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OT: Different Sequencer question

Question for the more sequencer-savvy - 

I am working with a laptop running Cakewalk (version 4.5, just to be 
specific, but I can upgrade to version 8 or 9 if neccessary) and trying to 
run sequences into an EMU Orbit. 

The question is, I've heard about messages that are sent at the beginning 
a track that would tell the Orbit what patches to use on each channel 
bass on channel 1, drums on channel 2, etc.). What are these messages 
and how does one implement them? 

Thanks much - the more in depth I get with midi, the more I regret not 
starting to investigate it when I had access to lots of midi-heads to 
stupid questions like this!!!

- Bill