Saturday, December 20, 2008

December 20, 2008 - The Bonny Method of Guided Imagery & Music

My guest this week is Dr. Cohen. Nicki S. Cohen is Professor of Music Therapy and Voice at Texas Woman’s University in Denton, TX and a faculty member of the Anna Maria College Institute for Music and Imagery. She received a Ph.D. in Music Education from the University of Kansas; an M.A. in Vocal Performance from the University of Denver; and a B.S. in Music Education from Duquesne University, Pittsburgh, PA. She has been a clinical music therapist since 1978, and earned her status as a practitioner of the Bonny Method of Guided Imagery and Music in 2001. She is a Fellow of the Association for Music and Imagery (FAMI).

Dr. Cohen served on the Board of Directors of the American Music Therapy Association (AMTA) as Chairperson of the Advisory Board for Education and Clinical Training and as Council Coordinator for the Council on Education and Clinical Training, and she served on the editorial board of the Journal of Music Therapy. She also recently completed her term as the President of the Association for Music and Imagery. Presently, Dr. Cohen is a member of the AMTA Advisory Board for Education and Clinical Training and on the editorial board for the Journal of the Association for Music and Imagery. Dr. Cohen is working towards her primary trainer status for the Association for Music and Imagery.

Nicki Cohen has worked with different clientele, including individuals with autism, developmental disabilities, schizophrenia, behavioral disorders, post-traumatic stress disorders, and neurological impairments. Her research has focused primarily on the application of singing to improve speech production in patients with neurogenic speech disorders, music therapy education, and Guided Imagery and Music. Dr. Cohen has served as an external reviewer for the theses and dissertations of international students in Australia, Canada, and Denmark. She is an active lecturer, and has been a featured speaker at both national and international conferences. A great deal of her music therapy and Bonny Method practice has included adaptive arts techniques for patients who require a more structured yet creative therapeutic environment.

Learn more at her website:

Also check out the Association for Music and Imagery to find more information or to locate a practitioner.

This is the last week to win A Kids N Tunes Christmas CD, donated by Ed Gallagher at the Beck Center in Ohio. Be the first person to leave a comment on this post to win a CD!

Listen to this show here.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

December 13, 2008 - Palliative Care & Hospice

This week my guest is Lisa Gallagher, MA, MT-BC, a clinical and research music therapist at The Cleveland Music School Settlement and The Cleveland Clinic and the Music Therapy Coordinator for the Cleveland Clinic. She has presented on local, regional, national, and international levels and has published articles in several journals. She currently is the Treasurer of the Great Lakes Region of the American Music Therapy Association, the Chair of the Certification Board of Music Therapists Board of Directors, and a recipient of the 2008 Blair L. Sadler International Healing Arts Award.

For more information: and and

To listen to the show: Click here.

December 6, 2008 - The Joyful Singers

The Joyful Singers are a group of adults with developmental disAbilities that plan performances. They perform in various locations throughout their community in Garland, Texas and learn music & singing skills, while also developing social, communication, and executive function skills.

Listen to this show here.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

November 29, 2008 - Thanksgiving Special

Today's show is a short one expressing my gratitude for the people who support this show. I’d like to thank Blog Talk Radio for hosting the show, thanks to Susie Moten, Bill Matney, Krystal Demaine, Mary Lawrence, Michelle Kennemer, Michelle Melander, Dale Taylor, Robert Krout, Barbara Else, Debbie Dacus, Kathleen Coleman, Terri Hart, Ann Petty, Ellary Draper, Cathy Knoll, Kim McVean, Veronica Butler, Stephanie Shehan, Louise Montello, Wade Richards, and Ed Kahler for being guests on my show. Thanks also to for hosting our blog. Thank you Ed Gallagher for being my guest today. Thank you Kevin Lindstrom, for helping me get this show started, for guest hosting, and for writing and performing the music for the show. And thanks to all of you who listen to the show each week. I really appreciate it and would love to hear from you.

I also have a surprise for my listeners. Check out the show to find out what it is!

Saturday, November 22, 2008

November 15, 2008 - AMTA Conference Report

Broadcasting live from Expanding the Gateway to Music Therapy: The 10th Anniversary Conference of the American Music Therapy Association at the Millennium Hotel in St. Louis, Missouri. Listen live here.

November 15, 2008 - AMTA Conference Preview

Barbara Else, MPA, LCAT, MT-BC, AMTA Consultant, provided a preview of Expanding the Gateway to Music Therapy: The 10th Anniversary Conference of the American Music Therapy Association in St. Louis, MO. Listen here.

Friday, November 7, 2008

November 8, 2008 -- Biomedical Theory of Music as Therapy

Music Therapy is the enhancement of human capabilities through the planned use of musical influences on human brain functioning. Dr. Dale Taylor is our guest this week to speak about the Biomedical Theory of Music in Therapy. Listen here.

November 1, 2008 -- FAQautism

Cathy Knoll, MA, MT-BC is a board certified music therapist with over 30 years clinical experience with children, teens, and adults diagnosed with autism. is designed to respond to specific questions from individuals with autism and their family members, teachers, therapists, employers, medical professionals, residential staff, job coaches, and others interested in the well-being of people with autism. Listen here.

October 25, 2008 -- Sensory Nanny

Kim McVean, aka Sensory Nanny, is an occupational therapist and a mother of twins who have Autism. She joined us to talk about sensory issues and music therapy. Listen here. Check out her show here. Visit her website

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Saturday, October 11, 2008 - Music Therapy in Public Schools Part 3

The third installment in our Public Schools series features Michelle Melander, a music therapist with Plano ISD. She talks about the differences between Consult-to-Program, Consult-to-Student, and Direct Service Models of music therapy in public schools. Listen to this show here.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Two weeks off

The Music Therapy Show is taking two weeks off (September 27 and October 4). The show will be back October 11, at 4:00 pm Central, with Michelle Melander. This will be the third of four shows featuring music therapy in Public Schools. Tune in Saturday to hear how music therapy is used in Plano ISD.

September 20, 2008 -- SEMTAP: Special Education Music Therapy Assessment Process

Kathleen Coleman is here to discuss music therapy assessments in public schools. After many years in which she started several of the music therapy programs which still exist in north Texas, Kathleen now has a private practice working with clients who have developmental disabilities. She also teaches piano and guitar, provides consulting services for school districts, agencies, and therapists nationwide, and is involved in dachshund rescue (with four dachshunds at home!). Listen to this show here.

September 13, 2008 -- Hurricane Ike is our guest today....

Due to technical difficulties, we will not be able to bring you a show this week. Please enjoy one of the archive shows and we will be back next week at our usual time (5:00 Eastern, 4:00 Central).

Saturday, September 13, 2008

September 6, 2008 -- Music Therapy in Public Schools Part 2

Debbie Dacus is our guest today. She has over 20 years experience and works for Birdville ISD and maintains a private practice. She has also co-authored Socially Smart: Teaching Social Skills Through Scripts and Songs, a resource for teaching social skills to students with communication disorders and Learning Through Music: Music Therapy Strategies for Special Education. Listen to the show here.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

August 30, 2008 - Music Therapy in Rise Schools

Veronica Llanos Butler, MT-BC, MSEd, MT-BC, LMT, NMT Fellow, is our guest this week. Veronica is currently the music therapist and music therapy internship program director at The Rise School of Houston, a non-profit early intervention preschool for children with and without developmental disabilities ages 6 months to 6 years of age. Listen to the show here, or click on the play button on the right.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

August 23, 2008 - Music Therapy in a Consult-to-Program Model

Michelle Kennemer, MT-BC, Bill Matney, MA, MT-BC, and Mary Lawrence, MT-BC, are my guests this week to talk about the music therapy program in Lewisville ISD. They describe the Consult-to-Program Model and tell about their experiences as music therapists in public schools. To listen to this show, click here.

August 16, 2008 - Music Therapy University Degree Programs

Continuing our Music Therapy in Schools Series, Dr. Ed Kahler, Director of Music Therapy at West Texas A & M University, is our guest this week. He describes what a music therapy student might expect. Klacey called in to share her story about why she decided to get a music therapy degree. Listen to this very compelling show here.

Thanks to Kevin Lindstrom for guest-hosting this week. I was headed towards a plane coming back from a meeting with Dr. Kahler. We tried to make time for me to give a live interview, but the transportation schedule did not allow that. Kevin and Ed were wonderful, though, and I encourage all of you to download this show.

Friday, August 15, 2008

August 9, 2008 - Music Therapy in Schools Series

This week we’re beginning our Music Therapy in Schools Series. Krystal Demaine called in to discuss some research she's participating in for children with Autism and public school assessments.

Listen here to find out more.

August 2, 2008 - World Congress & Music and Neurosciences

This week Robert Krout called in to tell us about the 12th World Congress on Music Therapy in Buenos Aires, Argentina and Krystal Demaine shared her experiences at the Neurosciences and Music conference in Montreal.

The World Federation of Music Therapy, Incorporated (WFMT) is the only international organization dedicated to the development and promotion of music therapy world wide and was established at the 5th World Congress of Music Therapy in Genoa Italy, in 1985. The principal objective of the WFMT is to act as the International Organization for the profession of music therapy.

The main theme of the Neurosciences and Music conference is research on interactions between music and the human brain in healthy and pathologic conditions. The conference focused on many topics such as: the importance of music in the biologic and cultural evolution of man, differences between musicians trained at an early or late age, congenital amusia, absolute pitch, the relationship between the study of music and intellectual abilities in children, musical abilities in behavioural disorders and genetic syndromes, music perception in cochlear implant patients, dystonias in musicians, the effectiveness of music as a means to reduce the perception of pain, and music rehabilitation. The event is mostly targeted to medical professionals, neuroscientists, neurologists, psychologists, educators, music therapists, musicologists, and sound engineers.

To learn more about these conferences, listen here.

Friday, August 1, 2008

August Back to School Series

For August, I am having a back to school series on The Music Therapy Show.

August 2 will have reports from Robert Krout who attended the World Congress in Buenos Aires and Krystal Demaine who attended the Music and Neurosciences conference in Canada.

August 9 will feature Music Therapy Community Music Schools with Wade Richards and Krystal Demaine.

August 16 will feature Music Therapy University Programs with Ed Kahler

August 23 will feature Music Therapy in Public Schools Part 1 with Michelle Kennemer, Bill Matney, and Mary Lawrence.

August 30 will feature Music Therapy in Rise Schools with Veronica Butler

September 6 will feature Music Therapy in Public Schools Part 2 with Debbie Dacus

September 13 will feature Music Therapy in Public Schools Part 3 with Terri Hart and Ann Petty

Thanks for listening!

Saturday, July 26, 2008

July 26, 2008 - Future topics, Community Music Schools, Vocal Yoga

This week, we experienced some technical difficulties, so I apologize if you tried to listen live and could not get the show. The archive is working, and you can find it here.

Next month, I want to feature Music Therapy in school settings. If you work in a school setting, leave a comment on this post or send me an email and let me know what you do and which Saturday you will be available for an interview on a future show.

Other shows I'd like to feature are music therapy research, sensory integration, University programs, geriatrics, hospice, private practice, and Guided Imagery in Music. If you have expertise in these areas and would like to be interviewed, please contact me.

Thanks, Wade, for calling in this week and sharing about your work in Community Music Schools. He also described a Vocal Yoga class, so listen to the show for more information.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

July 19, 2008 - Developmental Disabilities

Developmental Disabilities are a diverse group of severe chronic conditions that are due to mental and/or physical impairments. People with developmental disabilities have problems with major life activities such as language, mobility, learning, self-help, and independent living.

This week's show gives some ideas and resources for using music therapy with adults with developmental disabilities. When you listen to the show, please take some time to comment on the show (or on this blog entry) and let me know what you think. Please rate the show and offer some ideas about what you'd like to hear in the future.

July 12, 2008 - The Music Therapy Show

Thanks, Kevin, for guest hosting for me this week. I was away, but was able to call in for the Music Therapy in Action segment of the show, which featured Musical Sensory Orientation Training, a Neurologic Music Therapy technique.

Please listen to the show and let me know what you think! Leave a comment here or on the show page and rate the show.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

July 5, 2008 - Neurologic Music Therapy

On today's show, we talked with Stephanie Shehan, a Neurologic Music Therapist from Austin, TX. We discussed what neurologic music therapy is and how it works with various clients.

Neurologic Music Therapy is a specialization in music therapy in which you study neurological processes and learn about specific techniques based on neurological research.

Listen to the show here, and while your there, take a moment to leave a comment and rate the show! Let me know what topics you're interested in, or suggest a historical fact or website about music therapy to be featured on the show.

June 28, 2008 - Structuring a Music Therapy Session

Today, we answered a question submitted by a listener on how to structure a session when a parent or caregiver is participating in the session.
  • Acknowledge that the caregiver may not be getting his/her social needs met and help the caregiver address these needs outside the session
  • Share your goals and treatment plan with the caregiver
  • Invite the caregiver to participate in the session in a specific way
For more information, listen to this weeks' show.

And if you have a question or a topic you'd like to have addressed on the show, leave a comment here or email me at

June 21, 2008 - Stress Management

This week, we talked about Stress Management and Music Therapy. There are several ways to use music to manage stress.
  • Listen to music that you enjoy
  • Practice relaxation techniques accompanied by music
  • Express your emotions, thoughts, and feelings by writing or improvising a song
Music Therapy becomes a part of Stress Management when a board certified music therapist designs a specific treatment plan with measurable goals to help the client manage stress.

For more information, listen to the archived show.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

June 14, 2008 - Music Therapy and Autism

This week's show focused on autism and how music therapy is used with people who have autism. There were some technical difficulties during this show, so hopefully those get ironed out before next week's show.

I encourage everyone who deals with autism in any capacity to check out Cathy Knoll is a music therapist with over 30 years experience with people diagnosed with autism. is designed to respond to specific questions from individuals with autism and their family members, teachers, therapists, employers, medical professionals, residential staff, job coaches, and others interested in the well-being of people with autism.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

June 7, 2008 - Feedback wanted!

We've been on the air for over a month now and I'm interested in what you think! This week's show is a review of the past 5 shows and I would love to hear your feedback. Email me at or leave a comment here and tell me what you liked, what you think I can improve on, and what you'd like to hear in the future.

I have some exiting guests lined up for some future shows, but I'm always looking for content ideas and want to know what topics you would like to hear about.

I'd also like to know what you think about our features: the Music Therapy Historical Note of the Week, the Website of the Week, and Music Therapy in Action. Do you have any ideas for these features? Leave me a comment or drop me an email.

Which shows have you listened to?

When do you usually listen?

Is there a time you would prefer to have the live show so that it's more convenient for you to call in?

Let me know! Listen here.

Saturday, May 31, 2008

May 31, 2008 - Performance Wellness Part III

First off, we're back from Pennsylvania and back at our usual time - 5:00 Eastern/4:00 Central. Hopefully you will all join us for today's show.

We'll be going over the last part of the Performance Wellness information, as well as doing our website of the week and the music therapy historical note of the week.

This week, we'll be adding a new feature: Music Therapy In Action - designed for those who aren't music therapists but want to know more about it. Usually it will be an example of a music therapy technique, and we'll break it down so that laypersons can see how we use music as therapy.

The Website of the Week is Time for Music. It is the personal and professional website of Wade Richards, a music therapist in Rochester, New York. On this site he shares the classes, workshops and music therapy services that he provides.

See you this afternoon at 5:00 Eastern, 4:00 Central on The Music Therapy Show with Janice Harris!

Monday, May 26, 2008

Performance Wellness - May 24 Follow up

Thanks to everyone who joined us on Saturday. Sorry again for the odd time - we'll be back to our usual time this Saturday (May 31) - 5:00 Eastern/4:00 Central. It was just so great, though, to do the show from the Performance Wellness course in Pennsylvania.

If you missed the show, you can listen to it here. Other than a minor issue with the opening music (it was a little too loud, but once we passed through it, the sound was great the rest of the way, so bear with us through that), it was a great show. I was able to describe the beautiful country Dr. Montello's place is in, as well as her house and the people joining me in the program. I went into some detail about Performance Wellness, although I hope to do more next week as a wrap-up of my experience this weekend.

We were also able to answer some questions from the chatroom that were very thoughtful and insightful. I've never been more aware of the fact that audience participation really makes the show something special, and I encourage everyone to join me - whether you call in, or join the chatroom, or email me. Just please join the conversation.

Part of the questions related to treating people with autism. You can see the link I reference in the show here on the right - FAQ Autism. As I mentioned on the show, this is a page run by a music therapist (Cathy Knoll, MA, MT-BC) and she updates the page quite often.

Two of the questions came from Dr. Kirnon. She has her own Saturday morning Blog Talk Radio Show, "Health and Wellness", as well as a blog of the same name, and her business website, Solutions Health and Wellness. I hope to get to know her better as she seems very professional and insightful.

A little later in the week, I'll supplement this note with a few things, including the Mayo Clinic study I referenced and some other cool things from the weekend.

Thanks again for joining us here on the blog. Please join us on the show as well.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Performance Wellness - Vol. II

I wanted to talk about a few things going into next week's show.

First, please note that we will be at a temporarily new time. The show on May 24th will broadcast on our Blog Talk Radio location at 1:30 Eastern, 12:30 Central.

Second is the reason for the new time - I'm going to be in Pennsylvania taking a Performance Wellness course!

Third, I wanted to highlight the Performance Wellness website.

It is an incredibly well written and well organized site that covers all aspects of Performance Wellness. We discussed Performance Wellness a lot on today’s show(Listen), although in a lot of ways we just scratched the surface. Please take the time to check out the website for the world of great opportunities Dr. Montello can provide.

So join us this Saturday for our show!

Saturday, May 17, 2008

May 17, 2008 Show - Performance Wellness

I am so excited about this week's show! Today, I had Dr. Louise Montello as a guest to talk about Performance Wellness and Essential Musical Intelligence. (Listen to the show).

She actually does music therapy for musicians!

Most music therapists get asked whether music therapy is therapy for sick musicians and we explain that, no, you don't have to be a musician to receive music therapy. We usually have to explain further that music therapy is the enhancement of human capabilities through the planned use of music on human brain functioning. Meaning that music therapy address cognitive, speech/language, and sensorimotor rehabilitation.

However, musicians also have physical and emotional issues that can be healed by music therapy. We had a great introduction to ways to identify and address these issues in the show.

To learn more about Performance Wellness music therapy and hear the great discussion we had with her - including some great questions from the chatroom - Listen to the archived show.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Why would someone need music therapy?

On the May 10, 2008 show, we discussed who might benefit from music therapy, among other things. Listen to the show by clicking here.

Music therapy may be beneficial for people who:
  • are low-functioning and do not respond to other interventions/activities
  • do not attend or participate in other interventions/activities
  • have changed physical, cognitive, or social functioning
  • have cognitive deficits and are not able to socialize appropriately
  • have physical deficits and are not making progress in physical/occupational therapy
  • have a speech/language disorder and is not making progress in speech therapy
  • are depressed/anxious and is not able to participate in psychological services
  • do not comply with therapy
  • have behavior problems
  • have high blood pressure that is difficult to manage with meds alone
  • have difficulty sleeping at night
  • are on hospice care
  • are not making progress in school
For more details about this topic, listen to the archives or call in to next week's show. You may also leave a comment here.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

May 10, 2008 Show - Referrals

On today's show, we are going to talk about Music Therapy referrals - when they are appropriate, why to make or seek a referral, and how to get music therapy. You can listen to the show by clicking here.

Referrals work differently in different settings, so if you have a question about how to get music therapy in a specific setting, please call in at 646-652-2850 at 5:00 p.m. ET/4:00 p.m. CT.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Drum Circles

This week's show (archived here) attempted to answer questions about Drum Circles, specifically, "When is a drum circle appropriate, and why is it a better choice than other therapies in specific situations?"

Active music making influences our thoughts and feelings differently from passive music listening. Active music making expands our mental abilities, helps to relieve stress through the focus and awareness of the whole person, and helps create positive self regard.
Drumming is a great way to participate in active music making. Drumming is accessible to all skill levels. Group drumming is an ancient healing practice and is not about skill level, technique or showing off.

Drum circles are not necessarily music therapy. Drum circles are oriented around building a social community, recreational music making, and a sense of individual accomplishment. A music therapist may use a drum circle to foster growth and development in functional domains, such as social, physical, or communicative goals. So a drum circle does not have to be led by a music therapist and a participant may find it therapeutic. However, in order for a drum circle to be music therapy, it must be led by a music therapist who is using the drum circle to reach specific goals for a specific reason.

You can find more information on this topic in Susan Gardstrom's book, Music Therapy Improvisation for Groups: Essential Music Competencies, published by Barcelona.

You can also attend a Drum Circle Music Workshop with Kalani. For more information, go to

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Inaugural Show - May 3, 2008

The Music Therapy Show will broadcast its first official show today, Saturday, May 3, 2008 at 4:00 pm Central, 5:00 pm Eastern. Please listen to the show on Blog Talk Radio and call in to join the conversation: (646) 652-2850. You can also log in to Blog Talk Radio to participate in the chat. I won't be able to monitor the chat during the show, but I will respond to the chat immediately following the show.

Today's show will introduce the purpose of the show, who I am, and discuss Drum Circles and any other question you call in to ask. If you can't listen to the show live, please send me a question to address on a future show at

Thanks for listening!

Monday, April 28, 2008

Hello, and welcome to The Music Therapy Show!

What an incredible first step, and thank you for joining us on the journey!

It is about time, too, we think.

Time for music therapy to have a larger voice, a broader voice. And this blog and radio show will be the conduit for that voice.

Join us here for a chance to read about, discuss and learn about all things related to music therapy.

Part of the discussion is the international radio show, The Music Therapy Show with Janice Harris. It happens every Saturday at 5:00 Eastern/2:00 Pacific. We’d love to hear from you, whether you are a Music Therapist, is someone who either is or knows someone who is a client who receives music therapy or is someone who just wants to know more.

The show is broadcast on the internet via Blog Talk Radio, and we greatly appreciate their help in sharing Music Therapy with the world. You can listen to the show live or via archive HERE. The call in number is (646) 652-2850 if you want to call in between 5:00 and 6:00 ET this Saturday.

This week will be the inaugural show. We’ll introduce the host, Janice Harris, MT-BC, from Dallas, Texas, discuss some of the basics of Music Therapy and take some calls. If we have time, we’ll go into more detail about some specific ways that Music Therapy helps geriatric patients.

Looking long term, we'd eventually like to have guests on the show, as well as touch on some of the history of Music Therapy, current research being done in the field of Music Therapy and possibly highlight some Music Therapy organizations and information sources.

We're always looking for content ideas so let us know what you would like to hear on the show or see on these pages by emailing to Whether it be a guest you'd like to hear from or an issue you'd like us to discuss, drop us a line.

While you're here, take a look at our links section to the right for more information about Music Therapy and other related things.

So thanks again for joining us, and we're looking forward to a great conversation!