Using MIDI live

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Posted by Gil Bento on November 08, 2006 at 20:17:20:

If I were in a live-playing situation, with a drummer, bassist, etc., and I were playing guitar, let's say, and I wanted to trigger sequences or sounds from a synth or sequencer somehow, while on stage, without having to stop playing guitar, can you think of any way to do that, aside from just playing a MIDI guitar? From what I have heard, unless you have really good technique, MIDI guitars are very erratic and obstructive to use live, where playing one wrong note will totally throw off the sequence you want to play.

When I saw Jon Anderson of YES play live last year in a solo tour, he had a specially adapted MIDI guitar hooked up to some floor pedals, with which he was able to trigger not only drums, but also all sorts of prerecorded sequences to accompany himself on stage (he was the only musician playing the whole time). However, he was mostly struming chords on the guitar, so it must have been a whole lot easier, I imagine, than if I were to try to play a lead guitar solo and have some synth sounds play along with me...

One thing I noticed is that on the LINE 6 POD amp modeler that I have there are MIDI IN/OUT connections. If I were to connect my regular electric guitar to the LINE 6, could I get some sort of chain going between the POD and some other apparatus, that would enable me to trigger sequences just from playing my guitar?

I was just wondering if this had been tried before and perhaps someone had some idea of how to do it. Basically my objective is to find some way to have some keyboard sounds and sequences played live, without actually having a separate keyboard player.

Perhaps, even if I can't trigger these sequences through the guitar, I could just somehow hook up some different pedals to a sequencer, which I could set-up before each song, and have each pedal trigger a different sequence directly from a sequencer, without having to push any buttons on the sequencer? Any insights would be appreciated!


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