MIDI: The Essential Standard Turns 30

30 years of midi
In the early 1980s, Roland founder Ikutaro Kakehashi and Sequential Circuits founder Dave Smith had a dream—a simple interface that would allow all electronic musical instruments to communicate with each other and with computers. To make this dream a reality, these pioneers brought together an unprecedented coalition of manufacturers from the United States and Japan, and soon the Musical Instrument Digital Interface, or “MIDI,” was born. 30 years ago, the 1983 Winter NAMM Show hosted its landmark public unveiling, where Roland and Sequential Circuits demonstrated the first two MIDI-equipped synthesizers “talking” to each other via this new universal communication standard. More