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MMD > Archives > February 2012 > 2012.02.16 > 11Prev  Next

Modernizing the Ampico Reproducing Piano
By John A. Tuttle

Hi All,  Paul Meehan wanted to know about playing modern music on
his Ampico.  While there is a great add-on system that allows the
use of MIDI files to play the piano, what's hard to find are good
MIDI files of modern music for piano.

I did some quick searching around the net and found plenty of free
MIDI files of modern music, but they are generally not piano music.
Rather, they are multi-track MIDI files that use a variety of
different sounds.

Naturally, the file can be edited, tracks could be combined, etc.,
so you end up with a one track piano file.  Just for grins, I did
that to a file I got for free at MidiZone.  It's Maroon 5 "Moves
Like Jagger".  I have the original file at 

The 'piano' file is at 

It took me about 20 minutes to remove the various control settings
that were in the 10 channels, remove the drum track, and combine all
the remaining tracks into one track with a piano sound.

I think this is fairly typical of what modern music will sound like
on a player piano unless it is painstakingly arranged specifically
for the player piano.  And even then, it will be, in my opinion,
extremely boring!

As to why I think it's unlikely that you'll find good MIDI files of
modern music for the player piano, I believe there are two basic
reasons.  One, there's probably very little money to be gained by
such a project.  Two, there would likely be copyright issues.

John A Tuttle
Brick, New Jersey, USA

(Message sent Wed 15 Feb 2012, 23:28:04 GMT, from time zone GMT-0500.)

Key Words in Subject:  Ampico, Modernizing, Piano, Reproducing

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