2019 by the season!

Winter, I love winter in the Ozarks! Prompt Me was my main focus and it was better than I ever could’ve imagined! So thrilled with the participation and the songs that were born from thoughtful prompts and deep places. Every song was a gift and I am grateful to you all for your support and encouragement!

Spring! Just trying to keep up with the trees and edible weeds and eat as much as I can as I try, unsuccessfully, to tame it. Enjoying time at home with my doggy and kitty. Wrapping up the first school year at Ann Brown Memorial School. (That’s another blog….)

Summer will find me up north in Wisconsin and Michigan doing what I love most: camps and festivals!

Fall and into winter, I will be recording the songs written during Prompt Me! I haven’t been this excited about recording in a while. Plus I have many songs from the 2015/16 Soulwriters Groups that I equally love, so I am eager to make progress.

More as it happens! As always, thanks for reading, sharing your love and energy, and following your dreams!

Happy 2019 and bring on 2020!

2019 Happy New Year!

May Krampus not take your children away in a basket! Here’s cheers to abundance and equality for all! Hope everyone had a safe and fun holiday season. One of my highlights was getting to dress up as Krampus at the Cattywampus Art and Craft Fair! I didn’t realize I had such a fondness for creatures of the green variety – Krampus, Yoda, Kermit, Puff, and the Grinch! I also had great fun drumming and participating in the UUFF Solstice Ritual and the next night went to a lovely house concert to see two of my friends perform and got to play ping pong with some serious pongers! I stayed a week in St. Louis with my family. I’m so glad we had that time together and I’m glad to be back home! A lovely New Year’s Eve dinner with friends and New Year’s Day celebrating at home with a fire in the wood stove, my doggy, Cubby and my kitty, Hobbit, while drinking champagne and moving into and organizing my new art room!

Prompt Me is going well! There are still openings if you’d like to have a song written with the prompt of your choice. Check it out here on my website! Here’s some feedback from folks who are involved:

“I love it. It’s perfect”

“Wonderful!  You really dig deep for this one.  I marveled at how gracefully you handled all those technical words and concepts.  The sing along element is perfect and automatic.  You can’t help but echo the word.”

“Lovvvvvve it.”

“This is awesome…I love how you come around after educating bout the 

WHYS…you give the HOW TO’S!  Great job…oughta enter it in [song contests]”

“This definitely stays in my playlist.”

“Omg! Perfect!  I love the humorous tone that you used to address a very true topic. The tempo and whistling gave a light hearted old fashioned tone. You did a great job with a tough prompt.

And I actually think this song will make my journey this week a little easier. I’m gonna be whistling…”

What’s your prompt? For only $5 a month for a limited time, I will write you a song!

Summer 2018

Jori shadesWhat? Summer 2018….Where does the time go? oh yeah, mowing the yard…..and now it’s August…..that went fast!

Hello Friends! Hope your summer is fruitful and fun! July was most memorable for me at National Women’s Music Festival where I led the Ukulele Chorus – So Proud of the 13 festie performers! THEN I taught a session of Girls Rock Camp – Madison! I got to manage and coach a band of 5 girls, they got to record their song and perform to a packed house. I got to perform 2 of my own songs for the whole camp! Nothing like a camp for some good girl bonding! (festivals when we get older!)

I got a new website, I’m now on Instagram, AND starting next month, I will be the Music Mentor at the Ann Brown Memorial School. Ann Brown was a well-respected educator and change agent, very active with the Democratic Women and was invited to attend Jimmy Carter’s inauguration. She taught at Washington Elementary and then at her own Brown’s Kindergarten in the 1950s. Ann was dedicated to projects that served students, poor, elderly and that conserved and protected the earth’s resources. She helped build many cottages on her farm to provide low-cost housing to students and artists. And I lived in one of those cottages for 7 years and recorded my first CD there!

In addition, Fridays at the Ann Brown Memorial School will be Performing Arts Fridays with Jules Taylor and Jori Costello. For $40 per day, your child gets 3 1/2 hours of singing, dancing, music, and theatre. A performance at the end of every class! For registration, email: PerformingArtsABMS@gmail.com

I’ve been delving into more theatre projects including adding soundscape to an original script envisioned by Jules Taylor featuring the writings of Sue Coppernoll, “An Old Woman Speaks”.  Coming this fall, I will also be adding music to the Smokehouse Players production of “Talking With”. My own play “Songs of My Soul”, will be produced again at various festivals and events, and big dreams down the road……can’t tell you everything now, where’s the suspense in that?

For my Birthday this September, I’m launching a new year long songwriting project, “Prompt Me!” A song a week for a year based on your prompts. For $5 a month for a year, (or one time investment of $60), you get to submit a phrase or a theme for a prompt. I’m asking for at least 52 people, 1 prompt a week, and you will receive about an mp3 each week revealing the prompt, who sent it in, and how I interpreted it. This comes out to 4 songs a month at $1.25 a song. This will be private you tube links (paypal) or patron only posts (Patreon page) and will not be shared on the internet at large. From now until Sept. 2019, I’m asking you to consider taking this journey with me. I trust I’m not the only one who has turned inward over the last couple years grappling and coping, while working toward change and equality. I’ve been writing, journaling, reading books, maybe writing a book, despairing and grieving over the state of things and then turning it into hope and positivity as best I can because after all, I am a creative and that’s how I survive. As I become a school music teacher this year at Ann Brown Memorial School, it will challenge me and frustrate me, no doubt, but the growth I will experience will be priceless. My goal is to turn this year of teaching and learning and speaking my truth into song with your input and feedback. Every so often, I will ask which songs you like, which ones do you think should be produced, or different interpretations of the themes. So I hope this intrigues you and I thank you with immense gratitude and appreciation.

I so appreciate each and every one of you reading this. As I cull through emails, pictures, and comments, I am finding the sweetest messages, so many well wishes and words of love, and so many fond memories! I am moved by your encouragement and to know you enjoy the music is the most fulfilling feeling. Thank you for joining in the rhythm of the music and celebrating all that we are creating here. Music is the Magic! Namasté