Harmonious Beginnings MTS

Reasons to Make a Playlist

Posted on June 11th, 2014 in Uncategorized by |

Today, as I was driving, I was listening to WUWM, Lake Effect and I heard an interview with a gerontologist (someone who studies aging) who worked with dementia patients. She had been researching the effects of music on her nursing home residents and found many benefits to listening to favorite songs – or preferred music as we MTs call it.

None of the research was surprising or new to me, but I was glad to hear that research was being done on the effects of music by another profession besides Music Therapists. It kind of sent me down another track of a more personal application. She talked about how she was in the process of creating her own playlist to be used by friends and family when and if she ever was elderly, ill or incapacitated in a way that made it difficult to communicate her wished to her care takers. Eureka! Of course! Why haven’t I thought of that? I have often thought about the music that calms me…motivates me…brings back memories…but I have never made a list of those songs! What a great tool to have. Only you truly know what goes through your mind when you hear certain songs and making a list of those songs and what they do for you, is almost like creating a treatment plan for  future care givers like Music Therapists to use.

I’m going to start my list and encourage family members to do the same. Mom and Dad, I don’t know what’s in store for us as the next stage of our lives unfold, but this tool would be invaluable to me! I’m sure I could make some pretty good guesses as to what my family likes to listen to, but it’s the specific songs that are tied to memories and emotions that are key. Putting this list together now, means that you can consider all the options while your mind is healthy and functioning. Some of the songs I played in the UW-Eau Claire Symphony Orchestra would never occur to my brother to put on my favorite song list, but the Shostakovitch Symphonies or the Barber Adagio for Strings that we played as I cried tears on stage is a memory that my family might not consider. And I think those are precious….so I’m writing them down and starting today. You should too.

 

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