Skip to content

Music with the power to heal

on April 25, 2012

What if you could use something as simple as music to help people dealing with everything from traumatic brain injuries and strokes to neurological disorders and depression? Well, music therapists have been doing just that for more than half a century. And in the Bay Area, the field of music therapy is growing–in hospitals, schools and nursing homes–to help treat a wide range of medical maladies.

The Jared Kurtin Music Therapy Program at Oakland Children’s Hospital is the largest of its kind in Northern California. With two musical therapists working five days a week and a well-established internship operation, the program caters to an average of fifty patients every month. Therapists use music in a lot of different ways. For some patients, music is a way to help them express emotions they otherwise couldn’t. For others it helps to feel connected to their families while they’re stuck in the hospital. And for some patients with neurological disorders or brain injuries, it helps them find speech — many are able to sing before they’re able to talk.

The program is funded in part by money raised through Notes & Words — an annual charity event that features authors and musicians from around the Bay Area. This year’s event happens this Saturday, April 28, and features the band CAKE and Pulitzer prize-winning author Michael Chabon.

1 Comment

  1. […] To hear Megan Molteni’s radio report visit us at Oakland North. […]

Oakland North welcomes comments from our readers, but we ask users to keep all discussion civil and on-topic. Comments post automatically without review from our staff, but we reserve the right to delete material that is libelous, a personal attack, or spam. We request that commenters consistently use the same login name. Comments from the same user posted under multiple aliases may be deleted. Oakland North assumes no liability for comments posted to the site and no endorsement is implied; commenters are solely responsible for their own content.

Photo by Basil D Soufi
Oakland North

Oakland North is an online news service produced by students at the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism and covering Oakland, California. Our goals are to improve local coverage, innovate with digital media, and listen to you–about the issues that concern you and the reporting you’d like to see in your community. Please send news tips to:

Latest Posts

Scroll To Top