Meet Travis Atz, Our Featured Volunteer from San Francisco!

Get to know our volunteers!

Do you volunteer at a specific hospital? I volunteer at San Francisco VA Hospital and UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital

How long have you been volunteering with Musicians On Call? A little under 2 years

Do you perform anywhere else besides with MOC? Local clubs, but my road days are behind me for now.

What is your favorite song to play for patients? Sittin on the Dock of the Bay

Have you ever been part of an impromptu jam session with patients or family in a hospital room? Absolutely! Love it when the patients and nurses sing. We’ve had a few impromptu dance parties, too, of bed-bound patients and their husbands or wives.

What is your occupation outside of MOC? I design acoustic instruments (guitars, mandolins, and so forth).

Do you have any hidden talents? With the right shoes, I’ve got a pretty winning record of limbo-ing.

What is your story? What connects you with music and why do you volunteer with MOC? While I love all forms of art, nothing makes me feel like a piece of music can make me feel. What an honor to share those moments with others and transport them to a different spot of the mind for a little bit.

What makes MOC different from your other volunteer experiences? The intimacy of the interactions with patients is pretty unique and can be really moving and special.

Has your life changed because of your experience with MOC? Yes, but really, the patients and their lives, even in the small time we have together, are of course the important ones.

What is your favorite #MOCmoment? Thankfully, there are so many to choose from! But the immediate one that comes to mind with this question is of a long-term patient, bedbound, non-verbal, and with nearly no movement, who is always lovingly attended to by his daughter. After playing what she told us was his favorite song, he spent over a minute and a lot of energy to give us his version of a “thumbs-up” – as his daughter’s eyes widened and teared up, she told us it was the most he had moved in over 3 months. That’s the power of music, for sure.

Do you want to help us deliver the healing power of music? Apply to volunteer as a guide or a musician today!