A Man's Heart Is Healed by Playing Music for Dying People
As a young man, Steve Litwer wanted to be a musician. Largely self-taught on the guitar, he lacked the talent to play professionally, so he chose another career path, working for a series of popular music radio stations in Kansas City, Memphis, and Charlotte.
Needing something good to do when he retired, Steve chose to volunteer as a bedside musician, playing guitar for hospice patients. Unexpectedly, his private performances and companionship offered to those nearing the end of their lives began to unlock long-buried memories of his own past.
The result? Surprising lessons and new insights about the events of his life and finding the path to forgiveness for himself and his mother, for whom he had long held resentment. Mentally ill, she had struggled to raise her sons.
Incorporating moving and funny true stories of people in hospice and their love for the popular music that was the soundtrack of their lives, The Music Between Us explores the mysterious ways that Steve was led to reckon with emotional wounds from childhood that had spilled over into many of his key relationships throughout his life and discover fresh joy. It is a celebration both of music and of the power of human connection.
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Table of Contents
1: The Oldest Rock and Roll Groupie
2: The Woman Who Wasn't Looking for a Husband
3: The After Beats
4: Meatballs with a Side of Music
5: The Unlikely Hippie
6: Messy Rooms
7: On Hearing
8: Whoopee! We're All Gonna Die
9: Eloise and Her Roommate
10: Free Voice Lessons
11: The Graduate and the First Grader
12: Ten-minute Judy
13: Cool Jazz, Jet Setting and Prayer
14: Tuesdays with Owen
15: Until Death Do Us Part
16: The Artist, Entrepreneur, and Hustler
17: Betty Boop Philosophy
18: The Family Who Knew How to Say Goodbye
19: Harold Gives Me a Warning
20: The Man Who Knew Over One Hundred Interesting Celebrities (One Way or Another)
21: Sleepy Gene's Old Time Gospel Hour
22: David and the Two Cooks
23: Grace Notes
24: The Woman Who Knew Things
25: All Blues Ain't Blue
26: "Do you believe in miracles?"
27: Fifteen Pieces of Advice for the Living
28: The Converts
29: The Patient Who Helped Me See
30: The Sisters of Charity
31: "I'm ready and there are those waiting in the wings"
32: The Superiority of One Noodle Over a Guitar
33: A Conversation with My Mother
About the Author