By Ed Karvoski Jr., Contributing Writer
Westborough – “Peeps Musical Hour” features highlights of a program that Luanne Crosby of Westborough has performed nearly weekly since 2012 for residents at Beaumont Rehabilitation and Skilled Nursing Center at Northborough.
In response to the current pandemic restrictions, Westborough TV offered to record Crosby’s performance to share remotely via cable television and online. Among the venues broadcasting the show is Northborough’s Beaumont for the residents who are accustomed to Crosby’s visits.
“I wanted to do this show, not only to entertain the residents and make them happy for an hour, but also so they would know that I haven’t forgotten them,” she explained.
Her performing career began as a solo folk singer for over 20 years, followed by three decades singing with jazz and rock bands. She downsized her act in 2008. In “Peeps Musical Hour,” Crosby accompanies herself on the ukulele.
“The older you get, the smaller you want your equipment to be,” she quipped.
Crosby first brought her ukulele to Beaumont while visiting her mother, Liz, in 2012. Her mother lived at Beaumont for several months after suffering a stroke and developing memory loss. Yet, she remembered the lyrics of songs that her daughter sang.
“Music touches another part of the brain,” Crosby noted. “I played all the ‘60s songs that my mother loved. She sang along or at least mouthed the words. She told me, ‘I love it when you play these songs. It makes me feel like I still have a brain in there.’”
Her mother passed away October 17, 2012. Since then, Crosby has performed nearly every Sunday afternoon at Beaumont up until the current pandemic restrictions.
“Peeps Musical Hour” includes a repertoire of songs that Crosby accumulated over several years of taking requests from the Beaumont residents.
“The songs that I do now are from the late-1800s to mid-1970s,” she relayed. “They’re songs that the residents’ parents’ loved. The residents grew up hearing these songs.”
While Cosby has performed various musical styles at countless venues as a singer, musician and songwriter throughout several decades, she cherishes her gigs in recent years with audiences consisting of mostly seniors.
“It’s been a great evolution,” she said of her varied career. “I don’t play at bars or perform concerts for thousands of people anymore. I now play my ukulele for people sitting in wheelchairs in the hall at Beaumont – and it’s equally rewarding in a different way. As soon as I’m able to go to Beaumont again, I think that I’ll want to get in my car and go back there. I love to entertain – it revives me.”
Crosby is arranging to also broadcast the show at other facilities of SALMON Health and Retirement where she has performed. Additionally, she has entertained people with memory changes and their caregivers at memory cafes that take place at libraries and other locations.
“Peeps Musical Hour” can be viewed anytime on YouTube and at westboroughtv.org. In Westborough, the show is currently airing daily at noon in April on Westborough TV, Verizon Fios channel 24 and Charter Spectrum channel 191.