I sat with my resident as we sang Rum and Coca Cola, one of her favourite songs. It was a hit for the Andrews Sisters in 1945. My resident was 22 years old at the time. Now at 95, she is unable to articulate or remember the names of people or places. However, she remembers the lyrics to most of the Andrews sisters songs. Why is this? Songs that we hear as teenagers tend to remain lifelong favourites because they become hard wired into our memory during a critical time, known as the reminiscence bump. This is explained by what's called differential encoding, or an ability to store events better during early adulthood. You recall more memories from the period of 10 to 25, and the bump has a peak between 16 and 20. Music can tap deep emotional recall. Unlike speech and remembering faces and places, which are found in specific parts of the brain, music is stored all over the brain like confetti, keeping those specific memories distributed and saved well into our twilight years.
Find attached a selection of The Andrews Sisters sing along sheets and corresponding painting pages for: Bushel & a Peck, Hold tight, Run Rabbit and Rum & Coca Cola,