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Allen Organ - midi files - performance and editing

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  • Allen Organ - midi files - performance and editing

    Hi Forum,

    I am interested in the electronic files produced when recording a performance on an Allen Bravura organ. I assume these are midi files.

    If these are midi files, I have a couple of questions:

    1) Is there documentation anywhere about these midi files, including format and channel assignment, export/import, and recommendations for software tools to edit these files?

    2) Is there interest in these forums to create a library of performances (uploaded by forum members or other sources)?

    These two questions probably could be on separate threads; depending on responses, that could be done.

    My skills are on the computer side (e.g., developing some test "performance" files for optimizing speaker placement in our church), and not so much in organ performance - so midi file format and software tools would be very helpful.

    On the other question, though, I would love to have some performances of the major Bach organ literature, to demo this new Allen organ that we have - something beyond the library of hymns and other demo files that come with the instrument.

    If anyone has some performance files that he or she would be willing to share with me, but would rather not share them widely, please send me a PM. This would be very much appreciated.

    (Our Allen Bravura is an L451DK).

    Awesome forum, thanks.

    Cheers,
    -Bruce

  • #2
    About any tracker program ought to be able to open a midi file. I've used Rosegarden for that sort of thing, but I think it may be Linux-only.

    That being said, I vastly prefer staff notation to the tracker paradigm, and use MuseScore for most of my composition (although Rosegarden has staff notation support, it isn't as good as MuseScore's). MuseScore does have a Windows version. It will also open midi files and convert them to staff notation.

    That being said, it is quite difficult to satisfactorily auto-convert midi into staff notation. Not only can minor timing variations in a live performance mess up the note values severely, but your notes often won't be grouped how you want. It takes a good bit of human intervention to convert the imported midi into a proper score, so much that (in my opinion) one is better off scoring the piece by hand to begin with rather than trying to convert from midi.
    1914 Estey Parlor Organ. 196x Allen T-12a "Special" (MIDI VPO project). Digital piano. Various guitars. Autoharp. Banjo. Bowed saw. Musical Cat.

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    • #3
      Thanks for your input on midi.

      This topic (midifile format and editing) has an excellent write-up from smithge31419 here:

      https://organforum.com/forums/filedata/fetch?id=614047

      Thanks. I'll try the suggestions in the PDF.

      Still looking for more on midifiles, and establishing a library of performance midifiles on the forum.

      Thanks.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Bruce.Simonson View Post
        1) Is there documentation anywhere about these midi files, including format and channel assignment, export/import, and recommendations for software tools to edit these files?
        Bruce,

        For documentation, any Allen Organ owners manual and/or Allen's MIDI Installation manual would have that information. As far as channel assignments, all you really need to do is re-map the channel tables in the software you're using.

        Originally posted by Bruce.Simonson View Post
        2) Is there interest in these forums to create a library of performances (uploaded by forum members or other sources)?
        I believe interest may be limited because people may not want to give away their performances for free. Alternately, if they've entered their work in a notation program and exported it to MIDI, that also represents quite an investment of time with no return either. Then there are also the performing rights and copyright issues that follow a person's investment of time in creating the files.

        As already stated, performance MIDI files vary greatly from notation MIDI files. There are also other sites on the Internet that provide MIDI files for classical music, but they don't distinguish between those MIDI files of performance vs. notation derivation. Performance files generally aren't quantized for notation purposes and are a mishmash of 16th and 32nd notes tied together over measure breaks, etc. Notation files generally lack expression and "humanness," if you will.

        Best with your endeavors.

        Michael
        Way too many organs to list, but I do have 5 Allens:
        • MOS-2 Model 505-B / ADC-4300-DK / ADC-5400 / ADC-6000 (Symphony) / ADC-8000DKC
        • Lowrey Heritage (DSO-1)
        • 9 Pump Organs, 1 Pipe Organ & 4 Pianos

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