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A Landmark Week for Music Therapy Awareness

June 21, 2017
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The week of the 2017 Memorial Day holiday will go down as a landmark week for the music therapy profession in the United States. Let’s start at the end…
Through a partnership between the Kennedy Center and the National Institutes for Health (NIH), music therapy was on full display during the June 2-3 “Sound Health: Music […]

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Pomp and Circumstance-inspired Musings

May 13, 2017
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I am fresh off the annual academic tradition of the commencement ceremony. With its academic regalia, inspirational speeches, decorated caps, air horns, and (of course) music, this event marks a concrete moment in life when one transitions into a new role—student to professional, student back to (law/medical/grad) student, student scholar to professional academic.
I enjoy the […]

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[PsychToday] Inaugurations, Women’s Marches, and the Social Role of Music

January 19, 2017
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I’ve found myself wondering what type of music we’ll hear this weekend. In case you’ve missed it, there are some pretty big events happening over the next couple of days—a certain Inauguration ceremony Friday followed the next day by a Women’s March. The purpose of each is vastly different, as are the people associated with […]

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[PsychToday] The Soothing Balm of Music

November 20, 2016
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I finally cried over Hillary Clinton’s loss last Sunday morning when watching Kate McKinnon (as Clinton) hauntingly sing Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” on SNL. Though there were likely multiple factors involved in this emotional release—fatigue from travel, disbelief over recent political events, a physical and emotional letdown following a week-long professional conference—what ultimately put me over […]

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[PsychToday] #BecauseofArtsEd: Arts Education and Me

September 14, 2016
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It will come as no surprise to those who follow my blog posts that I am a big proponent of arts education. I’ve blogged about the reported benefits of including arts in education, have provided ideas of engaging young kids in music, and have highlighted the intrinsic benefits of being trained as a musician.

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[PsychToday] Harmonicas, Social Connections, and Politics

August 4, 2016
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America has spent the last couple weeks learning about the Democratic Vice Presidential Candidate pic, Senator Tim Kaine. We’ve heard his life story—the mission trip to Honduras, his begin-local-and-work-your-way-up political climb—and we’ve discovered a bit about the man—his younger self “hotness,” his fluent Spanish, and his harmonica chops…

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[PsychToday] Patriotic Music and Cultural Identity

June 30, 2016
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Stars and Stripes Forever
The Star Spangled Banner
God Bless the USA
America the Beautiful
Born in the USA

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[PT Post] Are Musical Genres Outdated?

May 27, 2016
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As a musician, one of the hardest questions for me to answer is “what kind of music do you like?” My current rote answer is “Well, it depends on my mood. Sometimes I like…” and then I continue on by listing several examples of different musical genres and the mood I associate them with…

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[PsychToday] Music for Productive Creativity

May 6, 2016
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Arguably, one of music’s most salient characteristics is the impact it has on our emotions. What if this impact can be used in an intentional way to boost creative flow?
I had an interesting conversation last week with an airplane seat mate…read more.

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