Humans of the Music Industry


We love the idea of sharing real life stories and experiences to raise awareness of tinnitus and hearing loss in the music industry. The idea hit us one quiet afternoon when Humans of New York and an interview with Davey Lane collided in a browser! So we’re gathering stories from musicians, sound engineers, punters, indeed anyone working in and around the industry to help get the conversation about hearing health started, to drop the stigma and work towards making sure that everyone who loves music – can love it longer.

If you have a story to share, we’d love to hear from you too, please get in touch at: hearsmart at hearingcrc dot org

Ian

Classical musician, ex-sound engineer & audiologist.

 

I am a classical musician who has been living with tinnitus and hearing loss for nearly 30 years. It used to drive me nuts, but tinnitus and I have reached an understanding… The injuries were first sustained (I think) while at a night club in my late teens and then made worse by continued exposure to loud music through my instrument practice and work as a sound engineer. By the time I became aware I had a problem it was too late.Trying to find answers to the constant ringing in my right ear led me on to a whole lot of study and research, where I discovered that if I had been given a little more information on how to care for my hearing when I was younger I could still have great hearing today. These days I do a lot of talking to student musicians (and the older ones as well!) trying to make their options clear.

I also do a fair bit of counseling for those who are wrestling with tinnitus and hearing loss. I still play a lot of loud music on the French horn (my day job) and use electronic earplugs to protect my ears from further damage.Trying to find answers to the constant ringing in my right ear led me on to a whole lot of study and research, where I discovered that if I had been given a little more information on how to care for my hearing when I was younger I could still have.

Trying to find answers to the constant ringing in my right ear led me on to a whole lot of study and research, where I discovered that if I had been given a little more information on how to care for my hearing when I was younger I could still have great hearing today. These days I do a lot of talking to student musicians (and the older ones as well!) trying to make their options clear. I also do a fair bit of counseling for those who are wrestling with tinnitus and hearing loss. I still play a lot of loud music on the French horn (my day job) and use electronic earplugs to protect my ears from further damage.

 

Alex

Geologist and music enthusiast.

 

I’m a geologist and have to wear hearing protection as part of my work. Because plugs are part of my everyday kit, I found myself wearing them at gigs too. I actually get clearer sounds off the stage when I wear earplugs, especially with the sorts of music I like to go see live that has a lot of keyboards and synths; sounds that tend to get lost behind a wall of bass, guitar and drums. I usually carry a few spare sets of earplugs with me too, in case my mates want a pair!

As a part of my pre-employment medical screenings I have my hearing routinely tested and it’s above average for someone of my age – win! However, I have persistive tinnitus so I know that if I go to a gig and don’t wear any hearing protection, my ears will ring for days afterwards.

 

Phil

Project manager and music punter.

 

Fortunately for my ears, I’ve sporadically worn foam earplugs for many years. A lot of the music I listen to is electronic and is mastered so the bass dominates. On the dance floor, I tend to spend a lot of my time finding the ‘sweet spot’ where you can hear everything without it becoming overpowering or feeling uncomfortable. This is quite different to some band gigs, where I often end up sitting at the back of the room and find that the sound can still hurt.

I recently went to an audiologist because I had a faint and continuous high pitched tone in my left ear. I don’t have hearing loss but found out I had tinnitus caused by a stuck neurological signal. I now have professional musician earplugs that I wear mainly to concerts, I wouldn’t be without them now.