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Revised
05 July
2000

Troubador Tech

Frequently Asked Questions

This entire Web site came about from my desire to help quell some of the confusion and misinformation which abounds on the Web, on Usenet, and on Internet mailing lists. Much of it was originally written in direct response to questions I received in email. Most of the answers I can offer are already in these pages. If you still have unanswered questions, the following steps may help you find the answers:

  • Read the FAQ and answers below. These are the questions I most frequently receive in email. Since they are answered here, I feel no obligation to answer them in email.
  • If your question is related to MIDI guitar, please check out the MIDI Guitar Mailing List. You can search the archive of past messages, or subscribe to the list and post your question. Your chances of obtaining an answer are much better than if you simply ask me, because the hundreds of list members include many people who know a lot more than I do.
  • If your question has to do with working as a one-person band, please consider posting it in the One Person Band Forum. (Registration is required in order to post, but it's fast and free.) I'll see it there as surely as I would in my email; there's also a chance that it will be seen there by someone else with a better answer than I could offer.

Of course, you may always email me. Due to the phenomenal breadth and depth of my ignorance, I may well not have an answer. Due to personal circumstances, I may not even be able to reply. If you do write me and I don't respond, please don't take it personally.


What do you mean by "one-person band?"

My MIDI guitar doesn't track properly-- what's wrong?

I want a RoCaMaha XTC-69-- where can I find one?

I want to sell my dead mint RoCaMaha XTC-69-- what's it worth?

I just got a great deal on a used RoCaMaha XTC-69 -- where can I get a manual?

My beloved RoCaMaha XTC-69 is broken-- where can I get it fixed?

"Could you send me some MIDI sequences done with MIDI guitar, so I can hear how they compare with my keyboard MIDIs?"


What do you mean by "one-person band?"

The term "one-person band" (along with its ancestor, "one-man band") has acquired widespread metaphoric use in recent years-- try using it as the term for a Web search to see many examples. On this Web site, I use it literally:

For purposes of this Web site, a one-person band is a person who plays two or more instruments simultaneously, and who creates every sound heard in a performance during the performance itself.

Obviously, this definition excludes the use of prerecorded or presequenced material, even if that material is the performer's own work. I don't mean to suggest that there's anything wrong with using such material, or with persons who do so calling themselves one-person bands. It's just beyond the scope of this Web site.

On the other hand, realtime sequencing devices do properly belong here, and at the moment, they aren't. I would welcome any input regarding such devices as the sequencer in the Roland GR-1, the arpeggiator in the Roland GR-30, and the Anatek Pocket Record and Pocket Sequencer.


My MIDI guitar doesn't track properly-- what's wrong?

My page on Using MIDI Guitar grew out of answering this question repeatedly for myself and many others; it contains most of my possible answers. If none of my answers fits your problem, ask on the MIDI Guitar Mailing List.


I want a RoCaMaha XTC-69-- where can I find one?
I want to sell my dead mint RoCaMaha XTC-69-- what's it worth?

I'm not a dealer, only a user and junkie, so I can't give specific answers to these questions.

My experience suggests that the way to get the best price (selling or buying) is to not be in a hurry-- and to find a buyer (or seller) who is in a hurry. (I've been a much more successful buyer than seller!)

Auction sites such as ebay, the Harmony Central Classifieds and rec.music.makers.marketplace on Usenet are good places to see what's being asked and offered for a given piece of gear. Usenet also offers regional newsgroups, some of them dedicated to buying and selling stuff. An explanation of Usenet is beyond the scope of this site; Tim McLellan's Free Advice on Usenet News covers the basics well.

I've never personally bought or sold through any of these avenues, so I'm not in a position to recommend (or warn against) doing so. Obviously, caveat emptor.


I just got a great deal on a used RoCaMaha XTC-69 -- where can I get a manual?

The Synth Zone Owner & Service Manuals has links to many sources of owner and service manuals.

Mark Glinsky's Manual Manor lists a huge inventory of manuals.

Rogue Music claims, "We have a vast library of manuals. If you need a copy of one, email us as to what you need and we will give you a price, usually from $10 to $25 depending upon size." Rogue's email address is web@roguemusic.com. I have never dealt with this company, so I'm merely passing along what the Web site claims.


My beloved RoCaMaha XTC-69 is broken-- where can I get it fixed?

I don't know. But:

I receive this question most frequently about the Casio PG-series MIDI guitars; see this page for help.


"Could you send me some MIDI sequences done with MIDI guitar, so I can hear how they compare with my keyboard MIDIs?"

No.

Okay, so this specific Question isn't Frequently Asked, but I have received a lot of questions (including this one) about using MIDI guitar as a controller for sequencing. My answer to all of them is:

MIDI guitar is a fabulous instrument for live performance, because it expands the guitar's already formidable expressive potential with the addition of one or more completely different sounds. For sequencing, though, MIDI guitars tend to be less satisfactory than keyboards, for reasons nicely summed up in Jeff Glatt's page on Using MIDI Guitar for sequencing. (This page is only a small part of Jeff's MIDI Technical Fanatic's Brainwashing Center, an exhaustive resource on nearly any aspect of MIDI.)

If you must use MIDI guitar for sequencing, the procedures in my own page on Using MIDI Guitar are as valid for sequencing as they are for live performance.

I truly don't have any MIDI files exemplifying the MIDI guitar as a sequencer controller. I have used MIDI guitar almost exclusively in live performance and in analog recording (some of which can be downloaded from the Sounds page.

I have made a few attempts at sequencing with MIDI guitar, in an effort to create examples of glitches and tracking problems. I've been too successful-- the MIDI files I created were too riddled with problems to be useful as examples.


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