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R.I. singer-songwriter Allison Rose, on music as medicine

On the Rhode Island Report podcast, the musician and mental health counselor talks about how she is using songs to help herself and others heal

Allison Rose plays a song during the Rhode Island Report podcast.Abbey Oldham

PROVIDENCE — The COVID-19 public health emergency might be officially over, but the mental health effects will linger for years. On the Rhode Island Report podcast, mental health counselor and singer/songwriter Allison Rose talks about how she is using music to help herself and others heal.

Rose, who has appeared on “Ocean State Sessions” on Rhode Island PBS, is releasing an album this summer that includes songs about her father, Rhode Island Country Music Hall of Fame member Bill McGrath, who died of COVID-19. And she regularly uses music with her clients.

“The arts and music are ways that we connect with each other,” Rose said. “Some of the songs I have written on a personal level are outlets for me processing whatever I’m going through — more recently, grief. When I put that out there and I tell that story and I sing the song, usually there’s somebody else (who) understands and connects with that. So bringing that into therapy, I’ve written songs with clients. We’ll analyze lyrics of a song that speaks to them. We’ll just play instruments. We’ll use rhythm and sound and in group settings, play collaboratively. So it kind of brings people together.”


On the podcast, Rose plays two songs — “Where Does a Prayer Go?” and “Monarch.”

This Saturday, Rose will be taking part in Providence Porchfest, a free, family-friendly inaugural series of outdoor concerts held on porches throughout the city’s East Side. She plays at 5 p.m. at 65 Edgehill Road.

To get the latest episode each week, follow Rhode Island Report podcast on Apple Podcasts and other podcasting platforms, or listen in the player above.

Edward Fitzpatrick can be reached at Follow him @FitzProv.