We’ve written about Patrick Costello before on Bluegrass Today. He has written several instructional books, and developed a system of braille tab for the visually impaired who wish to learn the banjo.
The man has spent most of his life helping others learn to play and appreciate the music of guitar and banjo. But apparently Patrick has suffered from some severe hearing loss for most of his life. He recently underwent an operation at John Hopkins to restore his hearing. He got what is called a
“Baha implant,” a hearing aid implanted into the skull, which transmits vibrations straight to the hearing nerve, skipping the ears altogether.
The Philadelphia City Paper has the details of Patrick’s story. It’s amazing to read of how he learned to play, not by hearing the instrument so much, but by feeling it vibrate.
You can read first hand accounts of Patrick’s experiences on his blog dailyfrail.com.
Here’s a youtube video of his experience having the Baha activated at John Hopkins. It’s over 30 minutes long, and it’s about 24 minutes into it when you’ll see him play his guitar and be able to actually hear it for the first time in many years.
Congratulations Patrick and we hope you enjoy hearing yourself play and much as we do!