Since starting the band Capital Gains in December 2008, I have found an outlet for channeling some creative energy into music. Like all bands, Capital Gains started off doing covers. We fully expected to continue to be mostly a cover band, but we always wanted to do something original. Over the years leading up to the time I formed the band, I had scribbled, scratched, and plucked a handful of disjointed pieces of original songs. I kept notes on these in a folder, thinking someday I would put them together. Then after about 15 months of being in this band, I decided to start doing some songwriting. I did not, however, go back and use any of my old ideas. I just started from scratch. I encouraged my former bandmate and lead singer, Judith Anne Garretson Folse, to work with me, and I worked on some independently. Although I have no illusions about becoming a famous songwriter, especially at this point in my life, I do feel confident that I can write decent music that people will at least not turn their noses up at. As someone said, most of what passes for pop music today is not very good, so I believe these songs would hold up well by comparison. Of course, there is more to being a successful songwriter and recording artist than just having good songs. All that other stuff is what I don't have and, frankly, don't really much care to go after.
About six months after starting to formally write songs and after having the band record a couple of them, I decided that these songs needed to be written into music notation. I have never had any formal music training, but I did teach myself how to read music at a very basic level many years ago. I researched the various software programs out there for notating music and settled on Sibelius First. This is a somewhat scaled-down version of the full-blown gold star of songwriting software, Sibelius. I highly recommend Sibelius First. It costs only around $100. You can enter notes various ways, including a midi keyboard or guitar or just your regular computer keyboard. It checks everything to make sure you conform to the rules (e.g., four quarter notes when in 4 4 time). It also plays it back, so you can make sure you got it right. Awesome is the most concise thing I can say about it. I truly love it. And I love the way the music looks in notation.
Pull Me Under (June, 2010, co-authored with J. Folse): First page of sheet music. mp3 file. Lyrics
Long Lost Journey (July, 2010, co-authored with J. Folse): First page of sheet music. mp3 file. Lyrics
Capital Gains Blues (October, 2010): First page of sheet music. mp3 file. Lyrics
With You for All of Time (August, 2010 - January, 2011): First page of sheet music. Lyrics (has not been recorded)
Return to Main PageLast updated: August 8, 2011