Your MIDI recordings are spread over three or more tracks and channels, which makes it difficult to play them on an outboard device or piano that only plays one at a time. Why do you do this?

Good question. Even though I have largely abandoned MIDI on the site, I will answer this in regard to my legacy files which remain. For those who are less digitally inclined I'll try to answer what that means, and then why I do it. MIDI (Musical Instrument Digital Interface) was designed to be a general standard for the music industry in terms of hooking up computer technology with varying musical instruments. There are other protocols used, but virtually all digital instruments will accept MIDI input and produce MIDI output. For each MIDI port (an outlet that allows for the transfer of signal) up to sixteen channels of information can be sent. This allows for separation of individual instruments by sending the signal for one instrument over one channel. These signals can also be spread to as many as 16 ports with 16 channels per port, allowing up to 256 channels of information at one time. I utilize this technology even for simple MIDI piano recordings to enhance the sound.

Since the visitors to who still access MIDI listen to it through their sound cards (or purchase my audio recordings to support the site), I try to accommodate them. The figure of those with sound cards listening through computer or hi-fi speakers is over 70%, with the remainder on other devices. Since many sound card MIDI patches still don't create a stereo or multi-channel piano sound, I create it for them. By separating bass, mid and treble notes into different channels, I can control whether they come out of the left, center or right of your speaker system. As surround sound brings movie sound out of your television, this enhancement helps to provide increased spatial effects from your computer. Based on a plethora of comments e-mailed back to me, the efforts to provide this enhancement are well worth my trouble.

So if you are encountering difficulty with this methodology, try the following. If you don't have a MIDI editor, obtain one. It is a useful tool, and there are many available for free or at low cost. The Cakewalk Web Site has a number of low-cost products you can download. Open up the MIDI file in a MIDI editor and change the channel designation for tracks two and three to channel 1. All notes will now be routed through a single channel, providing better coverage for outboard instruments that are not GS-MIDI compatible. Or better yet, get the CD or cassette recordings of my work, which have been tailored for the best possible sound as intended by the artist, and help to support the site even further!