of the most influential pieces of technology ever created.


4. 808 The Movie – Phil Collins (Full Interview)

Discover the incredible story of the 808 Drum Machine, a revolutionary piece of technology that changed music forever. Featuring interviews and commentary from Arthur Baker, Pharrell, David Guetta, Phil Collins, Lil Jon, Afrika Bambaataa , Norman Cook (Fatboy Slim), Rick Rubin, Diplo and Goldie. Learn about this groundbreaking instrument and it’s impact on modern music production!


5. BBC Radio 1 Stories – Roland TR-808 TR-909 TB-303

Roland’s TR-808, TR-909 and TB-303 have been integral to the development of dance music. BBC Radio 1’s Kutski documents their history in this documentary, featuring interviews with some of rap and dance’s most influential figures. DJ Premier talks about using the 808 while Richie Hawtin shares his experience squeezing every last drop out of all three instruments as Plastikman. Find out how these humble toys formed the backbone of rap in the 80s (and now again in 2013) and if those who created them had any idea that they would be used as they were! This is a must watch for anyone interested in understanding more about Roland’s genre defining trio of sound boxes.


6. Talking Synths: The Roland TR-808

Celebrate 808 day with Syntaur’s Talking Synths podcast! Sam and Lucas compare the legendary Roland TR-808 analog drum machine to a newer Roland TR-8, discussing the pros and cons of each. Get a behind the scenes look at some of the best documentaries about 808s, as well as tips for finding great deals on synth parts – new and vintage – from!



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David B