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MMD > Archives > February 2005 > 2005.02.04 > 07Prev  Next

MIDI File Editing Tools for Street Organ Music
By Harald Mueller

My experience is that you should _not_ somehow convert the MIDI file
to notes and then start editing, but that you write the music anew.
A few thoughts on this are on my web site:

A recent experience (which is not yet on the web site): I have arranged
the Allegro of the 3rd movement of G.F. Haendel's "Water Music" for 20er.
I had a MIDI file available -- an arrangement for a small orchestra.
Contrary to my own advice, I "sucked it" into Noteworthy and then
started to rewrite it.

Noteworthy is not very good in this respect; but this file came out
with quite useful notes: nice quarters and eighths, etc.  Still, after
a few hours (spread over days, because I hated to go near the score),
I threw the whole file (now somewhat edited) away -- the spread of
voices over lines was simply not what I needed and how the organ's
various "voices" could recreate the important aspects (e.g. the
"question and answer play" between violins and trumpets).

So I took a CD of a good performance and started to write the whole
thing from scratch, listening to some bars maybe 100 times.  Still,
this is _much_ faster, _much_ more fun and much more effective, because
you immediately write and arrange for the "orchestra" you have available
and in mind (even if it is only a 20er crank-organ).

I have been arranging now for 5 years or so and, almost always, the
MIDI-to-note way creates the worse arrangements and takes longer and
is much less fun than writing an arrangement from scratch.

Harald M. Mueller

 [ In years past I would sit awhile at the computer writing an
 [ arrangement for a small band, but finally -- every time -- I would
 [ admit that the computer's way is slower than the old-fashioned
 [ way.  So I'd shut off the computer, take a short recess, and then
 [ find a soft lead pencil and get to work hand-writing the notes
 [ on manuscript paper.  That's the most efficient way that I work.
 [ (And, because it's faster, it's more fun!   ;-)   -- Robbie

(Message sent Fri 4 Feb 2005, 07:35:00 GMT, from time zone GMT+0100.)

Key Words in Subject:  Editing, File, MIDI, Music, Organ, Street, Tools

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