The Verge went whole hog with their coverage of the NAMM conference. Included among it, this tale from Don Lewis of how he came to co-create the most famous drum machine of all, the 808:
“I opened it up, it had diodes and stuff going all over — we became instant friends. I begged him for years to come up with a programmable rhythm unit because I got tired of having to change out the patterns the hardware way — it was hard!” Kakehashi was listening. In 1972 Kakehashi formed Roland Corporation and hired Don to work on projects that eventually became the CompuRhythm CR-68, and in 1980, the iconic TR-808, a drum machine upon which the entire history of modern dance music was built.