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Published on May 17th, 2019 | by Jerry Doby

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Roland Announces Collaboration with 1500 Sound Academy and Acclaimed Production Collective 1500 or Nothin’

Roland announces an ongoing collaboration with 1500 Sound Academy, a game-changing music production training program founded and brought to life by GRAMMY®-winning R&B/pop singer/songwriter James Fauntleroy and GRAMMY-winning producer/musician Larrance “Rance” Dopson from the acclaimed production collective 1500 or Nothin’. The academy functions as a gateway between school and career by providing instruction in current and emerging business practices of the music business. Located in Inglewood, CA, the community-driven academy has opened enrollment for their next 6-month certificate program. Commencing June 10th, the exclusive program will enroll 32 students and feature a high level of involvement from Roland and its associated brands.

GRAMMY-winning 1500 Sound Academy guest lecturers will include James Fauntleroy and Larrance “Rance” Dopson (Bruno Mars, Justin Timberlake, Mariah Carey, Ariana Grande, Elle Mai), Timbaland (Justin Timberlake, Aaliyah, Missy Elliott), and many others. The Avila Brothers (Usher, Gwen Stefani, Janet Jackson, Mary J Blige) have also teamed up with Rance and James at the Academy. IZ Avila, who is also serving as the academy’s general manager, notes, “This close partnership with Roland will allow a manufacturer component to be integrated into 1500 Sound Academy’s educational experience at its core. Our students will have access to the high-level knowledge and lineage that Roland can directly provide.”

Specifically, the curriculum of this next session of the 1500 Sound Academy has been curated to include detailed instruction on Roland and BOSS products (including Roland synths, drum machines, DJ instruments, MIDI controllers and other studio tools), the Roland Cloud (students receive a free Roland Cloud subscription while enrolled), Roland Pro AV products and more. Central to this proximity to Roland products is the “Roland Room,” a demo facility specifically created for Roland and BOSS products on-site at the 1500 Academy, and Roland’s V-MODA headphones are the official headphones of the academy. Students will have access to tours of the Los Angeles Roland facilities as well as internship opportunities.

Roland CEO and Managing Partner Jun-ichi Miki remarks, “Roland’s mission to inspire the enjoyment of creativity has not changed since the company was founded over 40 years ago. Our goal to develop even better musical instruments and to create more opportunities and places for people to enjoy the experience of making music has led us to partner with the 1500 Sound Academy, a trailblazing educational institution.”

“Roland has a long legacy at the forefront of music technology and in the educational space,” notes Brian Alli, Roland’s vice president of global influencer relations. “Our partnership with the 1500 Sound Academy is Roland’s way to continue connecting with a diverse group of students, teachers, influencers, creators and those interested in growing within the music industry. The founders of the 1500 Sound Academy believe in the cooperative learning experience that Roland shares. Our support of the academy will go beyond products; it will be a deep dive into education, innovation and a willingness to open our own doors to students who are curious about the music industry from the manufacturers perspective.”

James Fauntleroy remarks, “Very few companies will ever become so ubiquitous that the name of one of their products becomes the name of anything similar to it – like Johnson & Johnson’s ‘BAND-AID®’ (they’re technically ‘bandages’ not ‘BAND-AIDS’). The 808 started as a drum machine in a line of drum machines made by Roland that featured more sounds than just the one kick drum sound that has become the most influential and pervasive sound of modern music. ‘808’ is now a household term to describe any tuned, low-end distortion frequency, and this sound is used in every genre imaginable from hip hop, where its notoriety came from, to country music. To have Roland as a partner in our mission to teach people to grow beyond their expectations and become visionaries is seriously a tremendous honor and privilege – the 1500 Sound Academy team and I can’t wait to teach our students the history and ultra diverse products Roland has to offer as we prepare them with all the tools we and those before us have come to depend on.”

Larrance “Rance” Dopson adds, “I’ve been studying the development of Roland products since I was a child. Roland is a family of individuals who understand the importance of improvement – their ability to adapt to the progression of sound and be introspective as a company is invaluable. Our entire team is more than excited to announce this partnership with Roland as we continue to push the narrative of intellectual development and what it means to be great.”

Future Roland involvement will take many shapes, including helping to outfit a state-of-the-art recording studio adjacent to 1500 Sound Academy’s main facility.

For more information, please visit Roland.com and 1500SOUND.ACADEMY.


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About the Author

Editor-in-Chief of The Hype Magazine, GRAMMY Member and internationally published arts & entertainment journalist. Member of the U.S. Department of Arts and Culture as well as the United States Press Corps.



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