For musician Michael "Mick" Beaman, being diagnosed with young-onset Parkinson's disease almost 10 years ago was a life-changing experience.

"It opened my eyes to a whole new world," said Beaman. "How we treat the ones who love us, that's what's important."

Beaman played his third concert at the Glass Onion Cafe, 1990 W. River Road, Sunday.

The first and third shows were to raise both awareness and funding for Team Fox, The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research. The second was for another fundraiser he was asked to play.

After falling into depression following his diagnosis, Beaman, now 40, pulled himself together and decided to put his lifelong love of music to good use.

"I just try to do what I can," said Beaman. "I believe I've been given a small talent, and I spread the word any way I can. Every time I play, 100 percent of every penny I make goes to Team Fox. I just believe in doing the next right thing."

His voice and guitar commanded the attention of cafe patrons and family friends for about two hours as he played cover songs and originals.

Beaman performs about every other month, but would like to play more.

"If I could get out there and play every day in a different venue, I would," he said.

In the meantime, he deals with the disease on a day-by-day basis, taking medication every four to six hours. During a short break between sets, Beaman got hugs from his children and a kiss from his girlfriend, Barbara Kohl.

"An excellent support system is the best thing you can have, and I have that. I'm very blessed," said Beaman.

Go to mickbeaman to hear some of his music. E-mail him at to find out more about his performances.

Contact photographer Greg Bryan at or 307-1709