Live music lifts spirits in times of darkness at CARTI

Local News

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — The soothing sounds of classical music are what you will hear the moment you step into CARTI Cancer Treatment Center’s front doors.

“As far as the music it’s beautiful,” says Columbia County Judge Larry Atkinson, who is also a patient at CARTI.

Columbia County Judge Larry Atkinson [Center] will end his term January 31, 2020.

Last week, Atkinson announced after 13 years in office, he will be retiring early from his elected position while he fights the most aggressive form of brain cancer.

“I got admitted to an emergency room and found out that I have GBM, which is Glioblastoma,” said Atkinson. “There is no cure for it.”

However, there is something helping Judge Atkinson – live music.

CARTI recently added live music to its lobby. They hope to show the healing power of music and the effects it can have on a person’s mind, body, and spirit.

“It makes you feel better. If that makes sense to you. Just the kind of music it is and how well it’s played,” Atkinson says.

It was an idea that was brought to the table by a local musician, David Glaze. Originally an idea only for the holiday season, but has had such a positive response they’ve added the musical repertoire permanently.

“A patient walked up to the piano and leaned over and she said thank you so much,” says Glaze. “This is so soothing and so healing.”

David Glaze, a local musician who leads the all-volunteer musical program, hopes music in the lobby will create a more cheerful experience for patients.

Columbia County Judge Larry Atkinson with wife and grandchild.

When every second counts, it’s sometimes the smallest keys on a panio that make the grandest of difference in people’s lives.

“It makes you relax and feel good and you just close your eyes and listen to the music. Don’t worry about what’s going on in the world, worry about what’s going on right then and there,” Atkinson says.

The CARTI center will now have live music every day from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. for their patients.

Local musicians are welcome to volunteer and they ask that you reach out to the center by emailing here ( kathy.friend@carti.com).

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