A song between songs

Hi all,

I was hoping to have a new song ready to post by now, but life isn’t cooperating, and so it may be several months until I have one finished. So, in the spirit of contributing to the forum, here’s a song I wrote in 2020 when I was first starting out writing with virtual instruments. I learned a lot working on this piece.

The vision- I was inspired by two things- I saw a video of a John Tesh concert that was filmed on Catalina island. I liked the energy of the first song, and I thought “what would I write if I was looking for a concert opener?” And, my wife and I went to Catalina on our first anniversary, and I pictured a festival/parade moving down the main street there in Avalon, and the music sort of captures in my mind that festival, starting small, and then gaining momentum, until in the end it’s the whole island celebrating. And so this is what I wrote, and named the song Catalina.

The song is in D. Pretty much one set of chords throughout- Dmaj, Cmaj, Gmaj, Amaj. (What can I say, I like happy chords! :^)
The groove starts as a sort of simple hybrid latin-caribbean, and then midway through goes to a caribbean Soka groove on the drums.

The song features solos by shakuhachi (japanese flute), Trombone, and Bari Sax.

Piano- Native Instruments (NI) Giant
Bass- Kontakt factory bass
Percussion- NI Cuba
Shakuhachi- Kontakt Factory
Trumpets- Kontakt Factory
TBones- Kontakt Factory
Brass- Kontakt Factory Orchestral
Bari Sax- Kontakt Factory
Solo TBone- NI Session Horns Pro

Thanks for listening!


Very lively piece Steve! Excellent recording quality too, very clear and sharp…

Thanks for listening and taking the time to comment, Jerry!

Cool! The first thing that caught my ear was the bass line. Nice solution; nicely unexpected. The shakuhachi pleasantly reminds of a Dave Grusin piece called “History Lesson” on the Happy Anniversary, Charlie Brown album.

Thanks for listening, Clinton!
I confess, I used the shakuhachi because it was the closest thing I had to a solo flute sound. I ended up liking the character it brought to the solos.


Fun and lively piece Steve. You definitely have a way with these. They just always give me the feeling of being on the beach on some tropical island just chillaxing. Always lively and upbeat, but conversely relaxing.


Thanks so much for listening and your nice comments! I was definitely going for something fun, upbeat, and tropical, so I’m glad you heard it that way!