In five people with severe dementia, we measured their behavioral and physiological responses to familiar/unfamiliar music and speech, and measured ERP responses to subject's own name (SON) after exposure to familiar/unfamiliar music or noise. We observed more frequent behavioral responses to personally-significant stimuli than non-personally-significant stumuli, and higher skin temperatures for music than non-music conditions. The control group showed typical ERPs to SON, regardless of auditory exposure. ERP measures were unavailable for the dementia group given challenges of measuring EEG in this population. The study highlights the potential for personally-significant auditory stimuli in enhancing responsiveness of people with severe dementia.