There's a lot of music in this world;
and more is being written every day! Music is
a God-given gift that will never be replaced with
anything else. How could it be? We have
created so many different musical forms, instruments
and genres over the past thousands and thousands of
years and it seems that our capacity for new musical
creations is endless. And yet, throughout
history, famous composers of every era have
declared: "Well, all the good melodies have
been taken now! Nothing new can be thought
up!!" Can you imagine? Add rhythm,
harmony, and timbre to the mix, and the
possibilities are truly infinitesimal!
Which brings me to my point.
Almost every human out there has some piece or genre
of music that they respond to powerfully. In
my long life, I have only encountered a few people
who claimed that there was no music that they liked.
It baffles me, but I accept that and move on.
Discovering for yourself which music
affects you in a positive, regenerative, restorative
and healing way, is a worthwhile journey that I
highly recommend! I work with patients every
day who are suffering from chronic pain and fatigue,
anxiety and depression, and addictions to anything
you can imagine. In each case, we are able to
find music from their lives, that helps to bring
them comfort and hope and remind them of good times
that had been truly forgotten.
How to begin? Well, I like to
do it chronologically, going decade by decade
through a person's life, remembering where they
lived, what their surroundings looked like, who
their caregivers were, and what they focus of that
decade was for them. Then, we slowly begin
remembering the music, whether live, recorded or on
the TV/Radio, that they loved and remember vividly.
We can often listen to it immediately, with the
availability of YouTube, Spotify, and so many other
You can see their body language begin
to transform almost instantly as they recall and
then hear those familiar songs and pieces.
Of course, those of us that are professional
musicians, really have a lot to remember! But
just regular listeners do too! I'd love to
hear from YOU about what music came back to you and
they feelings it brought with it. Have a
wonderful summer and enjoy all the music around you.
Healing Music Blog
Why You Need to Use Music during
Joint Replacement Surgery
With the aging of the Babyboomers, comes the
need for replacing our worn-out and achy joints.
We Babyboomers have been very hard on our
bodies, with jogging, running and aerobics
skyrocketing to popularity when we were young
and foolish. It was also during many of our teen
years that fast-food became extremely popular
and McDonald’s and Burger King and Kentucky
Fried Chicken on every corner. I remember the
birth of TV Dinners and frozen food of all kinds
that our mothers thought was just great. Little
did we know what we were doing to our bodies.
Now as we hit our late 50′s and early 60′s, many
of us are require hip and knee replacements and
no wonder! We’re carrying around lots of extra
poundage and extra inches around our waists and
hips! Our knees are simply not able to support
this weight on our trunks, and our hips can’t
support the massive torsos. Not only that, but
with the advent of TV’s in every room of the
house, we really don’t need to move much at all
when we return home from sitting behind and desk
Not to sound like the voice of gloom and doom,
but this sedentary lifestyle has definitely
created a generation of folks that are going to
need joint replacement surgery
No one wants to have surgery. But some people are so terrified of
“going under the knife” and “having general anesthesia,” that they
put off needed surgery because of this fear. The good news is, today
there are so many resources with accurate and easy-to-understand
information that people can get much-needed and reassuring
information about what goes on during the procedure they need.
One of the many things that people can do is to use music before,
during and after the procedure. Using your favorite soothing,
comforting music before surgery can calm you down and begin to relax
your body so that it takes less anesthesia to put you to sleep. If
you’re particularly sensitive to anesthesia this is really an
excellent idea! If you’re able to put different music on your iPod,
the music for surgery should ideally be purely instrumental and have
a steady tempo, close to the tempo of the healthy resting heartbeat.
Choose your favorite genre and practice listening to it and relaxing
before your surgery.
What happens to your brain
when you listen to music
We all wonder this and know that we
definitely feel better when we listen to music, but they
question “WHY??” has always popped into my head since I was
a little child. I can remember sitting in concerts during
the summer and being so overwhelmed and flooded with
positive emotion that I wished the music would never end! It
was that powerful for me. To this day, I do not know what
this music was, but it was either an orchestra or a concert
band playing English folksong suites, I suspect.
It’s also interesting to note that humans seems to respond
most powerfully to the music that reflects our cultural
heritage, even hundreds of years back! So music is actually
in our DNA, or at least musical preferences.
This is a story that I heard on CNN, and wanted to share
with my readers from the famous and highly esteemed, Daniel
Levitan, MD. Enjoy!
For nearly two decades, I've been helping people use the music that
they already love to heal their lives and increase their wellness
am one of the world's only clinical musicologists and hold
a Masters degree in piano performance, a Ph.D. in
musicology and a Master of Social Work in clinical social work. I
am also a licensed clinical social worker. I work with people and
diagnoses of all kinds, enabling them to find healing, acceptance and
performing, researching, and teaching and have put them all together
in a career called "Music Medicine."
Dr. Alice H. Cash is often asked to share her
Grand Rounds Presentation with hospitals' doctors and staff. Learn
what is currently happening around the world and the results they are
"It was the
easiest of all hand surgeries! I was listening to music, then a slight
lull of nothing and then back to the music. Wonderfully comfortable. The
best surgical experience yet. I am honored to know, worked with and
utilized Dr. Cash's magnificent creation. I do hope the medical field
understands the import of her invention!"