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If you are a budding/amateur music composer like me or you just need to vent your creative energies into music, Linux has the best tools in the business to get the job done. I've looked around every corner of the web and I couldn't find a MIDI sequencer/composer better than Rosegarden. It does have a bit of a learning curve and you'll need to learn how to use the score editor (or the piano roll) to make sequences but once you master that, it's a bit of a breeze to put together a wonderful little song. I know there are other MIDI sequencers and trackers, but in my opinion, nothing comes close to the stability and configurability of this program.
I've always been fond of Trackers, ever since I used MIDITracker under Windows but I couldn't find one which was stable and feature-rich like it, so I decided to go with this program instead. And once I found my way around the piano roll, composing music is as simple as drag and drop.
Of course, you need to set up MIDI on your Linux system first, but I've already covered that in past articles. You can either go with TiMidity or use qsynth (a GUI front-end to fluidsynth). Of course, you need good sound patches or sound fonts.
You can download sound fonts for use with qsynth/fluidsynth at HammerSound.net or you can get the EAW patches for use with TiMidity. I don't have any particular preference for either, so use whichever one works for you. Make sure you download a GM-compatible set if you intend to share your work with others.
Here's a sample piece I composed in Rosegarden (MIDI format):
Download: new-creme-1.mid (18.9 kB, ~2 min)
Don't ask me why I named it New Creme 1. Note that it is copyright material, so please don't use it for any purpose other than personal enjoyment without informing me.
Posted on Thu, Nov 1, 2007 at 18:15 IST (last updated: Thu, May 7, 2009 @ 21:14 IST)