Tim Ringgold at TED

Over the past few years, there have been many TED talks on music and the brain and music and medicine, however, this is one of very few talks actually presented by a board-certified music therapist.  Thanks, Tim Ringgold!




Thanks, AARP for spreading the word about music therapy!  Already, some of our Virginia music therapists have received calls about contract services because of this article.


Music Therapy Advocacy Song

Click on the title of this post to check out the “Somebody That I Used to Know” parody by the music therapists at The George Center (www.thegeorgecenter.com)!


Ben Folds Promotes Music Therapy

Hey everyone! Check out what Ben Folds wrote on his Facebook page today…

“Why I advocate Music Therapy:

I’m not a Music Therapist but I believe in it strongly enough to bring attention to it.

We all have a relative or a friend who’s had a stroke, who’s autistic, who’s had brain damage, hearing loss, mental illness or gone through a serious emo phase (sorry, I’m really not trying to be funny), and so on. We also all know on an intuitive level that music is pretty powerful. If you spend 5 minutes to view some evidence, the whole thing will click for you. It’s an easy sell because it’s real and solid. From rewiring the neuropaths of a stroke or brain damage victim –http://bit.ly/ABCNewsOnGabbyGiffords – to lowering perceived pain levels, to helping those who lost the ability to speak find their voice again.

It’s safe, cost effective, and in some cases even insured. It incorporates some heavy science and research, and, most importantly, it gets results.

We’re living through an era of intense technological advancements and sometimes it’s easy to forget common sense. As we find we can’t always afford the luxuries of some of our advancements, either in terms of money or even damage to health or environment, we are opening our minds to some more basic approaches that get us back in touch with what works. Consider my father having solar panels on his house – his entire electric bill is a buck fifty a month. Sun powered energy seemed far-fetched while we could afford the ‘traditional’ methods of generating energy. Ten years ago people thought he was nutty (he’s still nutty but that’s another story).

Recently, we’re finding a need to return to some common sense. This is how I feel about music therapy. Check out these links on the American Music Therapy Association’s website if you have a family member or friend who might need it, or if you’re interested yourself in going into the field.


Lastly, I want to say that for all the ‘kids these days’ complaints that adults seem to moan about, I think this next generation of teenage/twenty something people are damn cool. It’s a new world, and in spite of the bleak outlook that’s sold through the media, I see a pretty bright future in terms of outlook and approach. They’re smarter than we were. Music Therapy isn’t new but it’s burgeoning with this next generation. They get it. And even after we handed them a sh*t sandwich, they’re still willing to work for very little and they’ll end up curing us when we get old. That’s wicked awesome (well, not the sandwich part).

Music, as a pure commodity in today’s marketplace, by my rough calculations is worth approximately… well… nothing – not a damn thing. People don’t buy it literally – it’s become free. As a means to further a political or broad social cause it’s likely worth less. It’s not the sixties anymore. So what IS it worth? I believe there is some sort of cultural law of conservation out there – music IS worth exactly what it always was and there’s just as much of it but it’s value is now found in other places. It’s not here to make rock stars millionaires anymore (which sucks for me and the me of the next generation) but it may well heal them. And many of the would-have-been-millionaire rock stars are going into Music Therapy as a vocation . Their less self-centered approach will resonate socially along with the music. Sure, we got problems, but things won’t be turning out the way pundits think. We/they don’t know, but I have a good feeling and I’m pointing to Music Therapy as part of the future.

P.S. Let’s get more dudes into this field! It’s 90% chicks right now!
P.S.S. I’m gonna make #FollowMTWeek on Twitter a two-week event if you don’t mind….”

Robert Gupta – Music & the Brain

In this TED talk, recommended to me by a friend, Robert Gupta discusses melodic intonation therapy, talks briefly about neuroplasticity, and explores the connection between music and the brain!


The Power of Music

Awesome video a colleague sent that really displays the power of music! I also love that Oliver Sacks contributed to this story. He’s a wonderful advocate of music therapy and shows us (in his books and interviews) the science behind how music affects the brain.

Music Therapy & Medicine

Hi everyone!  Sorry for the lengthy delay.  I’ll be updating weekly through the fall…

I found this article on my Google news feed the other day.  It’s always so neat to hear that a hospital/organization understands the importance and positive impact of music therapy and is willing to raise money to support a program.


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