[LAU] Electiric wind instrument on linux

David Kastrup dak at gnu.org
Thu Oct 28 14:48:18 CEST 2021

Paul Davis <paul at linuxaudiosystems.com> writes:

> On Wed, Oct 27, 2021 at 7:19 PM David Kastrup <dak at gnu.org> wrote:
>> Paul Davis <paul at linuxaudiosystems.com> writes:
>> +++-==================-============-============-======================================
>> ii  fluid-soundfont-gm 3.1-5.2      all          Fluid (R3) General MIDI
>> SoundFont (GM)
>> ii  fluid-soundfont-gs 3.1-5.2      all          Fluid (R3) General MIDI
>> SoundFont (GS)
> General MIDI soundfonts. Gag me with a spoon.

You'll be appalled to know that I am providing rhythmic rehearsal
support for our accordion orchestra (started during the time we had to
rehearse remotely due to health mandates) by writing up General MIDI
with LilyPond and replaying it on a Solton MS80, a GM2 device (and
button accordion keyboard arranger) from the 90s.  The device still
believes to be working with a SCSI hard disk and a 1.44MB floppy drive.

As embarrassing as it may sound, with regard to the playing experience
the progress in sound synthesis since then appears to make less of a
difference than a good keyboard amp (which doesn't have to be new

Oh, and of course the MIDI interface has optically isolated 31250bps
connections, a standard that has been clawing on merrily since its

For something like a wind controller played as a wind instrument, a
dedicated sound font (but possibly also a dedicated synthesizer) may be
able to put more of a focus on the implementation of wind instrument

In theory, a controller should not tie you to a particular instrument
family.  In practice, audience expectations do.  An accordion would be a
remarkably versatile keyboard controller if it didn't look like an
accordion.  So there is some point in specialising on the quality of
sound matching the visuals of your controller.  At least with an
accordion, you can sneak in "side instruments" (the left hand transmits
its own two channels), so there may be more of a point to have
reasonable general sound font support as backup.

But as a starting point, being able to hear something beats not being
able to hear something.

David Kastrup

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