Jay Allen to perform at Alzheimer’s Association conference in Albuquerque

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — After losing his mother to Alzheimer’s, Jay Allen is using his love for music to advocate for the Alzheimer’s Association.

“It took her life in two years and nine months from the moment she was diagnosed to the moment she passed away,” Allen said.

At the age of 51, his mother was diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer’s.

“People that have Alzheimer’s, they lose their entire memory, and she lost the memory of me as her son,” Allen said. “She walked in the door and saw right through me. She didn’t know who I was.”

Allen said he knew about the power of music, but didn’t experience it until he took his mom to a venue.

“I knew, in that moment, something was happening,” he said. “The music impacted her because she took a deep heavy breath and she leaned in and she just whispered in my ear, “I love you, Jay, I miss you, son, it’s soo good to be here.’ For moments to come, I had my momma back.”

He said that moment inspired his song “Blank Stares.” A video of him singing the song with his mother on stage went viral.

“I am very proud to say that I have helped raise about $100 million to help fight against Alzheimer’s,” Allen said.

He will be performing at a caregiver conference this weekend with the New Mexico Alzheimer’s Association.

The conference will be held Saturday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Uptown Marriott. Admission is free.