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MMD > Archives > January 2003 > 2003.01.11 > 01Prev  Next

The Fascination of the Tracker Bar
By Philippe Rouillé

Dear MMDs,  I liked very much the article by Jean Nimal about the
Fascination of the Tracker Bar.

At some point, Jean writes :

> Personally, this is sufficient for me not to be attracted by MIDI
> systems, as I feel that part of the feast is forgotten!  Never mind
> -- I am sure some one is going to outfit a computer screen to
> represent paper running by!

Actually, that is already done in some concerts.  I attended these
in the past years at several "reproducing pianos" concerts, given by
our Swedish-French specialist, Douglas Heffer of Montmartre, in the
large auditorium in Le Louvre museum in Paris.

At least one video camera pointed on the "tracker bar" and the many
hundred people who attended the concerts were able to see the "flowing"
of the punched roll on a very large screen.  Absolutely fascinating...

Another video camera may also transmit to another screen the movements
of the keys on the piano keyboard -- without pianist.  The same system
may be used on a cylinder (organ or musical box), but it is rarely as
fascinating, excepting in some very good musical boxes where the
"waves" of the teeth may be spectacular in a mandoline arrangement,
or chromatic ascents or arpeggios.

But with several tunes on the same cylinder, you cannot really follow
the music from the disposition of the pins or bridges, and so you loose
most of that fascination -- the past, present and future all together
-- that Jean Nimal spoke about.

With best regards,

Philippe Rouille  (Paris, France)

(Message sent Sat 11 Jan 2003, 10:00:29 GMT, from time zone GMT+0100.)

Key Words in Subject:  Bar, Fascination, Tracker

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