I met Ben Rivers in 2011. Though only 41 years old, he had Parkinson’s disease for 10 years. At that point in time, most any kind of movement was hard.
An estimated 50,000 to 60,000 Americans a year are diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. It is a condition which can be a greatly debilitating. Neurons in the brain gradually die off, taking with them a brain chemical called dopamine that’s critical for movement.
Listen anytime this week via KALW's Local Music Player. Folk Music & Beyond's special guest is John Cruz, award-winning singer-songwriter from Hawaii. John is a guitarist, story-teller, and teacher and serves as cultural ambassador for Hawaii. He was chosen to play at President Obama's inauguration. John will perform a few songs and tell lots of stories. We'll hear songs from his recent recordings "Acoustic Soul" and "One Of These Days."