Making Music with a Hearing Loss: Strategies and Stories

New book published to encourage and inspire musicians with hearing loss, their audiologists and teachers.
By: Wendy Cheng
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Hearing Loss
Recreational Music-making
Hearing Aids
Cochlear Implants


Rockville - Maryland - US


Feb. 10, 2012 - PRLog -- Many people with hearing loss mistakenly believe that making music is beyond their reach. Parents of children with hearing loss often make the same assumption. Yet, there are many deaf and hard of hearing musicians, and they sing and/or play almost any type of instrument you can imagine. They have generally grown up hearing or hard of hearing, or subsequently lost a large amount of hearing later in life. However, even deafness at birth does not necessarily preclude learning music, although it may limit some musical options.

Modern amplification technology now provides people with serious hearing loss with unprecedented access to sound that was unheard of in previous generations. Musicians with increasing hearing loss have pushed hearing aid manufacturers to provide hearing instruments that amplify across the sound spectrum, instead of just in the speech ranges as early hearing aids did. Manufacturers have been able to respond to demand as electronic technology has improved. A similar improvement in cochlear implant technology has extended sound access to deaf people---both those born deaf and those who become deaf later in life---who would have had no hope of hearing, never mind making enjoyable music.

These musical pioneers have worked with hearing healthcare professionals, music educators and each other to mutually advance the joy of making music within the hearing impaired population. The Association of Adult Musicians with Hearing Loss has been the major forum for all to work together to create a usable body of knowledge that can be widely shared among musicians, audiologists, and music educators.

Making Music with a Hearing Loss: Strategies and Stories is the result. Edited by Cherisse Miller, D.M.A., this book takes the mystery out of the musical journey by providing teaching and learning techniques that make music accessible and challenge old assumptions. This collaborative work is written by audiologists Dr. Marshall Chasin and Dr. Brad Ingrao and includes stories by 11 adult musicians with hearing loss who are members of the Association of Adult Musicians with Hearing Loss (AAMHL).

The thought of teaching and learning music with a significant hearing loss is daunting for both instructor and student, but this book will open the doors to the joy of making music for all readers. It is available for $14.95 at:

The editor, Dr. Cherisse Miller is a pianist, organist, and Music Teacher’s National Association certified piano teacher. In 2009, she obtained her Doctor of Musical Arts in Piano Pedagogy at the University of South Carolina. Dr. Miller has published two online journal articles for Pedagogy Forum in 2002 and The Hearing Review in 2009, where she discusses the challenges and strategies of musicians with hearing loss. Her dissertation is entitled Musicians with Hearing Loss: A Basic Guide for Teachers and Performers.

Dr. Marshall Chasin is the Director of Auditory Research at the Musicians' Clinics of Canada in Toronto, the Coordinator of Research at the Canadian Hearing Society, and the Director of Research at ListenUp Canada. Dr. Chasin has been involved with hearing and hearing aid assessment since 1981, having graduated with a Master of Science from the University of British Columbia. He has authored several books on hearing, hearing aids, musicians and noise exposure and over 100 clinically based articles. In 2003, he obtained his Au.D. from the Arizona School of Health Sciences.

Dr. Brad Ingrao has a long history of responding to the needs of consumers, parents and colleagues through his participation on over a dozen hearing loss-related listservs and a pro-bono website for parents.   As the Coordinator of Audiology Information Services of the Hearing Instrument Manufacturers' Software Association, he addressed quality and accessibility issues in software used for fitting hearing aids. Dr. Ingrao is now principal audiologist and consultant for

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We are a nonprofit with a mission to serve adults who have hearing loss but want to integrate music performance or recreational music making in their lives.
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