Meet Ryan Leo, Our Featured Volunteer from Miami and Washington, DC!
Get to know our volunteers!
Do you volunteer at a specific hospital? I volunteer at South Miami and Virginia Hospital Center
How long have you been volunteering with Musicians On Call? I have been volunteering for six years!
Are you a volunteer guide or musician? Musician
What is your favorite song to play for patients? One of my good feeling, go-to songs is “I’m Yours” by Jason Mraz; however, I always try to pick a song last minute as I enter a room based on the reading I get from the patient and it’s amazing how many times I just so happened to pick a song that really connects with them. In that moment, that’s my favorite song to play for a patient.
Have you ever been part of an impromptu jam session with patients or family in a hospital room? Yes, absolutely! Whether it’s singing, clapping, dancing, banging on a tambourine, there have been a few visits that included a jam session!
Do you perform anywhere else besides with MOC? Yes, I perform solo, as a duo, and also with my full band called Make More Animals in the Washington DC area. I’ve also been connected with LiveNation the past several years and have played the VIP Club area pre-show as the “opening” act for Florida Georgia Line, Dave Matthews Band, Beck, and more at Jiffy Lube Live in VA and Coral Sky Amphitheatre in FL.
What is your occupation outside of MOC? I do Aerospace Engineering
Do you have any hidden talents? The folks at my day job would say that playing music is my hidden talent and you already know that, but I do also have my pilot’s license!
What is your story? What connects you with music and why do you volunteer with MOC? Several years ago, I wanted to, and did, audition for The Voice; however, I had never actually seen the show, so decided to watch it for “research”. During the first episode I watched, they were interviewing one of the contestants and he was a volunteer for Musicians On Call, which I thought sounded amazing! I looked up the organization and they were still forming in the DC area, so I applied immediately to be a volunteer. Music has always been a huge part of my life since I was younger and to be able to give back through music, through something I love to do, is an amazing and rewarding opportunity.
What makes MOC different from your other volunteer experiences? One of the huge differences and things I love about MOC is that each volunteer experience is personal, each volunteer experience is unique, and each volunteer experience directly impacts the people we are trying to reach, since I’m literally standing there, LIVE, in their hospital room.
What is your favorite #MOCmoment? This is actually the hardest to answer because like I said, each visit is a unique and different experience. While not an actual #MOCmoment, one of my favorite MOC moments has been turning on my cell phone after work and having a voicemail from Pete Griffin thanking me for my support and time. This simple phone call actual means a lot and demonstrates what kind of leader Pete is and what an amazing organization Musicians On Call is as well.