Singing and Stuttering (386)

Why Does Singing Significantly Reduce Stuttering?

Dr. E. Charles Healey, singing and stuttering
Dr. E. Charles Healey

Dr. E. Charles Healey, Ph.D., CCC-SLP, BRS-FD and Rachel Shill join Peter Reitzes to discuss singing and stuttering and why stuttering is often significantly reduced when singing.

First, Rachel Shill talks about being a songwriter who stutters and how singing has given her a “voice she can rely on.” Rachel sings two songs live on today’s episode.

Then Dr. Healey joins the conversation and is asked about a wide range of topics pertaining to singing and stuttering. Dr. Healey discusses research pertaining to singing and stuttering, treatment implications and other fluency enhancing conditions such as speaking to animals or when alone. Peter wonders if there are any similarities between fluency shaping and singing. Dr. Healey is asked about numerous comments left at the StutterTalk Facebook group in anticipation of today’s episode.

Rachel Shill, singing and stuttering
Rachel Shill

E. CHARLES HEALEY is a professor of speech-language pathology at the University of Nebraska for the past 36 years, a fellow of the American Speech-Language Hearing Association, a Board Recognized Fluency Specialist and an Associate Editor for the Journal of Fluency Disorders. Dr. Healey co-developed the well known CALMS Model of stuttering (Cognitive, Affective, Linguistic, Motor and Social). Dr. Healey published, in cooperation with his university, the CALMS Assessment for school age children who stutter.

RACHEL SHILL is a person who stutters, a 32 year old professional chef and a musician from the south west of England. Her spare time is spent writing music, helping out at her local recording studio and blogging at Thoughts From a Closed Mind.

PETER REITZES is a person who stutters and a speech-language pathologist.

Related Episodes featuring Singers Who Stutter

Some references from today’s episode

Stuttering Foundation press release Singing and Stuttering: What We Know.

Healey, E.C., Mallard, III, A.R., & Adams, M.R. (1976). Factors contributing to the reduction of stuttering during singing. Journal of Speech and Hearing Research, 19, 475-480.

Packman, A., & Onslow, M. (1999). Stuttering and disfluent wind instrument playing. Journal of Fluency Disorders, 24, 293-298.

Soo-Eun, C. (2011). Using Brain Imaging to Unravel the Mysteries of Stuttering. The Dana Foundation. 

Wan CY, Uber TR, Hohmann A, Schlaug G. The Therapeutic Effects of Singing in Neurological Disorders. Music Percept. 2010