Roli offer innovative and groundbreaking musical interfaces that push the boundaries of creative expression within both live performance studio & songwriting environments.
ROLI are easily one of the most innovative new companies to come out of the last decade in the music industry. Roli like to question the status quo of how we make music. They push the boundaries of technology within music and offer new tools for us to create music using the huge range of software instruments and effects now available to musicians.
ROLI was founded in 2009 by American-born musician, designer and entrepreneur Roland Lamb. As a graduate student of design at the London Royal College of Art, he designed the first design concept and prototype of what was to become the Seaboard grand as a response to the inherent design limitations of a traditional piano keyboard. He was a keen jazz pianist who wanted to have the same control over timbre, pitch and expression that other stringed and wind instruments are capable of. His breakthrough "keywave surface" design is the foundation of the Seaboard and ROLI as a company.
Since then the Seaboard concept has built into a range of different keyboards using the Keywave technology. The Seaboard GRAND was awarded 'Design of the Year' award by the Design museum of London and the series is offering new ways of performing live and recording in the studio using virtual instruments and softsynths.
In 2016 ROLI announced their new ROLI Blocks System. Using the expressive touch technology, found in the Seaboard, this new modular system offered a brand new way to create music where lightpad blocks could be snapped together to create an expandable system of pressure sensitive tiles.
ROLI instruments are used by a wide range of artists and professional producers from Grimes to Hanz Zimmer and recently named Pharrell Williams as Chief Creative Officer at the Company.
The Seaboard series has competely changed how we can create music with technology. As a keyboard player, live or in the studio, you're often playing a wide range of instruments other than traditional piano and electric keyboards. unfortunately most keyboards or don't have the functionality to recreate the same expression characteristics as strings or wind instruments, so using virtual instruments and sampled instruments often fall short unless you meticulously programme it in using a MIDI editor.
The Seaboard technology completely changes this, with the ability to create vibrato, slide between notes, and create all those subtle nuances that make a software instrument sound realistic. The seaboard is now available in a compact producers controller setup called the Seaboard Rise or the full 88 note Seaboard Grand with built-in sounds.