As the guys from Roland says, one standard simply started it all. One technology allowed different musical devices and computers to all speak the same language and make beautiful music together. Thirty years ago, MIDI was born. The rest is history.
It all began in early 1980’s when two electronic musical instruments pioneers, Dave Smith and Ikutaro Kakehashi shared a vision of synthesizers with different manufactures communicating with each other and connecting to computers with one simple interface. Along with other manufactures, in Japan and in the United States they collaborated to develop the Musical Instrument Digital Interface specification or MIDI for short. The first two products equipped with MIDI technology was Prophet 600 and Jupiter-6 from Roland which was presented at the Winter Namm Show from January 1983.
More MIDI equipped keyboards appeared soon after but perhaps the biggest impact of this technology was the introduction of MIDI interfaces and software for personal computers making possible the recording, editing and playback of synthesizers performances in a process known as MIDI Sequencing. What started as the simple capture of a single keyboard performance quickly grew to the ability to manipulate and orchestrate dozens then hundreds of tracks and instruments to perform every kind of music imaginable.
MIDI transform the music industry thirty years ago and continues to be an essential technology in music production area, in professional recording studios, in home recording studios, even in living rooms, for film music, for education, for games or karaoke.
Today, almost every type of musical instrument and music related device is available with midi including guitars, wind instruments, bow instruments, accordions, drum sets and even ipads and iphones. The power and flexibility of MIDI technology has brought it into many others areas such as live sound and stage lightning, robotics, etc. In the music products industry alone, MIDI devices makes $4 Billion per year in equipment sales through hundreds of companies that are making products which use MIDI technology. These numbers will grow even larger in the future.
More details you can find on www.midi.org/midi30