Our wonderful clients inspire us everyday. Although we need to protect their identity, here are some of the great things they’ve said about us.


A soulful and intimate musician, Marlys is able to reach clients through music and help them progress in their goals. Beyond this, her MFT background gives her an added depth in verbal processing. The 12-Step-based music therapy program that she has developed for addiction recovery is a unique and effective integration of approaches and modalities that supports and engages clients in the understanding of their treatment. During my time with her, I feel that both I and her clients were in very good hands, and highly recommend her as both a supervisor and a clinician.  ~Practicum Student 

Wow! That felt great! It felt so amazing to let out all the pain and chaos that has been going on in my head for the last 5 or 6 years. I’ve kept it in for so long. I just got to leave all that anger on the drum.  Thank you! ~Client in Outpatient Treatment center for Substance Abuse (Statement made by client after Active Music Making session)

“This group taught me how to follow directions and to take a look at my emotions. Music is life for me. My first day here we did the drums and I was like “Oh! No!” but now, here I am still participating in drums. This group definitely got me out of my comfort zone.” – Extended Care treatment facility in Orange, Ca

“Music is such a good coping skill. It evokes such pure emotions. Even if you aren’t a musician, just listening to a song can help you.” Client in outpatient facility

Shadowing Marlys and watching music therapy be used in a substance abuse treatment center has been amazing. I’ve seen music therapy be an equalizing force, as it takes the experiences clients from completely different backgrounds and walks of life and helps them connect and identify with one another. But even more importantly, I’ve seen music therapy help clients connect with themselves and their own emotions, some of which they did not even realize they had. It’s a gateway for people to begin processing and understanding things on a deeper level. ~Practicum Student

Music and lyrics touch your emotions more than asking about it. I really appreciate your groups and feel something every group. – Orange extended care treatment.

“Wow! Thank you. That session was the best so far. Music really hits me and I feel inspired now to complete my 12 step work.” ~ Client in Inpatient Treatment Center

“Writing my song down kind of made my addiction final. It felt good to say it out loud.” – Residential Adolescent Facility

“I’ve always liked your groups because it really makes us think more than other groups.” – Long Beach Residential Treatment Facility

I like your groups because it allows us the opportunity to explore the steps. Unlike in the house, it has to be exact and you can be on a robot to do the steps but in your group I can actually explore the steps and what I think and feel about them. There is no right answer. I have to actually think about it. – Long Beach, CA Residential facility
I realize in this group that artists are the same as us. People are the same. We are unique but not alone in our suffering. – Orange, CA Extended Care Facility

“This was amazing. It reminded me of home and really helped me to calm down. The music took my emotions to excitement to calm and I also felt a release.” – Client in Detox in Orange County

Marlys Woods is an incredibly generous and thoughtful supervisor. During my music therapy practicum with her, she was welcoming and supportive, while also making sure that I was challenged and progressing in my acquisition of the necessary clinical skills appropriate to my training and personal comfort level. She offered ample opportunities for independent session planning, leading, and documentation, and provided thorough feedback throughout the process, from the development of therapeutic applications to the evaluation of client response. Her detailed observation and analysis of my work and her easy willingness to devote time and careful attention to my training was invaluable to my growth in the competencies of music therapy. ~Practicum Student