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Mike Barnett Recovery Fund

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If you’re reading this, you likely know that Mike Barnett is one of the premier fiddle players of his generation. From his work touring with bluegrass legend Ricky Skaggs, to his Grammy-nominated solo endeavors, Mike has wowed audiences for years with his virtuosic and creative approach to the fiddle. Now, he needs our help.

On Saturday, July 25th, Mike suffered a cerebral hemorrhage while at home in Nashville. Mike’s wife Annalise was with him at the time, and quickly got him to the TriStar Skyline hospital, where he underwent emergency surgery to remove the massive clot in his brain. The surgeons determined that he bled from an “arteriovenous malformation,” which he was likely born with. After several days in the Neuro Intensive Care Unit at Skyline, Annalise and his family decided to transfer him to Vanderbilt University Medical Center, where he underwent a second surgery to repair the AVM and reduce brain swelling, on Aug 1st. Much to the relief of his family and friends, the surgeons reported the surgery a great success. He spent another week or so in the ICU, and was released to a general hospital bed on Aug 8th, where he has since been gaining strength and making amazing strides towards regaining consciousness and motor functions on his left side. Thus ends “the thriller,” as Annalise has dubbed it, and so begins “the marathon.”

Mike is going to need extensive therapy going forward. Although he shows many remarkable signs of progress, he remains unable to fully express himself in speech or written language, and has very limited mobility on the left side of his body. Everyone in Mike’s life wants him to get the best therapy possible, to maximize the likelihood that Mike could regain some quality of life, and possibly even play fiddle again. His family has painstakingly considered many options, in order to choose the rehab center most suited to his needs.

Annalise and Mike’s parents have determined that his best bet is the Shepherd Center in Atlanta. Shepherd is consistently ranked one of the best in the country, and luckily enough, they have a room opening up this week. As an inpatient, Mike will receive 3-5 hours of rehab every day, which will include speech, physical, and occupational therapy. His stay will be at least 6 weeks, possibly longer. Annalise will be able to stay there with him, a huge benefit of Shepherd (many other rehab facilities aren’t even allowing visitors due to Covid), and she’ll receive emotional support in the form of therapy groups for spouses/family.

As I’m sure you can imagine, Shepherd isn’t cheap. The cost of his stay will exceed both what is covered by insurance and the financial resources available to him. It is with the utmost humility and gratitude that his loved ones ask for your help. These funds will allow for Mike to get the absolute best care at this crucial time, and will go a long way to alleviate the financial burdens Annalise will face in adjusting to a new city and a new reality. With your help, it is possible to imagine a bright future for Mike and Annalise; one of good health and free of substantial medical debt.

His friends and family are exceptionally grateful for the outpouring of love and support Mike has received thus far. If you can, please consider a donation to aid in the recovery of everyone’s favorite guy and truly brilliant musician, Mike Barnett.


  • Paul Lindenauer
    • $100 
    • 4 mos
  • Anonymous
    • $50 
    • 5 mos
  • Marcia Dworkind
    • $50 
    • 1 yr
  • Anonymous
    • $100 
    • 1 yr
  • Edward Harwitz
    • $50 
    • 1 yr

Organizer and beneficiary

Jeff Picker
Nashville, TN
Annalise Ohse

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