The rhythm instruments were out and faces were smiling at Side by Side Singing yesterday at the Biltmore United Methodist Church in Asheville. Sessions are on Wednesdays, at 1:30, and continue through Wednesday August 26th. If you haven’t already sung with us and you are curious about it — here’s video we posted on YouTube that shows some clips of sessions. OR, better yet, why not join us next Wednesday!

All sessions are free. You need not be an experienced singer to fully participate!

Side by Side SUMMER Singing

Fifty singers took a “Sentimental Journey” through song at Biltmore United Methodist Church’s Community Events Center on July 15. We sang “This Land is Your Land,” “America the Beautiful,” “Take Me Out to the Ballgame,” and “This Little Light of Mine” with great gusto!!!! One hour goes by so quickly when you are enjoying yourself so much doing one of your favorite things!

As always we sang “Side by Side” and concluded with “Happy Trails.” Jan Mallindine played the guitar. Ruthie Rosauer and Debbie Nordeen switched off on the piano. We continue for six more weeks at 376 Hendersonville Rd. in Asheville, NC (July 22, 29, August 5, 12, 19, and 26). We start at 1:30pm, sing for an hour, and then break for light refreshments. All sessions are free! [For more detailed information on how to find our location see the tab “how to find us.”] We hope you will join us!

Debbie Nordeen (left) and Ruthie Rosauer as song leaders.

Debbie Nordeen (left) and Ruthie Rosauer as song leaders.

Jan Mallindine on the guitar.

Jan Mallindine on the guitar.

Beth Mallindine

Beth Mallindine as one of our friendly Greeters

Side by Side SUMMER Series to Start July 15, 2015

We are delighted to say that Side by Side Singing for the SUMMER will be at Biltmore United Methodist Church in Asheville. Debbie Nordeen and Ruthie Rosauer will be song leaders. We hope YOU will be joining us!

WHEN:  Wednesdays at 1:30pm beginning July 15 and for consecutive Wednesdays through and including August 26. Sessions begin with an hour of singing and end with light refreshments and social time.

WHERE: Biltmore United Methodist Church — in their “treehouse” formally known as the Community Event Center. The Community Event Center is the newer light brown building on the top of their hill (across their driveway from the older brick building containing the sanctuary).  Street address: 376 Hendersonville Rd. Asheville, NC.

COST: All Side by Side sessions are FREE!

Biltmore United Methodist Church on Highway 25 in Ashville

Biltmore United Methodist Church on Highway 25 in Ashville

Side by Side Singing in Fletcher Off to a Great Start!

Birds were not the only ones singing on Friday, April 10 in Fletcher. Over 60 Side by Side Singers gave rousing renditions of songs such as: Take Me Out to the Ballgame, Oh What  Beautiful Morning, Do-Re-Me, This Land is Your Land and Sentimental Journey. Our host, Calvary Episcopal Church, provided refreshments for our socializing afterwards.

We will be singing again each Friday afternoon, from 2 – 3 pm, through and including Friday May 15. As always these sessions are FREE. You do not need to be an experienced singer or able to read music to fully participate.

WHERE: Calvary Episcopal Church on Hendersonville Highway (also known at Highway 25) and Old Airport Road in Fletcher. We sing in the Parish Hall. Ample parking in two lots — one in front of the Parish Hall (this entrance is handicap accessible) and the other behind the Parish Hall.

Ruthie Rosauer on the piano, Debbie Nordeen leading a song at Calvary Episcopal Church in Fletcher.

Ruthie Rosauer on the piano, Debbie Nordeen leading a song at Calvary Episcopal Church in Fletcher.



Birds sing in the Spring — so why shouldn’t we sing as well? Come join us in SIDE BY SIDE SINGING this Spring at Calvary Episcopal Church in Fletcher, NC. We start Friday, April 10, 2015 at 2pm and run for six consecutive Fridays through May 15. Thank you to our HOST for this series — Calvary Episcopal Church.

LOCATION: Calvary Episcopal Church, Parish Hall, 2830 Hendersonville Rd. Fletcher, NC
PARKING: From Old Airport Road turn into church parking lot. One lot is in front of the Parish Hall — this lot has handicap accessible entrance. Additional parking behing Parish Hall.
WHEN: Friday afternoons at 2pm starting April 10 through May 15, 2015. One hour of singing will be followed by light refreshments.
WHO: Facilitators are Debbie Nordeen and Ruthie Rosauer. Singing sessions are FREE and open to the public. You need not be an experienced singer to attend.

Side by Side Video now on YouTube

There is now a video about Side by Side Singing! It is just under nine minutes long. It includes clips of us singing during sessions — you’ll hear parts of “Somewhere Over the Rainbow,” “Side by Side,” “Happy Trails,” “This Little Light of Mine,” and others. We are a lively and enthusiastic group of singers!!!!

The video also includes Debbie and Ruthie talking about Side by Side and some of the health benefits of singing. We couldn’t list ALL the health benefits of singing or it would have been waaaaay too long.

We look forward to Side by Side for the Holidays on December 10 and 17 at 1:30 at the Carillon in Hendersonville. But until we meet again we hope you will enjoy watching the video. Here’s the link:

Tips for Creating Singing Experiences at Home

Ruthie and Debbie presented information about Side by Side Singing at the Alzheimer’s Caregiver’s conference in Arden, North

Ruthie Rosauer (left) and Debbie Nordeen, facilitators of Side by Side

Ruthie Rosauer (left) and Debbie Nordeen, facilitators of Side by Side

Carolina on October 23, 2014. We told them how good singing was for healthy aging and gave them a taste of a Side by Side sessions. But recognizing that there isn’t always a Side by Side Singing session handy, we also prepared a hand-out with ideas for incorporating music into your everyday life — especially helpful for those who have cognitive disorders.

Here are the suggestions:

1) Play CDs of your loved one’s favorite songs by favorite artists so she/he can join in singing.

2) Create a lyrics notebook of favorite songs by downloading free lyrics.

3) Install free pandora internet radio on your computer or roku tv device. Pandora offers hundreds of choices.

4) Sing along with YouTube videos by searching favorite artists or old shows such as the Lawrence Welk or Andy Williams show. You can also search for specific songs.

5) Buy the singer’s editions of Volumes 1 and 2 of “Get America Singing Again” by Hal Leonard. The singer’s edition small books are only $4 each on Amazon. If you are over 50 years old and grew up in the USA chances are good that you will know all the songs. Songs include favorites such as: I’ve Been Working on the Railroad and Oh! What A Beautiful Morning. (This is not an ad! We just love these books.)

6) If your loved one played an instrument in younger years, get it out, dust it off and encourage him or her to play it again.

7) Play the “Lyrics Relay Game.” It goes like this, you sing “Oh we ain’t got a barrel of — ” and pause for the other person to fill in the missing word. He will sing, “Money, maybe we’re —-” then YOU to fill in a word and keep singing. Keep tossing the song back and forth like a football.

8) Whistle while you work (or hum if you can’t whistle).

9) Dance together to favorite music.

10) Play the “Opera Game.” Instead of speaking to each other SING to each other in wildly dramatic ways as if you were in an opera. “What are we having for SUPPER TONIGHT???” “We are having (dramatic pause) macaroni, macaroni, roni, ro-NIIIIII” You get the idea!

11) Buy an iPod and install your loved one’s favorite music.

Instruments in the Side by Side Mix

Those of you who have attended Side by Side Singing will remember the glee with which we play rhythm instruments of all DSC02210sorts, especially the tamborines. ¬†We really get going on “This Little Light of Mine.” Jan Mallindine has accompanied us on the guitar many times on that song. We’ve also really enjoyed Jan playing favorites such as “This Land is My Land,” “Let Me Call You Sweetheart” and “When the Saints Go Marching In.”

Debbie Nordeen and Ruthie Rosauer trade off on the piano. We’ve had drums from time to time — most memorably on “The Lion Sleeps Tonight.” The last two Side By Side sessions in the Hendersonville location found Ruthie on the clarinet for Yo Lisa Goy (aka The Vine and Fig Tree), I’ve Been Working on the Railroad, Those Were the Days (which we have re-written slightly to be THESE Are the Days), and the Hebrew round Shalom Chevarim. We also added a new song to our repertoire from Fiddler on the Roof — “Sunrise, Sunset.” The clarinet can embellish the melody line — or help carry the melody to free up singers to explore possible harmony lines to add to the joyful sound we make together.

Ruthie Rosauer on clarinet (on left) and Debbie Nordeen on piano for group singing Sunrise, Sunset.

Ruthie Rosauer plays clarinet (on left) and Debbie Nordeen on piano for group singing of Sunrise, Sunset.

SIDE BY SIDE April – May 2014

We just finished six weeks of Side by Side SInging at the Sherill Center (University of North Carolina Asheville) under the sponsorship of the North Carolina Center for Health and Wellness. There were over 40 participants at our last session. We were joined by Jan and Beth Mallandine who led us in “This Little Light of Mine.” And four sopranos from Womansong helped us sing a new favorite composed by Lytingale Henrickson, “I Will Carry You.” We have a short video of this song and hope to be able to figure out how to post it soon. Oh the new technology has a very steep learning curve!

Debbie Nordeen and  Ruthie Rosauer switched off between playing the piano and leading the songs. In addition to our signature songs of “Side by Side” and “Happy Trails” we also sang “Those Were The Days,” “Swing Low,” “Always,” “Oh What A Beautiful Morning,” “What A Wonderful World” and a few others. We rocked out to the round “I Love the Mountains.” This round is particularly dear to our hearts as we could see the beautiful Appalachian Mountains outside our window as we sang. 

Below is a photo of Debbie and Ruthie leading the group in singing. Ruthie with tambourine.



This is a photo of some of the singers with Debbie. 


Debbie conducting a Side by Side Session

Debbie conducting a Side by Side Session