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Seven years ago, a fellow named "MIDI_MAN" compiled 130,000 unique MIDI files by browsing a ton of sites, placing them into directories, and generally assembling years of MIDI music.

Now that collection (1gb compressed, 3.5gb uncompressed, 130,000 files for real!) is at the Internet Archive at this URL:

archive.org/details/midiman_me

@textfiles before mp3 came along, midi was the format of choice. Back in the day I had some myself.

@textfiles also, torrents are so nostalgic for me... that was fun, dl'd already :D :D Now just to spend the rest of my life hunting through these files in FL Studio

@textfiles

And… there goes my weekend!

This is brilliant. Thank you!

@textfiles Very nice! Also, TIL that Brave has a built-in WebTorrent client.

@sehugg @textfiles Didn't know that... will have to have a play with brave.

It is currently seeding away on my seedbox, so hopefully it will come down fast for everyone.

@sehugg @textfiles lol learned the same thing this week. I'll pry stick with qbittorent but was cool

@textfiles Nice, I remember embedding midi files on my homepage... back when FM synthesis was the standard midi synth type and wave table was the reserve of high end pro-grade equipment...

Thanks

@textfiles And what would it sound like if you played them all at once?

@textfiles Time to dust off the trusty Cinco MIDI Organizer

@textfiles my first introduction to the joy of midi was a bootleg midi version of "eye in the sky" that I could use on my Atari ST and was so excited that I could change the instruments played via my Yamaha SY55. I didn't hear a recording of it until many years later (didn't know what it was called!) and it was magic to hear the original.

@textfiles nice! I think I got this collection back in 2015 when I first found out about it on reddit. Nice that its on archive.org though!

@textfiles Install fluidsynth.org/ to play the MIDI files. Under GNU/Linux (Debian) use: apt install fluidsynth. This is a command line tool.

@textfiles This is like finding a perfect sapphire in your pocket.

@textfiles seeding now for .. well as long as I care to :)

@textfiles Thankyou. This is going to be fun in my DAW. I'm a lousey keyboardist and play alot of bad tunes using MIDI so am looking forward to experiencing alot of this. MIDI is a language that every computer should learn 🎹🎼🎶 :)

@textfiles This warms my heart... Way back I had a computer a local library threw out with Windows 95, 16MB RAM, and a whopping 500MB HDD and I wanted to collect music... So MIDI was about all I could do given the space constraints and the fact that I had really bad 28kbps dialup. I still managed to collect nearly 100MB of MIDI files before that drive died.

Wish I had a good MIDI card then, and maybe it'll be okay now under Linux with a good software MIDI emulator.

Thanks for surfacing this!

@textfiles I used to spend hours looking for midi music to include in games that I wrote for myself and friends to play. This collection would've been awesome to have back then.

@textfiles This is so awesome, THANK YOU for posting it! 🎵 🎶 🎹 🎧

@textfiles

Holy crap, 1 GB (compressed) MIDI is a LIFETIME of listening!!!

@textfiles

MIDI, General MIDI and MIDI FILES are three different concepts that most people usually confuse for each other.

This is a collection of MIDI files, probably using the General MIDI instrument set definition, but MIDI itself is not involved when someone plays one of these files on their computer.

A bit confusing, I know...

@textfiles

If you want to get totally retro, I've got a #SuperCollider library that can convert MIDI files into physical fisher price music box disks (via #OpenScad a d a 3d printer). Those were those 1970s plastic disks that played things like Camptown Races.

Find your favourite, cut it to length and give it to a child with retro toy technology: github.com/celesteh/FisherPric

@textfiles

Cool. Will seed for a bit I did a similar collection for myself 15 years ago.

@textfiles Gosh, I will have to parse all of them! Thanks for all the great work at the Archive.

@textfiles
@rubereaglenest

I would imagine the copyright status on each of those midi files is going to vary quite a bit, no? Or does converting a copyrighted piece of music into midi form somehow duck copyright provisions?

If I make a YouTube video with Brittany Spears' playing in the background, it'll get copyright struck, but if I play a midi version of it, I feel like it would still get struck anyway, no?

Regardless, very cool collection!

@pinkunz @textfiles MIDI file is like a sheet music for computer. Copyright status of these things is in fact somewhat complicated and different by each country. The good thing is that labels usually don't care as MIDI file is mostly relic from the past for non-music-making people.

@textfiles I can hardly wait to put this on 2,560 floppies and play them in my Roland MT-120S. #RetroComputing #MIDI

@paulrickards @textfiles I still love that 90s Roland design aesthetic.

It will forever read as "don't you wish you could afford this?" to me. (Also shared by basically anything in Panasonic Grey with lots of little dials on it.)

@textfiles thanks for the link. Gonna check it out.

I used to midi-fy abc files on linux. I wonder if any of those are lying around somewhere.

@cafkafk @textfiles Probably not, but whatever your country equivalent of 17 U.S.C. 107 is means you're in the clear anyway.

@textfiles Thanks for the tip. I wonder what sort of data mining has been done on this.

@textfiles Just now actually getting to this, this is a gold mine! I'm going to do an arrangement of classical music for practice with this

@textfiles absolutely bookmarking and coming back to this later

@textfiles truly impressive. The archive never ceases to amaze and to all those amazing people who collect all these things, thank you!

@textfiles This gives me an idea. A few times I've played around with softsynth instrument sounds by designing them around an existing MIDI. In the cases where I've included these in a Bandcamp release, I obtained permission from the MIDI arranger (but the compositions themselves were public domain). But probably no one would especially mind if I did a completely non-commercial release of these "illuminated" MIDI for cases where authorship is unclear

@textfiles having a good sound font made a big difference when listening. Input devices were way too expensive for me. I also enjoyed mod, s3m, tracker and similar files that embedded the samples in the file. The Hornet Archive was a great source of music.

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