I admire that you took on this hospital gig. Lately I see folks use the word “privilege” in regard to linguistic bias. A study about chess “privileges” attack and risk-taking over sound positional play, for example. A recent article in a magazine talks about how schools now “privilege’ math and science.
I think lately about a different set of privileges than the ones in those examples. I think how we ‘privilege’ the concert experience and the paying customer. This is natural, as money is a reasonable basis of valuation in a culture which ascribes material goods to those who can generate money.
Yet there is something important, I think, in sharing music outside this “money” thing. I think you’ve hit on part of that importance here, with this volunteer work.
My goal is to play well for people who dig it. If that comes off I’ll walk away with a happy buzz. Performing in private spaces like a hospital room works great.
I remember singing a sad hymn with a friend whose dad had just died. There were four or five of us sitting around at his house. It was just the right music and the right thing to do.
I know these two examples sound a little ghoulish.