Roland Founder Ikutaro Kakehashi, 1930-2017

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Above photo: Guitar Player Managing Editor Kevin Owens (left) with Kakehashi at Roland’s Hamamatsu R&D Center, September 2006.

The music industry lost a true legend when Roland founder Ikutaro Kakehashi passed away at 87 years old on April 1. 

"Legend has it that Mr. K — a workaholic of the first rank — built his home in the hills above the Hamamatsu R&D Center in Japan not just for the breathtaking views of beautiful Lake Hamana, but so that he could keep an eye on things even when he was asleep," says GP's Kevin Owens, who met Kakehashi while touring the facility in 2006. 

Our friends and co-workers at Electronic Musician have just uploaded this wonderful article on why Kakehashi was such a pioneering and pivotal figure in music technology.