Australian music legend Glenn Wheatley is “thoroughly enjoying life” thanks to new hearing aids
Glenn Wheatley’s name has been synonymous with the Australian entertainment industry for the past 40 years. From forming and managing the Little River Band to producing the two highest-selling Australian albums of all time (John Farnham’s Whispering Jack and Delta Goodrem’s Innocent Eyes), Glenn’s passion and talent has painted a musical landscape in Australia which transcends generations.
Like many in the entertainment industry however, Glenn’s success has been accompanied by challenges including tinnitus and hearing loss, which Glenn puts down to his exposure to live, loud music over extended periods. Diagnosed with tinnitus (perceived sound or ringing in the ears) in London during his bass-playing days with Master’s Apprentices, he was told to “get used to it” as there was no cure. It wasn’t until Glenn was diagnosed with hearing loss 10 years ago, that he purchased his first hearing aids and has relied on them since, with varying levels of satisfaction.
Around five years ago, Glenn started seeing Dr. Moh Dadafarin and his audiology team at Ear and Hearing; and has remained loyal thanks to Moh’s meticulous approach to managing his hearing. “Moh is a genius,” Glenn explains. “He’s done a marvellous job – he’s as good as they get.” Moh’s long-term understanding of Glenn’s hearing needs is also an important factor. “I can’t imagine wanting to start again with anyone else.”
When Melbourne’s COVID lockdown came to a close, Glenn was fitted with new Phonak Audeo Paradise hearing aids at Ear and Hearing. “Phonak Paradise are the best I’ve had by far – my hearing is so much better… I can hear 100% of everything now.”
One of the developments in hearing aid technology which has impressed Glenn, is the improvement in music streaming quality, which is important in his continued work managing Australian artists. “I used to have to take my hearing aids out and put my ear pods in to hear the music properly… now I can listen to music through the hearing aids and the quality is extraordinary. I love the way the hearing aids adjust to the music on my devices.” Glenn is also looking forward to streaming directly to the hearing aids from his television; and trying the Tap Control feature to pause and resume streaming by touching his ear rather than his phone.
With COVID restrictions easing, Glenn is enjoying having hearing aids which adapt to a variety of situations, from following conversations in restaurants to quiet conversations at home. “I love the way they just adapt to the environment, it’s wonderful.” He pays special homage to the decreased burden on those around him, including his wife, now that he’s able to hear “with enormous clarity” the first time, rather than asking those around him to repeat themselves. “It’s amazing, I’m loving it and my wife is loving it.”
During what was an unprecedented and challenging year globally, 2020 saw significant milestones for Glenn, including the 40th anniversary of founding Australia’s first FM radio station; and Master’s Apprentices’ Because I Love You being selected to join the Sounds of Australia registry for its defining impact on Australian culture. Now, with his hearing on track, Glenn is looking forward to an even brighter 2021. “I’m more satisfied than I’ve ever been. I’m thoroughly enjoying life at the moment.”
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