Should We Pay For Midi Files When We Can Exchange Them For Free?

Discussion in 'General Sequencing' started by egoveas, Sep 25, 2002.

  1. Graeme

    Graeme New Member

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    Most of which is complete stuff and nonsense!

    Would anyone here go to work and not expect to get paid? Of course not. Yet there's a sizeable proportion who think they should get their midis for free. Why should they? Can anyone give one cogent argument for stealing the work of others?

    Leaving aside original compositions, most midis are based on a commercial piece of music. That means that there are royalties and other rights to be paid for. On top of that, anyone who has transcribed a piece to midi will know just how much work is involved. Would anyone here be prepared to do all that work and then give away the finished article - I think not.

    The truth of the matter is that few people have demonstrated any understanding of the the practicalities of the world. They want everything for nothing, but they would not be prepared to give away their own time or work in this way.

    They are nothing more than society's leeches and deserve to be treated as such.
  2. ane

    ane New Member

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    haha this reminds me of my friend's quote "music brings people together" ^.^
  3. rknrne

    rknrne Active Member

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    LONG LIVE MIDIBUDDY

    Long Live Free Midis
  4. fidelio

    fidelio New Member

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    I'll be happy to pay for so-called professional midi files if they are programmed so that the strumming acoustic guitar parts can be heard like real guitar with ordinary sound card such as the Sound Blaster.
    But I haven't heard or known of that such things.

    To Pro midi sequencers: go ahead and sequence songs like: george Harrison's My Sweet Lord, America's A Horse With No Name/Ventura Highway, The Doors' Hyacynth House (just the first 5 measures), Lobo's There Ain't No Way, or even some Kurt Cobain's stuff.

    Well, well, I'll pay dearly for a good job...
  5. musikman1

    musikman1 New Member

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    The Impossible Dream

    > I'll be happy to pay for so-called professional midi files if they are programmed so that the strumming acoustic guitar parts can be heard like real guitar with ordinary sound card such as the Sound Blaster.

    > But I haven't heard or known of that such things.

    It would seem if you want the MIDI sequences to sound like a real guitar, you'd need to invest in a more upscale sample player than a sound card. I can see your point, it would be nigh impossible to make a soundcard sound like a real guitar player.

    I do pro-level MIDI's for a living here. Most of my clients opt for a recorded audio of the MIDI's rather than try to play the stuff we have here.. It takes us 9 synths to properly play the pieces, and up to 48 MIDI channels packed full. Plus, we have a full pro-audio sound studio with all the toys (sonic/aural maximizers) and effects to make it sound great.

    Of course, I'm not doing the top-40 or cover type stuff. I envy the people that do rock, R&B, country, and that sort of music. It's fun and doesn't wear to you a nub to do them.

    My stuff is full orch/big band orch type stuff.. The project I'm working on now uses 92 tracks in each sequence. It's definately not for playing thru a sound card. Our polyphony (simultaneously played notes) can run up to 260 or so when the full orch is cranking in a dance production number, with the harps glissing and the stride piano running.. Biggest number in this particular show is 8:40 long and runs 510 measures.

    Of course, we hire in drummers, guitar players and reed players with MIDI-enabled equipment to play them in, so that they sound like "real players" on the final product. But, that again, will depend upon what YOU have on your end to play it. I use a $2K synth for just the guitar parts, it's certainly not going to sound the same on the Sound Blaster in your computer.

    It's hard for us keyboard guys to style in a decent swing drumset. Even cheating with Band-In-A-Box or something similar, it's just not the same as having a pro behind a Vdrum set wailing away!

    Of course when we're paying multiple session guys to put this stuff together, you can imagine that we aren't particularly inclined to give the stuff away.

    Our typical project takes roughly eight WEEKS full time of pounding, playing, and blowing in the parts. As this IS our "day job," if we don't sell'em, we don't keep the electric on. (grin)

    But, again, I'm in a different market. Most of my clients are pros, because I charge commensurate with the costs we have of producing our stuff.

    I can't blame folks for wanting to get it for free, but if free means cheating someone out of their hard work to pay the bills, I'd be less than enthusiastic.

    But even in my own case, if I get (for example) a Mall that wants a "Grand Opening" show, and we hire 10 singer/dancers, and a 4 piece band. Then I go to TranTrax or similar and buy the pieces, because I KNOW it will sound great (we aren't working for free, and the sponsors hiring us are expecting it to sound excellent!), AND I won't have to spend 2-3 weeks to sequence the stuff in myself (these shows are usually 15-20 pop/rock/country type numbers).

    But, again, I'm probably in a different category than most of you guys. I don't want to have to work for a boss, I want to make music for a living. I'm almost 50 and have managed to work full time in music since '74, but I DO still have my business (not music) degree to "fall back on" in case things don't work out. :)

    All my best,

    Rick
  6. Ardent

    Ardent New Member

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    Musikman

    You post just there was an inspirational read for me. I have made a concious decision to get into midi sequencing and, as someone just starting out, it's food for the soul to read how you are carving out a successful career in doing something you love.

    As you might have already guessed, I am labouring with my first midi sequences and there are so many tools - like the ones you mentioned - that I would love to purchase in order to provide some more realism to my work and cut down on the production effort.

    If you don't mind, I have a couple of questionsI'd like to ask of you:

    1) Like you, I don't want to work for THE MAN anymore and I want to get into providing professional midi sequences that cater for a partiular niche market, be my own boss and hopefully earn some money doing I'm genuinely interested in! How is midi sequencing as a career working out for you and do you enjoy an acceptable salary out of it?

    2) At the moment, I'm using Cubase SX 2 and, while it's a great piece of software, I want to compliment it with equipment such as a midi keyboard, a decent soundcard etc. I realise that if I'm going to do this properly I need the right tools. (I'm getting better at using Cubase but creating realistic rhythm guitar tracks, for example, is a real pain.) What software/hardware do you use and what advice might you have for someone like me starting out?

    Looking forward to hearing from you and any experiences you may have in this vocation.

    (Oh yeah, getting back on topic - if I was slaving away on midi sequences I wouldn't be too keen on them being distributed for nothing either. I used to gig for years and purchased many midi files for the purpose of backing tracks - if you need a great sounding sequence for a specific purpose you should have little problem paying for it)

    Ardent.
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2004
  7. CyberCat

    CyberCat Active Member

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    Right on! :thumbsup:

    When I make midis I don't want people to have to pay for them to listen, it supposed to be free. :D
  8. hiho

    hiho New Member

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    ardent,

    just a little note. try mamba (www.bluespook.com) for doing realistic guitar strums. i was amazed.
  9. midulsterrac

    midulsterrac New Member

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    i think we are just too used to getting illegally with no comeback. i've gotten midi files off the internet. some good, some bad. some of it seems to be professional files, and others something cobbled or banged together by somebody who can't play in time.

    the thing about the internet is that you can't guarantee what you are going to get. i remember visiting various fan and news sites of bands i liked and they were full or lies, rumours given as truth, etc, and i began to take what i saw with a pinch of salt from unrecognised websites.

    because sharing has become so prevalent, i imagine that there are some unscrupilous sites offering midis for sale are basically selling back stuff they got for free on the internet anyway. finding a site selling genuine professional midi files could be a hard task.

    i think the professionals have a right to charge for their work. after all, if they are legit, they will be paying an inclusive performance fee to the publisher on every sale
  10. Ardent

    Ardent New Member

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    hiho, thanks for the tip, checked out mamba. Not bad! Having tried it out, I still prefer to enter the guitar parts myself to give as much realism as possible.

    All the people on this thread who believe that midis should be free - can I ask you if you play live music and use midis as backing tracks? I somehow doubt you do because if you did you would appreciate a quality sequence and, rather than use countless free poor quality attempts on the web, would happily pay for it.
  11. Bob3

    Bob3 New Member

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    Don't want to buy Midis? Don't use this site. Simple. Iduuno why we're having this discussion.
  12. Graeme

    Graeme New Member

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    Well, as far as this particular site is concerned, it's not even real money! However, it has to be said that the best midi's around are (generally) the ones someone wants you to pay for.

    As for why we're having the discussion, I would have thought that was obvious - assuming you took the time and trouble to read through the whole thread.
  13. Gafo

    Gafo New Member

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    I think people buy midis because they don't know how to make midi. Personally i don't know nothig about notes and to compose musics so it's almost impossible to make a midi.
  14. KIM3020

    KIM3020 New Member

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    Free Midis

    I agree .. FREE is for me !!!:boink:
  15. Graeme

    Graeme New Member

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    So why would you want one?

    Midi is a musician's tool - if you're not a musician, there's no real need for you to know anything about it, never mind actually needing to own any midi files.
  16. marthaannd

    marthaannd New Member

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    I agree...with both sides. If you have the talent and ability to create your own midis, then there is something there to be proud of, but for those of us who are not so handy with the keyboard, or the computer and can spend four months trying to peck out a few notes....your only other alternative is to look on the web. The bad part about it is, those few chosen songs that for instance, the more recent, popular party, butt kickin songs are hard to find...also the patriotic but kickin songs, hard to find unless you pay for them. I am all for pooling our resources and sharing...why do you think I am here? :laugh:
  17. Graeme

    Graeme New Member

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    Maybe I'm missing something here, but why would anybody who only listens to music (as opposed to making it) have any reason to have midi files in the first place?

    In itself, midi is an incredibly poor medium for listening to music - you'd be better off with an audio recording.
  18. marthaannd

    marthaannd New Member

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    SOME of the midis are poor quality, I agree, but many of them are actually pretty good versions of the original music, and those few good ones are nice to use for karaoke nite. Some of us can't afford high tech entertainment so we resort to sitting around a fire, drinking a few beers and eventually drag out the microphones and laptop and listen to each other howl. It is a good stress reliever and like I said, after a few beers, you can even pull out some of the really BAD midis and pass them off as long as they have the words on them! This is something that we can AFFORD to do, the kids like it, it keeps them home and off the streets, good clean fun....might not be, as you said, the greatest quality rendition of a song, but it works for me!
  19. Graeme

    Graeme New Member

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    Yup - seems like a legitimate enough reason to me :) .
  20. marthaannd

    marthaannd New Member

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    By the way, I am not TOTALLY musically impaired....I do dabble with the keyboard somewhat but only play music by ear, but I do okay. Sometimes I use the midis to help me learn just a little bit more...we also have a drummer and two guitarists in the family who like to play along with the midis...it is good practice for them. (BTW my brother has a Yamaha kick butt keyboard and he plugs these midis into it, and something amazing happens to them, they don't sound nearly as cheezy as they do on the computer) Sorry, there I go sounding all hillbilly-ish and all again. ;)

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