tools in the toolbox

Musicians have a lot of tools – our voices, our instruments, our gadgets (tuners, wrenches, cables, spare vacuum tubes, sticks and brushes, Leslie oil, etc.).

Composers, arrangers and transcribers also have another set: ruled paper, pens, and software. There is a large number of music authoring programs out there, and I have recently learned of a couple of good resources to get a feel for what’s available, pros and cons, costs, etc.

First is a Facebook group called “Music Notation Software for Church Musicians“. You have to have a Facebook account to see the page.

There’s also a web site at Canada’s Acadia University that catalogues (all of?) the vast range of notation programs, called “Music Notation Software“. It’s not all Finale vs. Sibelius, it turns out. There are freeware programs, commercial programs, programs for different operating systems, specialized programs (like setting Gregorian chant or lute tablature). Even if you’re a rabid fan of your current software, it’s interesting just to browse the listing and see what is available.

About liberalreligiongetsloud

Contemporary Music and Worship Director (retired), First Unitarian, Albuquerque NM
This entry was posted in contemporary worship. Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to tools in the toolbox

  1. I see that Avid has disbanded the development team for Sibelius, which seems to imply that it is a zombie product now. The most recent version (7) seems to have been a big disappointment to Sibelius users, anyway, so maybe it was already dead.

    Anyway, if you’re just starting with music notation software, or looking for a substitute for your zombie program, it’s worth noting that Finale is not the only possibility. (Though I use and generally like Finale PrintMusic very much.)

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