Meet our Music Therapist: Catherine!


I asked our music therapists a few questions about themselves, and they were more than willing to share with you!

Read below to find out how Catherine became a music therapist and what her career path might had entailed if she didn't pursue music therapy!

Meet Catherine Backus


What did you want to be when you grew up?

When I was in fourth grade, I wanted to be a fighter pilot, more specifically the first woman member of the Blue Angels. Then I discovered I was both visually impaired and a pacifist, so I set my sights on rock stardom. ;)


How did you learn of music therapy?

I stumbled upon it by accident while applying for and visiting colleges during my last 2 years of high school. I had dreams of being a songwriter but knew I wanted to get a degree, and it seemed like a better fit than education or trumpet performance. 


Why did you want to become a music therapist?

For me, my first clinical experience solidified my desire to become an MT. Music had been such an important part of my own journey with mental health, and I wanted to be able to pay that forward and share it with others. Writing a song with a client is a lot more fulfilling than singing in bars, at the end of the day.  

What is your most favorite thing about being a music therapist?

So many things! I love that I have a job where I get to make music every day. Music therapy keeps you on your toes- I’m always learning new songs from my clients, and I think there are so many special moments that come out of improvisation and making music together. Being an MT reminds me that magic still exists in the world.


If you weren’t a music therapist what would have been your career path?

There was a period of time when I seriously contemplated changing my major to forestry and becoming a park ranger. That or producing and engineering records. The music industry needs more women behind the faders!

You’re a new addition to the crayon box. What color would you be and why?

Mahogany Sunburst. It’s my favorite guitar finish, and underrepresented in the Crayola Oeuvre.


What’s your favorite ’90s jam?

I could literally write a book on this subject. In college, my sister and I did 2 years of “Nineties November,” wherein we covered a different 90’s jam for every day of the month, so I have an extensive knowledge of the subject. There are so many records from the 90s that I fell in love with after the fact (Lucinda Williams, Iris DeMent, Tracy Chapman), but if I have to pick one that I loved at the time and can still belt out at a moment’s notice, it’s gotta be the Spice Girls’ “Wannabe.” Zig-A-Zig-Ha!

To learn more about Catherine's clinical background and "meet" our other therapists visit our bio page!


Also, be sure to check out the "related posts" where you'll find blog posts written by Catherine herself!

#musictherapy #aboutus #profession #about #Catherine

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Roanoke, Virginia 

Call: 540.384.1677

Fax: 540.808.1582

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