This site was originally inspired because Monique gave me a brand new “Yamaha DGX-640 Digital Grand Piano” as an early Christmas gift last year. It was pretty extravagant, but something I’ve wanted for years, ever since my Uncle Freil showed me his digital grand back in the late 1990′s. Lightweight, but full-sized keys, pressure sensitive, weighted… and a headphone jack.
Of all the golly-gee features this piano offers, the headphone has got to be my personal favorite. I can play any time, night or day, without disturbing anybody. That’s the main reason I faded away from playing on our studio piano in the living room. It was just too hard to be spontaneous when the noise factor and time of day had to be considered. Most of my playing is more ‘joyful’ than ‘peaceful’, and it’s pretty hard to ignore when the piano seems to be amplified through the entire house.
Learning what the dgx can do has been a slow process. When it was brand new, I played with the voices, rhythms, and effects. Eventually wound up almost exclusively playing the Grand Piano voice, with no extra features. In some ways, buying the 640 has turned out to be overkill. All those extras aren’t being used. In other ways, getting the best I could afford was a great idea. There’s room to grow, with all those features waiting for the day they become interesting.
There are features that turned out much more useful than expected. Being able to record songs on-board the piano is one. Going a step further, being able to import the midi files from the piano into the computer is another. There’s a lot you can do with a midi file. But mainly it was in order to make videos showing how to play my own arrangements.
Yeah, it’s hard to believe people actually like my playing. Kind of a shock when someone wants to learn the arrangements. Even more surprising, people kept requesting sheet music. Took a while, but last weekend I finally collected all those midi files and built a page for them.
Because so many people were kind enough to ask, all the songs I saved to midi files are available as free sheet music to download (just click here). As time permits, I’ll recreate the older songs and post them also. To everybody reading this, and downloading the music, thank you. To the people who requested (and kept requesting) sheet music, you have no idea how much that means to me. You inspire me.