Meet Bill Westcott

Bill Westcott is a pianist, composer, arranger, musicologist, and music theorist. His specialty is in African American and Classical music of the 20th century. As a veteran musician Westcott is well aware as to the extent of just how powerful music can be to heal. With over 40 years of experience, Bill has played piano at Toronto General Hospital and offers many sounds to Music Can Heal’s diverse palette of music. He has performed as a band member in Dixieland, country and western, rock, ragtime, and jazz and blues bands. Westcott also has a love for the ukulele and has self-diagnosed himself with UAS (Ukulele Acquisition Syndrome). One of his more unique performances is with Brenna MacCrimm

How Music Saved Lia Grimanis’ Life

“I grew up pretty poor and have always loved music but my family could never really afford for me to have an instrument. When I ended up homeless I faced a point where I was going to kill myself. I decided I wanted to make my life beautiful and go for big, crazy dreams. After hearing Loreena McKennitt I wanted to play the harp,” Lia Grimanis, founder of Up With Women, recently shared with me. Considering Grimanis was a homeless teenager at the time, living on a dollar a day, to purchase a $30,000 instrument and enrol in music lessons was a big dream. She learned of a 25-string lap harp that was $1000 after speaking with composer and musician, Loreena McKennitt at Toronto’s Mariposa Folk Fest

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