Donny has a BA in Music and Psychology and a K-9 teaching credential and music endorsement. He has worked years as an activity director and music therapist and is Heart and Hope’s only fully employed Music Therapist for elders and adults with mental and physical disabilities. He was an elementary school Music Specialist for Central Point District #6 for fourteen years and spent 25 years as a professional entertainer.
He is devoted to promoting love, hope, comfort, humor, and healing through music as an advocate for vulnerable people, including the frail and elderly.
A Northwest folk singer and member of the local Songwriter’s Association (SOSA) who plays acoustic guitar and writes inspirational healing, and encouraging music in the following styles: Folk, Country, Gospel, Jazz, Pop, World, and Traditional.
Julie has volunteered her time performing for benefits and fundraisers for local community non-profit agencies, and churches in support of the elderly (Heart and Hope Ministries), the homeless (Medford Gospel Mission), and drug addiction (Celebrate Recovery).
In support of seniors, she is enthusiastic and proud to utilize music therapy as a vital force and holistic tool that gives hope and positively increases the participant’s mood, behavior, and socialization skills.
TALIA ROSE is a professional harpist, singer, and native American Flutist, as well as a group song leader. She has performed for over 20 years throughout the Rogue Valley and beyond. She believes that music creates a unifying field of love and blessing and that it keeps folks believing in something greater than themselves (the whole is more than the sum of the parts). Music nurtures our hearts and gives us faith in beauty and goodness.
She has played therapeutic music for individuals and groups – locally in the Ashland Community Hospital and elder residences, as well as being a long term independent contractor for Asante Hospice and Heart & Hope Music. She has also shared her music in schools and churches, at music festivals and concert venues, and for special events such as weddings and memorial services.
She believe that music is key to transmuting the dire effects of the current ‘pandemic’ as peaceful resonance is key to bringing relaxation and good feelings, thus activating the parasympathetic nervous system and bolstering the immune system.
May all people be well! May all people be happy! Peace, peace, peace…
Blades of Grass has been performing in the Rogue Valley since 2013. The duo frequently expands into a trio or larger band adding stand up bass dobro and fiddle. Their broad repertoire is a blend of bluegrass, 1940s swing standards, country swing, gypsy jazz, vintage country, Texas swing, original compositions and more.
Kathryn plays acoustic guitar and Jef plays mandolin; they harmonize and share lead vocals. Kathryn grew up in the Ozark mountains of Missouri and has roots in country, folk and bluegrass music. She trained in classical piano for 9 years. Jef has trained her in both vocals and guitar skills.
Jef worked regularly for 30 years as the frontman of a variety of popular acoustic bands in the Seattle region and has performed alongside some of the best bluegrass and swing players in the World. Before that, he was a street performer in the Puget Sound and in Austin, Texas.
They have performed in the Rogue Valley for Festivals, wineries, private parties, weddings, restaurants, and retirement homes.
Frankie Hernandez is an institution in Southern Oregon. His infectious smile and radiant optimism have helped him to develop a following and community rapport as a band leader, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and worship leader. He has played nearly every major venue in his area; including performances on stage as a guest artist with Los Lobos and Michael Franti.
Some of the songs that he has written have been featured on television and radio around the world, including: Hotel Hell, LA Ink and Myth Busters. He is also known for his generous appearances at charitable events and has helped to raise money and awareness for causes varying from fire relief and Puerto Rico hurricane victims to local businesses and families in need. Currently he has three recordings available and is recording his first worship, contemporary Christian album. He is a revival artist
Music has been my life’s calling since I first started playing piano at age five. In college as a music major focused on piano studies, I discovered harp and studied that on the side. I’ve been very blessed to be able to share my music with others since college, whether it be as a public school & university music educator, youth chorus conductor, community choral conductor, special event performer, ensemble member, or hospice harpist. All of these experiences literally play into the breadth of my understanding in providing the perfect “musical score” for any special event for which I now perform.
My focus at this point in my life is therapeutic harp music. I have been fortunate to be able to provide soothing harp music for Providence Harpist for more than eight years. I currently Zoom a special “healing circle” to people across the country, including Mexico. I also offer an Airbnb Online Experience in their Music/Wellness category.
As in any arena of life, there is no substitute for quality, experience, knowledge, finesse, and elegance. These qualities sound through the music I create whether for the therapeutic music I provide, for hospice, for concerts and special events, or for a wedding, vow renewal, or memorial service.
“He just woke up for the first time in years. I want to hire you to sing for his birthday.”
Holly HimesFacilities Coordinator
Just wanted to say thank you for the beautiful songs you write. I purchased one of your CDs many summers ago at Kayumari. I hadn't listened to it much recently but still had it around. I was feeling kind of down and overwhelmed by oil spills, the state of the world, and living with a depressed spouse. I started listening to your songs again and memorizing them as I drove to work. They helped me to realize and remember that the only thing I can do is to be loving and kind, do my best to use the resources of the earth as minimally as I can and walk in peace. So now every time I get stressed or anxious I sing one of the songs and gradually I feel better.
I have memorized 3 so far and almost have the 4th one down. A much better use of my time than worrying.
“Louise, who was languishing, seven months after a massive stroke sang, “O What A Beautiful Morning” 1st verse and chorus, in pitch, every word, while her brother sobbed at the sight.”
As far as our conversation, the songs that I have moved my spirit, from Open Your Heart, are:
One Minute to Midnight
Practicing Your Presence
Light of Your Love
Up, Up, Up Into the Presence
I will talk to you when it gets closer to a solid recording. The following is what I feel about your music:
The spirituality invoked lifts the inner being to a higher elevation. As I was driving through Mount Shasta and listening to your songs, I experienced a deepened physical sense of God's Presence. It was quite remarkable. Your music encapsulates the Spirit. I am sincerely grateful for this treasure of music.
JennaleeSkylark Assisted Living Memory Care Unit
"Hi, I'm Jennalee and I work in the Activities Department of Skylark Assisted Living Memory Care Unit. Heart and Hope Ministries comes into our community every Monday to play music and enrich the lives of our residents, and I must say that it is always one of the brightest parts of my week. The therapeutic effects of music, and power of the kindness and positive energy that Heart and Hope's volunteers radiate never ceases to amaze me. People with memory disorders who have issues remembering many other things always remember the Heart and Hope crew. People who are normally reserved will sing and dance and those who are agitated or anxious always feel soothed and calmed. During the slow, relaxing tunes some people will nod off into a nap and wake up a few moments later with a smile, ready to sing along to the next song. The smiles on their faces are genuine and the happiness lasts throughout the day. In the evening I always can hear the residents and staff humming or whistling a tune from the show hours earlier. It reminds me of the simple things in life that are deeply ingrained within us and bring joy no matter our age or ability.
The volunteers of Heart and Hope Ministries are wonderful people who are kind, warm, and generous. They remember all the residents' names and favorite songs, and always have many kind words and smiles for everyone. I believe they improve and enrich the lives of everyone their paths cross, and I highly recommend their services to anyone, even if only for the simple pleasure of listening to a classic, lovely song played beautifully. Thank you to everyone at Heart and Hope for all that you do!"
Janet A.Gilman House, AFC
“I feed and wash and clothe them and you bring them happiness.”
Dar WolberAdministrator, Roxy Ann MC
"Donny comes to Roxy Ann Every Monday at 10:45 and does a wonderful job of interacting with our Elders. It is not a performance but Donny leading the group in various forms and styles of music. Donny is an expert in getting his group to not only sing along but often to dance and play musical instruments with him. He knows every resident by name and has so much compassion for our Elders. He is loved by all. Join us anytime."
Stacey KearnsJackson House Assisted Living Talent, OR
"I was so thrilled to see you there with all of your bells and whistles. My dad has lived there since January. I apologize for any rude behavior he may have targeted you with. He's a bit moody these days. He's the grumpy one named Doug who is missing most of his fingers on one hand. I came by one time and Dad was actually enjoying himself with some small bell ringing. It was a joy for me to witness. Thank you so much for taking the time to come to Jackson House. It really meant so much to me to see such a happy expression on my dad's face. You are an unsung hero.
Mike and I have thought about you often and have wondered where you had disappeared. Ran into you some time ago around our neighborhood in Talent. You were quite happy at the time with one of your kids’ accomplishments at med school. If this gives you an idea of how long ago it's been.
But the real reason I am hoping this message gets to you is about your quiet and loyal servitude with the Elders in your community. Thank you so much for making my dad smile. Thank you for giving my dad something to whine about. He never has been an easy one to please so don't take his complaining, if that is the mood he is in that day, too personally. Thank you Donny, for being such a giving man."
“You made my whole day better!!”
RochellePhyllis’ daughter in Law
“If you knew Phyllis’ story you’d see that what you’re doing is miraculous.”