Advanced topics

Controlling an arranger keyboard

When you select menu option "Settings>Auto-accompaniment-method>Use-the-styles-in-a-connected-arranger-keyboard" and press the play button, then Busker will start sending MIDI start, stop and clock messages and midi chord and melody notes to synchronise a connected arranger keyboard. This is different from using the arranger keyboard as a synthesizer module. The style that you will hear is the style that is currently active in your arranger keyboard. In other words the arranger keyboard is played from remote. This will work on almost any arranger keyboard that has a MIDI connection. However you must be able to switch the arranger keyboard to the correct mode that is:

  1. It should start the accompaniment after a start message is received (and stop after the stop message).

  2. It should not follow the tempo that is set up in the arranger keyboard but follow the MIDI clock messages that it receives.

  3. It should change chords according to the chord notes that it receives at the chord channel. The chord and melody channel can be specified in the window that pops up when you select Settings/Device-type/External-arranger.

  4. It should play the melody (and add autoharmony if switched on) from the notes it receives at the melody channel.

How to do this is different on each arranger keyboard and will require some study of the small printed parts of your keyboard manual. There you may also find the midi messages that will select a particular style(part). You can insert these messages in the song by dragging the MIDI tile to a measure in the staf. Specify the MIDI message in the window that pops up.

If you want Busker to behave as slave (receiving clock messages) instead of master (sending clock messages) then change this in menu settings/synchronisation. When Busker is acting as slave then it will follow the tempo determined by your arranger keyboard and you can change the tempo on your keyboard.

Instrument definition file

If you have a synthesizer with much more then the 128 GM voices then you may find it pleasant to select the instruments by fully specified name in stead of bank msb and lsb numbers. The instrument names are defined in a file in the Busker program folder named busker.ins. This file follows the Cakewalk standard for instrument definitions. If you have a Cakewalk instrument definition file for your synthesizer then you can replace the busker.ins file with a copy of your instruments file. When you start Busker again the names listed in the melodyvoices (when you press the ins button) will correspond with your synthesizer. If you want to create an ins file your self then here are some guidelines.


For detailed editing and recording of extra instruments there is a complete sequencer included in Busker. Select menu option Window/Sequencer to get there. After saving a MIDI file you can read it in the sequencer and work on it further. The sequencer is similar to that build in One Man Band and you can read the One Man Band tutorial about this.

ABC files

Select menu option Files/Import-ABC and select a file.

You will see the title and contents of the first song in the file. ABC notation is text based music notation. You can scroll thru the songs in the file with the listfield on top of the window. When you press the select button it will be converted to a Busker song. In ABC often repeat signs are in the middle of a measure instead of on a barline. This is indicated with dotted repeat signs in the staff. You can not place such a dotted repeat yourself, they are only introduced by converting from a ABC file.


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