Wis. man helps wife fight Alzheimer’s with music

Madison, Wisconsin (WMTV) – While many people have found that music can brighten their day or heal a broken heart, one couple believes a beautiful song can also fight illness. I’m here.

Jill McGlauchlin and Joe McNally are a husband and wife musician duo known as the Jaybirds. The two, with McGlauchlin on fiddle and McNally on banjo, share music with residents of Eden Vista, a nursing home in Madison, almost every day.

“We take turns. I pick the songs, he picks the songs,” McGrawlin said.

McGlauchlin is also an Eden Vista resident. She moved there in 2018 after she found out about Alzheimer’s disease.

“This is a daily challenge,” McNally says. “But coming here and playing music just makes my day a little richer.”

He said his mother was inspired by the Greek goddess of music, the goddess of memory.

The Mayo Clinic writes online that people with Alzheimer’s disease often have musical memories. That’s because “the key brain regions associated with musical memory are relatively undamaged by this disease.”

Research also suggests that listening to and singing songs may provide emotional and behavioral benefits for patients.

McNally now wants to share his music with people outside of Eden Vista. He wants to record his own music sessions so that people around the world can hear them.

If you would like to support their project financially, please visit their GoFundMe page here.

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