Category Archives: Aging

Love’s old sweet song

I felt a tap on my shoulder and turned to find Owen. He steadied himself with his walker and grinned. “Bet you didn’t expect to see me here, did ya?” Until a few weeks ago, Owen lived in an independent … Continue reading

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Daddy sang bass, Mama sang tenor

When I play “Tip Toe Through the Tulips,” 92-year-old Marcie doesn’t think of Tiny Tim’s 1968 falsetto rendition. Instead, she hears her mother’s voice. Marcie had a twin sister and another close childhood friend. When the three girls were little, … Continue reading

Posted in Aging, Audiences, Music and emotion, Volunteering | 5 Comments

Memories light the corners of my mind

Remember Henry? In December 2013, I wrote a post about playing the piano for people with dementia, and how music awakens them. In that post, I mentioned the documentary Alive Inside and included the clip featuring Henry. Here’s how he … Continue reading

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The times they are a-changin’

I was eating a bowl of cereal in my kitchen last October when I heard on the radio that Bob Dylan had won the Nobel Prize in Literature. I abandoned my spelt flakes, went to my sheet music closet, found … Continue reading

Posted in Aging, Audiences, Music and emotion, Music programming, Song requests, Volunteering | Tagged | 2 Comments

Don’t be that way

One of the many books my daughter and I enjoyed reading together when she was little was The Bike Lesson, a Berenstain Bears adventure. It still makes me laugh. Small Bear gets a new bike; Papa Bear teaches him how … Continue reading

Posted in Aging, Overheard, Volunteering | 7 Comments

It’s fun to wander through the alphabet with you

One of the blogs I follow is Frances Wilson’s The Cross-Eyed Pianist. She’s a London-based pianist, piano teacher, writer, music reviewer, and blogger. Back in November, I contributed to the “Pianist’s Alphabet” series on her blog. My guest post is … Continue reading

Posted in Aging, Music and emotion, Volunteering | Tagged | 1 Comment

A dear old land of leprechauns and wondrous wishing wells

It was bound to happen sooner or later. I recently met a new resident of a senior facility who was, until a few months ago, a volunteer pianist like me. We chatted a bit and soon discovered we’ve played at … Continue reading

Posted in Aging, Audiences, Music and emotion, Music history, Volunteering | Tagged , | 4 Comments

Bingo was his name-o

“Mind if I make the announcements now?” At some point about halfway through my hour of lunchtime background music, this “life enrichment” director always asks me to stop for a few minutes. Microphone in hand, she reads her list of … Continue reading

Posted in Aging, Volunteering | Tagged | 3 Comments

Song without words

“Who put the kick in the chicken?” Patty repeatedly asked her tablemates, over a lunch of tuna salad. They tried hard to figure out what she meant, with no luck. Patty’s frustration mounted. “WHO PUT THE KICK IN THE CHICKEN?” … Continue reading

Posted in Aging, Audiences, Overheard, Volunteering | Tagged | 2 Comments

From the archives

For most people, the upcoming Labor Day weekend marks the end of summer. For me, fall begins today, the day I turn my calendar to September. September makes me think of white blouses. When I was growing up, I could … Continue reading

Posted in Aging, Music and emotion, Music history, Volunteering | 2 Comments