The MMT-8 MIDI Implementation Chart says that it recognizes Program Change, but mine doesn’t do anything when I send it one. Does anyone know if this is just the nature of the beast or if it’s potentially broken?
Im not sure, but it most likely means that it will record program changes. not change sequences or patterns.
Correct, the MMT-8 does not “respond” to Program Change messages itself. But, Program Change (among other message types) is listed in the MIDI implementation since the MMT-8 does “recognize” such messages in order to record them.
A sequencer is a special kind of MIDI device. In general, it “consumes” all types of MIDI messages, but doesn’t respond (other that to record them) except in a few special cases. For example, the MMT-8 responds to Song Position Pointer, Start, and Timing Clock messages, which can be used to control playback from another device (e.g., another sequencer, drum machine). (These messages are also never recorded, btw.) The MMT-8 also responds to its own SysEx messages for writing previously saved parts and songs back into memory. (Again, the MMT-8 would never record its own SysEx, though it does record other SysEx received, subject to memory limits.)
Anyway, back in the day, I would record a “header” part with each song that would send a bunch of recorded Program Change messages designed to initialize my synths before the music started. Or, I would sometimes get creative (given limited equipment at the time) and send Program Changes to switch patches mid-song in order to use the same synth for more than one “voice” in the song.