#music #fun #songwriting #musicproduction

Hello lovely people,

I have been playing the guitar a lot and getting back to doing my hobbies again, when I was ill I stopped doing them. See my previous blog post for more details on what happened to me.

Anyway, so I’ve been working on this song and I actually got out ProTools. I literally have not seriously worked on ProTools since University. The picture below is circa 2008! That’s before Instagram even existed!


Normally my music production software of choice is Finale, that’s what I do my scoring on. Listen to examples of my scoring here.

Here’s what I’ve been on ProTools working on, Follow This Link or play it in the embedded player below:


I’m going to finish a draft of the song, then start again and do it properly, consider the above the equivalent of a musical sticky note. Feedback would be appreciated! Head to the Contact Me page or leave a comment at the bottom of this post!


The difference between ProTools and Finale


What’s the difference between the two? ProTools is like a really expensive Garage Band lol and the ProTools interface looks like this:


In Finale and other notation software like Sibelius the interface looks like this:


BTW that song turned into this:


Finale and any other notation software like Sibelius on the other hand, work almost exclusively with MIDI and you make the sounds by putting the notes, articulations, performance directions etc into a virtual score. To put this into context for people who don’t know how notation software works I have devised the following illustration:

Virtual score = MIDI keyboard/some kind of MIDI interface

Notes = Master Bypass notes on and off/keys on a MIDI keyboard/knobs on a MIDI interface of some kind

Articulations etc. = Various MIDI Parameters and their Controllers


VST Instruments

You can also plug in VST instruments or “virtual midi instruments”, the same way you can in ProTools or manually in a studio/home studio by physically plugging in a midi controller of some kind directly into the audio interface. I did that a lot when I worked in a music studio back in the day.


When it comes to VST instruments I am rather partial to some good old fashioned German engineering in the form of Kontakt, I also have a beautiful Steinway piano VST by Steinway which is just gorgeous! Have a listen below 🙂



ProTools is infinitely more accessible and easy to use than Finale or any other notation software. Why? because notation software requires previous knowledge of notation and music theory in order to be used effectively. Personally, I prefer Finale/music notation software because orchestration and orchestral music is my area of expertise.


Extra unrelated info

I also enjoy doing live sound, there aren’t many pictures of me doing it, but I do do it lol. Here’s a video of me doing the sound at a gig in the Students Union when I was at university. FYI, before you start moaning, yes I can see the faders were a bit high but I was young, it was near the end of the gig and I couldn’t really hear that well any more, forgive me… lol. Although my ears did recover!


Lots of love

Catherine x

P.S. I’ve finished writing the lyrics to the song, Jesus helped me!

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