Drop-In Session Guest, Marie Schumacher, has self-imposed a challenge of video-recording one song a week for one year: The 52 Songs Project. She was inspired by a mutual friend of ours, Zack Orr, who has taken it quite a step further and is doing 365 Days of Song, one song every day for a year! Throughout each week, Schumacher looks forward to “selecting and refining a song that fits well with each particular week… and it has been a positive practice for me on many levels.”  She shared the first song she video-recorded for this project with us live in-studio, Jaded.

In addition to her 52 Songs Project, Marie is also the head of PDX Vox, a community singing program focusing primarily on a cappella group singing, which has grown from the first group to five unique groups over the past eleven years. The instructors customize arrangements of rock songs for only vocal parts, usually 4-part harmonies, but up to 7! It’s a non-audition recreational program with meeting locations all over Portland. Marie says,” A cappella groups operate like rock bands — they’re very creative, democratic, and interactive — they are great musical forms for people like me who want to sing songs from the radio.” This is a great way for adults who miss singing in choir throughout school-life to get back into raising their voice again with others.

Marie’s experience with PDX Vox, has taken a turn toward Music in Medicine, bringing music therapy and environmental music into the neonatal intensive care unit. “Using music as an ingredient of healthcare is still a new field and we feel like we’re on the frontier of something transforming.” If you’d like to learn more or are a musician interested in applying for this program, visit PDXvox.com and message Marie through the website.

Here’s our interview.