Contributed by: Gabriela Torres 

Friday mornings at posAbilities don’t follow the routine of a typical work day. From 10:30am to 12:30pm a few team members and persons served who share an enthusiasm, passion and love for music, come together at Suna Studios to jam out. The posAbilities house band, formed when Terry Eadie, Team Manager of group homes and day programs, recognized two members on his team with musical talent. Excited by this discovery, he jumped at the opportunity to form a band that was welcoming and inclusive of all. This opportunity was exciting for Terry and the various team members chosen to facilitate the band’s activities. They agreed to be a part of the band because well…being able to create music, dance and sing while at work was a pretty sweet deal and sharing the experience with the incredible people of posAbilities was an added bonus.

Suna Studios is where the house band meets every week to create their musical masterpieces. It’s a place created by local artists for local artists that opened in response to the need for more quality jam halls in Vancouver. As a space that encourages the development of local music and the growth of local artists, Suna Studios has become the perfect location for our house band to practice. Robert Stewart, the owner of Suna Studios and host of the posAbilities house band, has allocated a music hall to us in order to boost community involvement and spread awareness about the benefits of music therapy. He believes it is a wonderful opportunity and learning experience for those involved and has even provided the band with a drum and keyboard set. Thanks Rob! You rock (pun intended).

The laid back atmosphere at Suna Studios was more than welcoming. It was definitely an exciting and fun experience to see the various jammers experiment with instruments and create music on the spot! The band is currently on a three month trial period and the musicians have yet to come up with a band name. Though a few suggestions were sent to the jammers from head office, the members are focusing on securing a feel for the band and the music they play prior to solidifying a name of any sort. Many people from the day program are involved in music creation for the band where they are free to sing, dance and play all the instruments they wish! In fact, they are even encouraged to bring their own.

So far, these music whizzes have had one big jam day where they played from a song book with enthusiasm, excitement and a plethora of energy! This session turned into somewhat of a karaoke day when team members David and Seth connected their smart-phones to YouTube and played music from large speakers. Everyone was singing and playing along to hits like Drake’s “Hotline Bling” and Frank Sinatra’s “My Way.” As you can see, from the range of genres they play, the team leaders want all participants to receive a well rounded musical experience. They are open to every musical genre, from contemporary hip-hop to 70s rock and roll. They love to play indie rock and art metal, described by Dave as, “thinking person’s heavy music,” a thought provoking genre that really gets you thinking about life. So, whether you like rock and roll, indie rock or hip-hop this is the place to be.

The house band has been a moving experience for the team members who have participated in jamming out every week. Seeing the joy it brings to the people they work with is eye opening and rewarding. The team members have noticed a new energy among the people of posAbilities brought forward by music. Being able to express themselves by singing and playing their favourite songs, has granted them the ability to feel like superstars. The band has already allowed both team members and persons served to gain new experiences and become more involved in the community. It has taught them more about music in a hands-on way.

“As team members it is encouraging to know we work with an organization that offers us the opportunity to use music as a helping and learning tool” – David and Seth

In the future, the band members would like to see more participation from persons served and other posAbilities team members. They hope to gain more exposure and a larger audience. One of their goals is to play at community events – they even want to start recording their own original songs. Let’s help make this happen by getting involved! Whether you are musically inclined or not, the posAbilities house band is a great learning opportunity. For anyone out there that wants to play music, the people that make up posAbilities are here to listen. Come jam out with the band (and no I don’t mean the kind of jam you spread on toast). However, snacks are welcome so be sure to drop by!

A huge thank you to Robert, Terry, our magnificent team members and participants for allowing this initiative to happen every week! It just wouldn’t be the same without you.

For more information about the band contact: Terry Eadie or Monique Nelson at 604-299-4001 OR email info@posAbilities

See you there!