Thursday, September 3, 2009


So I ended up with something like 73 points from my cleaning quest, earning myself ZERO rewards and no residual "self esteem" which no one can give us we just have to earn. Sheesh.
Turns out that the night I created my self imposed whip thrashing duty list one of my oldest and truest friends passed away. Unexpectedly. With no warning. It's thrown me for a loop. Two nights ago I had to listen to what I have so far on the album so I could decide how to best use my studio time and I drove around till 2 am. Ended up outside Lonnie and Ardene's house, looking into the sky above their home and sobbing. My kitchen counter is still covered with stuff. The peaches are weeping in their skins inside their half-bushel basket. Stacks of papers remain untouched.
And who cares.
Not me.
At least I pretend I don't.
I think it is sort of rude of the world to keep spinning. For papers to keep coming in the mail. For the phone to keep ringing. For our own bodies to want to eat and to sleep. Everything should stop, at least for a minute, pause out of respect if nothing else. Ardene Bullard is heaven bound and we are earth bound and none of us are the same. The world should stop, for a sec, don't you think?
So I'm feeling a little melencholy and a little alone. I'm focused on this Christmas Album II because I have to be if I want it to be out before Christmas.
Saturday night I did a benefit concert with my friends Nancy Hanson and Cherie Call. Cherie is doing a new album, too. She's starting this week and plans to have it for sale in October.
ARE YOU KIDDING ME? I said. Mind you I've been working on mine since last December. (The very day, in fact, that our Bishop called me to be Young Womens President.) So I knew from the get go there might be a little time conflict. Cherie has a producer. Scott Wiley, in fact. I have to talk myself out of being jealous.
In my way of thinking there are two kinds of time. There's REAL TIME, and there's EMOTIONAL TIME. I may have enough real time to do all sorts of things. But my emotional time and my actual time do not match up. Some things may only take five minutes of real time, but they are hours of emotional time.
My EMOTIONAL time is gone. I keep trying to make more, trying to get a little UMPH in my head and my body. But I'm having trouble finding it.
Making an album, for me, is a rather solitary thing. I miss Merlyn. I miss having someone as interested as I am in this thing that takes so much of my creativity, my intelligence, my energy and my interest. I miss having someone want to hear what I did in the studio today, to care that there's now live bass, or to help me decide if the vocal is good enough. It's OK. It's my choice to do this. But it is a rather risky thing to do and it gets a little lonely sometimes. So next time you hear a recording of a song, even on the elevator, try to figure out how many instruments and how many people are playing on that thing and how long it took collective minds (or solitary minds, in some cases) to create that 3 minute piece of entertainment.
Or, don't.
It really doesn't matter. We do what we do because we want to , or because someone we owe allegience to compels us to do it.
I am rambling. I'll quit.
It's time to go to the YW volleyball game anyway.


  1. I cannot wait for the album! The writing and recording process sounds so painfully complex, yet after all is said and done, the product plays so seamlessly that all I can hear is the sweet music that makes me weep everytime. Seriously, scrubbing the kitchen floor and mopping my tears in tandem. Tearfully joyous house cleaning, indeed!

  2. Let one who has done a recording or two stand up with you regarding the complexity of the project. And the DECISIONS. Tatiana said it well; after all the work, the whole thing plays seamlessly in less than an hour. Almost seems unfair. Regarding the loss of your friend, I read the obits (The Irish Sports Page) in the Uniontown Herald-Standard and WAY too many familiar names are popping up. That plus turning 60 in two weeks results in a tumultuous "OH WELL" from me too, Cori. But our friend Allen Levi said it best when quoting Psalm 16 and please allow me to paraphrase. Our lines have fallen in pleasant places, right here with You. God still has your picture on his fridge, dear.

  3. Its the "oh well" in you that makes you such a fantastic friend to other, the best gummy, and a wonderful mother in law. you have your priorities straighter than most....that i am sure of.

    i sure love you!

  4. I enjoyed being with you and your songs last night. Your mom and her life always reminds me of mine. That is the key to a good story--most of us can relate to some part of it. I liked your concept of real time and emotional time. I have never thought of it before but it is so true and even profound. I look forward to new stories in song from you.

  5. i weep as i read this and am sorry i am not there for you. perhaps it is a bit like child birth - you do all the work, go through all the pain, alone and we all reap the benefits. whether it be your children or your songs. thankyou for your willingness to produce and create. it is beautiful!

  6. All of your creative angst brings beauty--so thank you! The Sunday after the funeral Micheal said to me, "What did you think of Cori's song?" He said, "I thought it was just perfect." Thank you. Andrea and Mike, more than once, have mentioned your amazing kindness to their family.

  7. Mom, I love you and I love your music. I am SOOOOO excited to hear your new album. And you can call me anytime to tell me when they put live bass...or when you're stressed...or when you need someone to listen. Thank you for working so hard to make such beautiful creations. You are my inspiration. And I agree with Ashley - your priorities are more straight than most and it's the 'oh well' that makes you who you are - you respond to people more than time, to emotions more than logic, to hearts more than heads.

  8. I always read yours words and wish I could be as inspiring. You are truly that, an inspiration! You have a gift (many actually). You are one of the best friends (to everyone). You would be considered a best friend to almost everyone you meet, because that's how you make them feel. In fact, we all feel like you are our best friend, when in reality, it might seem impossible. You provide such incredible soothing for other souls through your music. I find myself listening to it (sometimes Christmas, even when it is not Christmas), just so I can hear your story through song). I love to hear the way you put lyrics with notes. Amazing. So, if you think it goes unnoticed, then all you have to be is REMINDED that we all love your stuff. You have been blessed with an ability to juggle a million things. How do you do it? You think to yourself, probably not very well, but from an outsiders view, I am convinced there is motherhood, grandmotherhood, young women's leader, friend, neighbor, wife, and talented song writer, along with the most important one, making ANY one and EVERY one feel at home in your home or around you. I love what you do. Don't ever stop!

  9. dear cori,
    i like this post.
    actually, i love this post.
    i, dare i say, "luf" this post.
    because it makes me think of all the wonderful little things in life we take for granted every single second.
    like typing on this keyboard and seeing the letters pop right into the places i want them to, so that i can talk to you, even in this virtual way.
    today, my mom and i were searching for some good music in the car, and we were both too disappointed for words that we didn't have anything from our beautiful friend, Cori.
    Thank you for working so hard and spending so much precious energy on the music which brings so much happiness to all of us, even when we are having a horrible day or just a boring car ride home.
    luf you, cori

    PS: i love yw volleyball.

  10. Cori,
    You did an amazing job at Ardene's funeral. Sam and I have talked about how wonderful you were several times since. I always look forward to hearing your music.

  11. Can't wait to buy your new Christmas album! I know I will love it!!!!

  12. I wish I could be that person in the studio with you.

  13. Hi Cori! This is Emily Mabey Swensen, Ralph's daughter. I mentioned a song of yours in my blog, for the second time, and so this time I was determined to find a way to link one of your songs to my post. People ask me about them. Well as you probably know, I couldn't find one published online (though I did find a youtube video of your recent concert! ;) Did you know that was there?!). Anyway, I had seen your website before but had never stumbled across your blog. I love it! You sound so much like me! Ok, that may not sound very good--I just mean that our writing styles and approaches to life as recorded on the blog sound eerily similar. I'm glad to have found it (even if no one reads it, as you say, ha ha). I feel the same way about mine. I'm going to link to you on mine, and hope to see you soon. I promised myself once our adoption was complete I would start guitar lessons, and now our two girls from Ethiopia are here, so it's MY TURN! Can't wait to hear the new album.