An exploration of the UK unpaid carer's world

              Starting a session by humming, singing or playing one note breaks the ice.  Not this short
                                                                   No musical ability is needed.  Just enthusiasm.

Song and music therapy  
                                                 from 30 June and under construction

Introduction                                                                                                                                 Lots of links at foot of page.
This page is for those who hope to bring music to their special group or person.

It is not for click-happy fly-by-nights.

It doesn't matter if you can't hum, sing or play or even don't know the difference between  "God save the weazel" and "Pop goes the Queen".

If you want to go to straight to some songs and music, just one type of meat in the carer sandwich, then find 7.2

However, consider the sandwich on the plate.  The meat rests on one piece of bread - the theory.  On top of the meat is the other piece, organisation if there's more than just a few singers/listeners involved.

A bite takes a bit from all three.  Success depends on how much attention each layer receives.  It's too easy to just listen.

1    The how and why relating to song and music therapy

The aim of this page is to enable readers to see the potential for song and music therapy by showing some aspects of its use.

Readers may include:

  1. carers interested in using songs and music informally with their carees

  2. staff, carers and volunteers in the new Dementia Meeting Centres  here 
  4. song and music leaders

  5. performers

  6. healthcare professionals and other organisers 

  7. healthcare students

  8. students of music

2  How 

Some of the main forms of musical interaction include:

  1. Leading a song session wherein the audience is encouraged to participate by singing

  2. The same and the audience is encouraged to sing solo when the situation has been assessed.  

  3.  Some may make a contribution, perhaps with a story or poem.  This helps those who are shy and who may later sing solo.  Perhaps a small group will decide to sing next week.  

  4. The same as No. 1 and the audience is encouraged to play an instrument.  Finding some is no great challenge.  

  5. A song/music session wherein the audience only listens.  

  6. The audience listens and all discuss what is being listened to

  7. A programme devised by discussion.
Organisers/carers/volunteers need only make contact to discuss a best-fit programme here.

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4  The procedure

The procedure outlined here could be read in the context of being involved. 

  1. Within the aim of making use of the long-term memory  (LTM) ability of carees, songs and music which fall into their LTM are the initial focus.

  2. Elderly carees may be keen to sing Songs that won the wars here     Song quizzes here
  4. Once a range of songs and music has been established, it is possible to keep records of who is able to respond to specific songs and music and at what level - that level to be defined. 

  5. The next stage involves the introduction of new songs and music. 
  7. Repeat 5 in the new context.

  8. Evaluate.

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5   The ways in which sessions can be           run include:

  1. Singing  simple songs such as Coming round the mountains without song sheets

  2. Using song sheets or song books - example

  3. As 1 or 3 where the leader uses one or more musical  instruments 

  4. As 1 or 3 where the leader uses a backing track or

  5. As 1 or 3 where the leader uses youtube as a backing track with a Tablet/Ipad + Spotify etc and amplifier

  6. As 9 with a laptop and screen

  7. Karaoke.songs via 9 or with a player.

  8. As 5 where the carees use instruments. Next stop.

6    Instruments

The key to success

    3  Why


  1. There exists an inherent association between songs and human contact since lyrics represent melodic verbal communication. 

  2. Thus, the use of songs in music therapy can have natu­rally meaningful applications. 

  3. Elements of song experiences - 

  4. cognitive stimulation, 

  5. the building of relationships, 

  6. singing, 

  7. and listening--

  8. can provide frameworks for tension release, integration, and pleasure.

  9. In order to most effectively use song material in music therapy,  

          source - p 5 here


  1. Music therapy involves using music to aid rehabilitation. 

  2. Specific treatments may include the use of 

  3. rhythmic stimulation to aid movement 
  4. and walking, 

  5. singing to address speaking

  6. and voice quality, 

  7. listening to music to reduce pain

  8.  and the use of music improvisations to address emotional needs and enhance a sense of wellbeing.

          source -  here


  1. "Long-term memories are usually stronger than             memories of recent events."

  2. Connecting  carees with mental health issues with their early memories will exercise and, ideally,  improve their memory generally.  

  3. Those with dementia and Alzheimer's disease are not the only ones who will benefit.

  4. Alzheimer’s disease impairs memory and affects reasoning, judgment, and the ability to learn, communicate, and perform everyday functions. People with Alzheimer’s disease can quickly become confused and disoriented. 

  5. Long-term memories are usually stronger than memories of recent events.- 2.3.1   Although it can strike earlier, this progressive disease generally strikes people over age 65.

  6. source   The text may not be there any more.

  is owned by Healthline                                    Networks, Inc


Finding instruments is a matter of venture.  Charity shops and boot fairs.  Visiting music shops etc and explaining what you are doing.  

Songs and music for special needs situations  - Instruments here  

Make your own instruments.  The Tupperware container inside a tambourine is filled with pasta.
Cake tins and wooden spoons are effective.  Saucepans etc.

Start rocking sawing, man. Here. 

I am playing it in The Squiffle-Group Song -  here

Lyrics here.

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                                                                                7  Links

7.1  Various

Songs and music lists - Home page here  

Songs and music for special needs situations Home page here

Songs and music for adults with special needs here

Songs that won the wars here

Spotify here

Song quizzes here

A former version of this page is The how and why relating to song and music therapy page here   

Dementia and related topics Home page here 

Songs for carers and easily adapted for others

pagetop here        for pasting this title  Song and music therapy here