Michael Claytor, Arts in Medicine Practitioner


Michael Claytor joined the Arts in Medicine team in the fall of 2013 after having volunteered with the program and participating in the Center for Arts in Medicine’s Summer Intensive course. He has been playing and singing original and cover songs since 2005, and is happy to call Gainesville, FL home. Specializing in fingerstyle guitar and bluegrass banjo, he has recorded several albums with various bands and toured around the country and beyond. As a musician with the program, Michael works primarily at patients’ bedsides, singing songs and hoping to spread the healing joy of music to those who need it.

Why Arts in Medicine?

“I truly believe in the healing power of music. Songwriting is the way I overcome emotional hurdles. If I’m struggling with something, I write a song about it. The act of crafting a melody and fixing relevant lyrics to it is very therapeutic.

Beyond the healing effects of songwriting on me personally, it is amazing to see how beneficial music can be in a hospital setting. I volunteered with other musicians at the hospital and was immediately moved by the power that music can have to transport patients out of their hospital beds. Aside from their appreciation and, often, the surprise of a live performance in their hospital room, the music truly seems to bring them to a happier, brighter place.”