Love of music spawns incredible outreach

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If not for music, good friends Ashley Brightwell and JP Maloney might never have met.

“We always ran into each other at concerts,” Brightwell said. “That’s the only time we ever saw each other.”

Since then, they’ve been in harmony. Figuring there were more people just like them, the two started a music blog.

“Music brings people together,” Brightwell said.

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Eventually, though, they felt they could do more.

“You know, help people,” Maloney said.

“You want to change the world, you have to start with yourself,” Brightwell said.

With that in mind, JP and Ashley started a nonprofit called “Music is our Weapon.” They partnered with Sage Oak Assisted Living to use music in order to help patients rekindle a piece of their past.

People like Parkinson’s patient Harold Jones. At one point, Harold was an incredible jazz guitarist. He was in a band and even played songs for his wife.

Today, though, his old bass just sits by his bedside. Although he can no longer play, Ashley and JP gave Harold the chance to listen. Parkinson’s may have stolen much of his ability to move or talk, but his fingers remembered every note.

Keep in mind, Ashley and JP don’t get paid for this. Both have day jobs. They simply believe in the power of music.

“Sometimes a simple song can 100 percent change somebody,” Maloney said.

“It just keeps bringing me back cause I know it’s a void that needs to be filled,” Brightwell added.

And at least for this moment, it’s a song of hope.

Sadly, Harold Jones passed away shortly after the filming of this story. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family.

To learn more about Music is Our Weapon, go here. For more information about Sage Oak Assisted Living, go here.