“Her songs bring you right into the emotions of a story…finessing the emotional
current into a political charge.”
 -East Bay Express, Berkeley

Betsy Rose

Betsy Rose is a singer, songwriter and community activist whose insight, warmth, humor, wit and wisdom have added a wealth of songs to the world of folk and progressive music for over forty years.

The songs of the Civil Rights movement, the hymns in her minister father’s church, classical musical training, and the songwriters of the burgeoning folk movement of the 60’s provided rich soil and deep roots for Rose’s emerging gifts as a songwriter and singer. Her songs are an artful blend of beautifully crafted lyrics and music, with messages that inspire listeners to greater faith in the human capacity to create “a world of peace, of promise and of grace” (from Real To Me)

Rose was a pioneering voice in the Women’s Cultural Movement of the 70’s and 80’s, singing at national and international festivals, touring the United States and Canada. Artists such as Pete Seeger, Ronnie Gilbert, and Bobbi McFerron have sung and/or recorded her songs, as have numerous Women’s and Peace Choruses throughout the country. Contemporary cultural visionaries such as Thich Nhat Hanh, Matthew Fox, and Joanna Macy have included her music in their work.

Betsy has performed and taught widely throughout the United States and Canada, India, Australia and the Czech Republic.  She has sung at festivals, and at conferences for spiritual organizations, activists, educators, and parents, including the California Early Childhood Educators, La Leche League, Association of Humanistic Psychology, Mindful Schools, Omega Institute, and AIDS and Hospice services.

The events during and after 9/11 inspired Rose to form the Bay Area Singing for Peace project–groups of non professional singers gathering in public sites (BART stations, Farmer’s Markets, etc) to sing songs of healing and peace. She also leads Womansong Circles, participatory singing events for women, in the Bay Area (CA) and nationally. She is active with Occupella, a five woman singing group that leads community singing at demonstrations, vigils, and marches in the Bay Area.

Her work with children and families includes serving as Music Specialist at Cornell School in Albany, CA, and training teachers in using music to teach conflict resolution, diversity awareness and social skills to young children. Betsy is also active in the Mindful Schools movement, bringing songs to in-school programs teaching Mindfulness Practice to students and teachers. She is a frequent guest leader in the family practice program of Spirit Rock (Buddhist) Meditation Center in Woodacre, CA.

Rose’s numerous recordings include Motherlight, songs from the journey of parenting, and Heart of a Child, inspirational songs for educators and parents. In My Two Hands is music inspired by the teachings and poetry of Thich Nhat Hanh. In 2006, Betsy released Welcome To The Circle, a selection of songs from her monthly Womansong Circles, sung by Betsy and a chorus of women’s voices. Calm Down Boogie, songs for children and families, celebrates the joys of simple living, homespun happiness, earth care and family bonds. Real To Me, is a stirring and beautifully crafted collection of songs for our times- songs of hope and faith, humor in the face of the rigors of child raising, inner healing, and global family connections. Her latest recording, Long For This World,  is a poetic and personal musical reflection on the losses and gifts of aging and end-of-life

Betsy Rose has a 27 year old son, Matthew, who is an organic/regenerative agriculture farmer.  She lives in Berkeley California with her partner David Stark.

Download Real To Me CD one sheeter.

Endorsements of Betsy’s programs and recordings
for children, parents and educators

From Colleagues:

“Calm Down Boogie is brilliant. Betsy Rose’s music is a rare combination: fun, catchy and profound. The perfect way to teach children the values of kindness, presence and finding your center. Highly recommended!
-James Baraz, Author of Awakening Joy

“The music that Betsy Rose offers at my Mindfulness in Education conferences is an inspiration. Offering simple, yet profoundly deep lyrics and tunes, she gives children the lessons on awareness, emotional intelligence, and compassion that many teachers strive in vain to impart.”
-Daniel Rechtschaffen, Omega Institute, Mindful Children

When I first heard Betsy sing, I was frankly bowled over by the her combination of lovely voice, super melody and lyrics, and sheer good-humored good-heartedness. Years later, having also had the privilege of teaching with her, I continue to feel that she is unique and precious contribution to families, anyone who loves music, and – yep, pun intended – world harmony.
-Rick Hanson, Ph.D., author of Buddha’s Brain: The Practical Neuroscience of Happiness, Love, and Wisdom

“Over the years in various settings I have really appreciated Betsy’s ability to offer high quality teaching in a light hearted way. Her songs can drop people out of their heads and back into their bodies and hearts.”
 -Amy Saltzman, M.D., A Still Quiet Place

If you want someone to bring heart, depth, laughter and tears of inspiration to your program, contact Betsy Rose as your keynote speaker or workshop leader. I highly recommend Betsy.
-Margie Carter, Early Childhood Instructor, Author and Consultant

Your visit to our elementary school was such a highlight for me, our students and staff. The information about the brain freeze under stress really told it in a way all children could relate to. And, your knowledge of the different developmental ages was evident …It make me feel peaceful just knowing that you are sharing the messages of peace, happiness and love to our children.
-Greta McCue, Guidance Counselor, Mashpee Elementary School,  MA

Betsy is one of those people whose presence makes each meeting with her memorable.  Her sense of humor and of pathos, her gift of self-revelation, and her clear commitment to personal, familial, social, environmental, and spiritual action all honor the meeting place of sacred and profane.
-Anne Maiden Brown, Ph.D., The Tibetan Art of Parenting

Not only entertaining and informative, but truly helpful, real tools for parents to use to nurture peace.  We all agree with another participant who wrote, “Betsy Rose is AWESOME!!
-La Leche League Northern Cal/HI, Conference Team

From Participants:

Inspirational – food for the soul.  She’s remarkable! Betsy almost had me in tears. I really connected with my heart.

Betsy Rose sings songs that always make me feel happy.
-Lilia, Grade 3

This workshop made me remember why I am a teacher.
-Early Childhood Educator

Betsy Rose is gifted as a presenter, singer and love-centered personality. She made the whole conference for my friend and me.”
-Early Childhood Education Conference Participant

My 3.5 year old daughter and I absolutely love your music!  You have provided us with countless hours of singing, both in the car and at home.  She is now totally fascinated by the concept of equanimity and she often asks me to give her examples of difficult situation that pertain to her life at home and at preschool, and then she tells me what response would show equanimity!

A 4th grade class along with a kindergarten class taught your songs to the whole school for our monthly Responsive Classroom assembly.  Now all the classrooms are using your CD.  They are using “My Mind Is A Clear Blue Sky” for their quiet time reflection in journal writing and/or after recess.
-Educator,  South Burlington VT

Thank you for being the artistic center of this project, the torch, the bringer!  Excellent work with the kids, a fabulous experience and a great product!
-Performing Arts Specialist,  John Gill Elementary School

You are an inspiration to so many!… Listening to other’s experiences, such as your own, inspires me to be an exceptional mother and teacher.
-Special Education Teacher-in-Training

“I can’t tell you how much I have gotten from Betsy Rose’s song “I Am Breathing”. What wonderful idea to have a song with breathing built right into it.
-Program Participant

Wonderful workshop!!  I didn’t want to leave!!