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The Town Where Everything Revolves Around... Turkey and Braille Atlas: Writing Music to Overcome Grief

Our American Stories / Lee Habeeb
The Truth Network Radio
June 24, 2022 3:03 am

The Town Where Everything Revolves Around... Turkey and Braille Atlas: Writing Music to Overcome Grief

Our American Stories / Lee Habeeb

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June 24, 2022 3:03 am

On this episode of Our American Stories, Jennie Badger tells us her story of growing up in the Turkey Capital of the World, Cuero, Texas. Cody Johnston shares how his love for music helped him cope with his mothers declining health and how it not only inspired him, but many others.

Support the show (https://www.ouramericanstories.com/donate)

 

Time Codes: 

00:00 - The Town Where Everything Revolves Around... Turkey

10:00 - Braille Atlas: Writing Music to Overcome Grief

See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

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Visit Vanguard.com and discover ownership from shareholders on the phones don't Vanguard middle-market Corporation Streeter this is Lee Habib and Mrs. our American stories. The show where Americans the store and the American people and you can go to the iHeartRadio app to get our podcasts or go wherever else you might find next we have a listener story from Jenny Badger in Texas. Jenny is going to share with us a unique, small town story, small town story about the small town she grew up in and just so happens to be the turkey capital of the world's gin. I was boarding rates in Clarendon, Texas. It has a population of about 7000 people and it was now 4 inch turkey farms so everything revolves around billboards around where they not only say turkey capital of the world. They say where America talks turkey my brother for example, 13 in normal high school, at the prompting the sky is and I was on the scene and I was a trotter. The high school student newspaper is called turkey talk. It was very normal tasks that now that mean that's hilarious. There's not a lot to do there, so unite almost by default get involved in the community and every senior year as they would have this nonsense come turkey trot turkey try ways at four day festival that was just kind of randomly held every few years.

There was no rhyme or reason to the years that it was hell and it was really to celebrate the turkey farming town and because where I was known for raising turkeys.

It was always a Turkish pain. There was always an man and women who reigned over the festivities and it was assaulted in the saltine so in 1972. My dad was saltine yet Kratz the 14th and yet Kratz is turkeys fell backward, the woman who reigned with him. Her official title was saltine Orient and Orient is Claro spelled backwards so they reigned over turkey trot in 1972 and I was eight at the time and I and my brother and sister where my father's pages so we have to hold his robe public events and stuff like that and we were dressed in just to see tire you know that up to toe shoes and coming at me, just as you would imagine, like a Turkish servants and my dad. He was a small town lawyer was a very dignified man. He was very kind and I always say he was like Atticus Finch in to Kill a Mockingbird because he was so distinguished and well respected, and never stop. The spotlight never likes to grandstand and I mean for four days. He wore a white suit and a red velvet robe that had a border gold sequence and then this really big hand beaded turkey on the back of his robe and he wandered around fire all weekend for different events in that attire. He was basically the center of attention for those four days. There were coronation Senior coronation in a junior coronation and so he got to sit up on his throne during the Senior coronation.

While all of this young women of the town like a high school age and older kids bow before him and did this all coronation stuff like Debbie but we have Debbie's but it was the same idea. I suppose they have a competition with the town of Minnesota both to claim to be turkey capital of the world.

So the two turkeys brace Ruby begonia is Claro Texas turkey that always races in Minnesota and then they come back Claro and racing Claro, and whoever has the best time out about this races gets that.

I think it's called the traveling trophy of tumultuous trying and they get to carry that thing back and forth between us and text and then ended with the big parade with just times of floats and marching bands from towns and cities all around was a huge deal and its famous newscaster who came down in 1972 broadcasting Claro is a big deal, especially for small town and course. The entire town was there my whole extended family cousins and from both sides of the family.

I mean it was this huge celebration and my cousins came in from out of town. I remember them sleeping on the floors he ran out of bed to sleep in a cotton appearance removes a big party for days.

I don't talk about it a lot. I have talked about people that a sound so insane. One of the reasons it makes it hard to explain, is that it sounds a little bit you like inappropriate cultural appropriation, except that I liken it to you like a dramatic production where everybody's wearing costuming, playing a role for a few days and then at the end. You know you turn in your costume and and you go home in your enriched diet. So I just think it feels very innocent to me because of that was very sad when it was all over and I don't know if it's just a good place for turkeys to live. I don't know if it provides the ultimate habitat for them. I don't know you know they're considered the dumbest animals in the world. I love growing up in that environment. I love going up and Claro and I was sad when that was over so it was a lot of fun in they still have a think I'll turkey best happens every year, but it is a very scaled-down version of what turkey trot was an my nephews go back every year with all her college friends are well out of college now, but they all make it a point to go back Claro so that is kind of hilarious. Looking back on it and a great job on the production by medicine and a special thanks to Jenny Badger, a listener from Claro Texas. This country is filled with small towns that have small-town traditions, my love, that there were two claimants turkey town USA, one of Minnesota wanted Texas and they battle it out. They duke it out every year.

We love telling stories about America. America TOEFL witness. We came here in the 19th century from France studied the prison system in this country. Found out this country just did stuff.

Fun stuff for big stuff and it was the people that did it all. The story of the turkey capital of the world. There are some in Minnesota that I disagree on our American story, Lisa Beebe, or the host of our American stories everyday on the show were bringing inspiring stories from across this great country stores or big cities and small tombs, we truly can't do the show without our stories are free to listen to, but they're not free to make if you love what you hear L American stories.com and click the donate button a little divorce go to L American stories.com and give millions will make Medicare coverage decisions for next year and United healthcare can help you feel confident about your choices for those eligible Medicare annual enrollment runs from October 15 through December 7. If you're working past age 65. You might be able to delay Medicare enrollment. Depending on your employer coverage. It can seem confusing, but it doesn't have to be this would UHC Medicare health plans.com to learn more United healthcare helping people live healthier lives. I know everything there is to know about running a coffee shop for small business insurance.

I need my State Farm agent make sure my business days piping hot and I say cool and confident their small business owners to help you best.

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Call your local State Farm agent for quote today doing household chores can Artie be time-consuming and tedious. And there's nothing more daunting than facing piles and piles of laundry that need to be done can be overwhelming for anyone. If you want to get those larger laundry loads done right and get back to your life. Try all three clear maggot packs all three clear mega packs are bigger packs two times the cleaning ingredients compared to a regular packs of that you can tackle any laundry load without the worry all three clear mega packs are also 100% free of perfumes and dyes and their dental and skin which is great for any families sensitive skin needs my family. We definitely have sentence again the next time the whole family gets home from long vacation or you get the kids back from summer camp or whatever the situation is.

That's because this big pile of dirty clothes and all three clear maggot packs have your back purchase all three clear mega packs today and conquer any laundry load for all fabric types stories of mixed we bring you the story of Cody Johnston's been a musician throughout his life and he currently releases music under the name Brill was his love for music started at home. Here's Cody. My mom was a country music singer locally so not pro level by any means, but local talent shows local clubs and things like that. She was very into that scene for quite a while and my dad is always been a closet singer could not be the world but say it anyway, so I liberal car trips we used to ride just saying I have old karaoke tapes of me, my mom singing together before she she got a little sicker and it was it was a lot of fun.

My love for instrumental music goes back to I can pinpoint an exact time in kindergarten. I remember I was a baseball game and they gave away these little handheld light AM/FM radios that like just the those cheap little radios you plug in some cheap headphones to just a little manual dialing, you could die once radio stations and pretty much the only radio station. It really picked up well was the classical radio station and I remember every time I was at school and we had rain today so it had recess inside. I would pop my earbuds in and listen to classical music and it sparked my love for instrumental music music composition and just how all that goes together music to me has always been one of those things where I feel it more than I even ripped I'm one of those weird people I didn't think it was weird, but apparently it's weird that like when I listen to music, my heart races. I get chills. I can do what he calls me to sweat like it. I physically react to music accept. Be careful of what kind of music I consume because music can very well change my mood even a little more so that it probably should. But music is something that moves me at a very deep level that's actually where I got my name from Brill Atlas because to me music is a journey and it's something that it's a journey to be felt.

It's a journey that you may not ever physically see a map, but when it unfolds before you. It takes you places. I think the earliest memories I have of like trying to play music is whenever I was a child I was in a dollar a dollar store and they had this little flute that would kinda like a little bored or little potato and it was: ocarina. And it was just a cheap little party favor, but I bought it and I thought of supercooled and as most 90s and early 2000 skin will remember just a few weeks later I was at Best Buy and they had those awesome demos and there is a Nintendo 64 and that same flute was on the cover of one of those games and so that's kinda what bridged into the whole loving videogame music, and like film score music and all that and that was the legend of Zelda. As I started playing this demo I film over the instrument even more. But as I grew up. I never really thought about pursuing music until I was 13 I was 12. Christmas 12 is about to turn 13. The next year and my dad was with my cousin who was a in a heavy like you and heavy metal. I pop pop punk band that was about to be signed and so he was about to go off with him and everything in my dad like man I love that you can play this music everything I want to give my my son that opportunity. So they went down to guitar Center involved. This blue squire hanging on my wall and was like hey it's a cheap guitar but something to start out on if he wants to do it is not something we can sell later.

While it sat in my room for about a year until one day I was bored out of my mind and picked it up. I went to about.com with his about his fancies. It came at the time and started learning basic basic basic guitar stuff and through the years I've just picked up more insurance and more things along the way and it's grown from there. Once I started playing guitar. I got heavily involved in my church which I was my mom progressed over when her mom passed away.

She didn't really deal with her depression of losing her mom at a younger age and it pushed her into alcoholism.

And as she kind of pushed into that I pushed more into the church and into music as my escape so as at the age of 15. So just a couple years after I started, playing by myself in my room. I joined up with the youth group and then we end up starting a local band that did some touring around playing like Christian rock and stuff like that week traveled to a bunch of churches in like the southern area and I really introduced a bunch of older people have no idea what Christian rock was into rock music and some of them loved it and some of them hated it but it was fun, matter what and I started doing worship team stuff had a couple weird experiences where I ended up having to cut away the music down for little while actually had an experience where the church that I was at my dad had noticed that I wasn't being by. I guess my what my guitar wasn't playing through the antlers resist the health system and he had asked that the sound guy why that was so he's like you know he's been up there for a year playing like he's good enough. What's going on and the sound. I basically told us that I was up there to keep you happy, not actually be heard because their church didn't like that type of music so I got really mad at music in general and God, whatever you want to call it.

And at the age of the one essay that happened when I was 16 about to be 17. I laid music down for your well within a year. I guess after that situation I guess I got over that bitterness ended up stepping back up onto a new churches team and I led there for 7 1/2 years and so that really gave me the opportunity to play with some amazing musicians. They had a very diverse background.

Everyone from an organ player and an old tiny church to a rocker who use to I he was stationed in Japan or Korea. I'm not sure which one used to play bagpipes like within the IQ play guitar bagpipes for other I guess soldiers overseas.

We had a guy who was just in like a death metal band like we had all this like wide ranges of jazz drummer that we have a very wide mix.

I learned a lot of different styles of music and it taught me a ton about music composition and how different instruments can work together and that really started holding my my love for more dynamic music again.

It started bringing back those memories of whenever I was younger and then it all, happened to where I did up leaving my position there and right after I left, I lost my voice completely.

I was I was a lead worship pastor so I did all the singing. All the music you getting everything together. I play guitar and sing simultaneously will I guess when I stepped out I had just fried my voice and so I did up going to doctors like I can speak for about 10 minutes and I would go horse. I couldn't seeing I lost about half of my range and singing and it wrecked me because hey, I felt like this was my purpose in life and the music is by far like my biggest passion in life and I had done it on a you and I guess it was my my thing I did for 7 1/2 years even before that, I mean I was in the band everything but this was my job for seven years and when I lost my voice. I was like what worth do I have what what value can I bring how am I supposed to fulfill what I truly believe is my purpose if I can't use my voice in your listing to Cody Johnston telling the story of his passion for music which started with a transistor radio only signal he could clear on that little transistor radios a classical music station and from there, my goodness, I physically react to music that can change my mood takes me places and of course takes the place it takes to Mr. churches and worship and there is no finer music in the country than some of the great worship music in America and as Augustine once said when we sing we pray twice and now he learned he couldn't sing anymore. He lost his voice.

What worth do I have when we come back to find out the answer to that question Cody Johnston's question on our American store millions will make Medicare coverage decisions for next year and United healthcare can help you feel competent about your choices for those eligible Medicare annual enrollment runs from October 15 through December 7. If you're working past age 65. You might be able to delay Medicare enrollment. Depending on your employer coverage. It can seem confusing, but it doesn't have to be this UHC Medicare health plans.com to learn more United healthcare helping people live healthier lives. I know everything there is to know about running a coffee shop for small business insurance. I need my State Farm agent make sure my business days piping hot and I think cool and confident they are small business owners to help you best.

State Farm is in your corner and on like that neighbor there. Call your local State Farm agent for quote today doing household chores can Artie be time-consuming and tedious.

There's nothing more daunting than facing piles and piles of laundry that need to be done can be overwhelming for anyone.

If you want to get those larger laundry loads done right and get back to your life. Try all three clear maggot packs all three clear mega packs are bigger packs two times the cleaning ingredients compared to a regular pack so that you can tackle any laundry load without the worry all three clear mega packs are also 100% free of perfumes and dyes and gentle on skin, which is great for any family sensitive skin needs my family. We definitely have sentence again the next time the whole family gets home from long vacation or you get the kids back from summer camp or whatever the situation is. That's because this big pile of dirty clothes. All three clear maggot packs have your back purchase all three clear mega packs today and conquer any laundry load for all fabric types stories in the story of Cody Johnston was left off. Cody had just given up his job seven years as a worship leader church for some unknown reason he lost his voice and in a way, the sense of purpose.

Let's go back to Cody. So what you want to doctors is nothing wrong. No one can find anything wrong. It was just simply that I was stressed out. My voice was completely stressed in basically the advice that was given to me was quit singing quit speaking quit doing all the things you've been doing for so long and give yourself time to rest and had always been a guitar player, by nature, that which is kind of my my main instrument, but I had recently picked up a couple other stringed instruments.

I picked up a mandolin secondhand. I had a keyboard and I was drumming a little bit just for the fun of it and so I sat down and I got behind my little piano that I had and I started poking around some keys and I realize that I actually use instruments to take people places just in an even deeper way that I could with my voice alone because vocals and you know I love music was singing, of course, there's nothing wrong with that at all, but there's something about someone telling you where to go versus someone laying out the map and allowing you to pick your destiny should and I just fell in love with that I fell in love with the idea of presenting someone in Atlas versus giving them turn by turn navigation of where I wanted them to go. You know I had a passion for worship music, but it was very much me telling people what they should be feeling this type of music gave me that ability to sit down and say wow music in general or life in general is so much more unrestricted than I thought it was before.

And there's so many different places that I can now go and explore. And as for the tieback to videogame music. One of the things I loved was how a lot of older videogame music. They only had so much data to work with. So these instruments were polished and perfect there very digitally and kind of you know honestly what we would consider crappy sounding and you know after you kind of sit there with them for a while you like while you can do a whole lot with a whole little and so just all of that just poured back in and you could say that almost found my second voice so my mom's relationship are mine and my mother's relationship with music is interesting because music was also something that she held common with her mother, my grandmother passed away whenever I think I was only three and when she did it caused my mom slowly over time. Start distancing and my mother struggled with alcoholism until it took her life in 2018 and I can remember that as my mom progressed in her and her addiction that music became something that she would fall back to a lot in a way a lot of my early musical career. Being on stages and things like that I think gave my mom the ability to vicariously live those memories again through me and music was one of those things where if she was in the mindset of singing if she was wanting to be that person like you brought back who she was before her stage of grief that led her into her illness and so I think even up until I tell number maybe four or five years ago pulling out old tapes with her and listening to her singing in singing along with her these little moments. It's almost like someone going through dementia in the sense of she is started losing pieces of herself to the addiction as it got worse and worse. But there were these little glimmers almost like bringing her back to who I knew her as as a child and it was honestly one of the few things as it progressed, because things got messy and as it progressed.

She very much started pulling away and it started. Alcoholism is very isolating because you push people away because they can't take the pain and that the torment in the verbal abuse that you you spew out under the influence of so much of certain substances, but in the same time. It's very isolating and it draws you deeper into yourself where were you very lonely. Music was the one thing that kind of help pull her out of and before we lost her to alcoholism. Honestly, music was one of the few pieces of conversation that I could still house with my mother. It was and I'm sure in a lot of ways it has fueled my desire because I saw the power that it held to help someone in an emotional state. Actually, when my mother passed away in 2018. The first thing I did was I went and sat behind my piano and started writing and it was very difficult, but I have an entire artist a five song EP dedicated to the anxiety. The clinical anxiety.

I was in therapy for little over a year.

Just having panic attacks into straight up stressed out because that whole year was crazy as is on top of losing my mother and all the stuff, the one with that, but I literally just wrote down what I was feeling in music.

There is this time when I mother came to visit my grandparents. Her biological father and step and my grandfather was an alcoholic as well. In his younger days, so he related very deeply to my mom and she had been drinking a little. She had a bad tendency of drinking and driving. It was one of the most frustrating elements of her drinking later on in life, but she had came over and my grandmother, her stepmother, she had found this tape of them singing know how long ago was and they were trying to find an old cassette player to play it. And of course my mom wasn't really having it. You just got to herself to it and everything in and she was in a pretty rough mood that day. If I remember right, and my grandfather dug out this old cassette player and popped it in and it was the recording and I was just Dosh.

I was a child and I was on the recording like encouraging like sing this song, sing this song and and my mom and grandmother had these two mics in this old karaoke night actually strangely enough vividly remember them recording it, though I was very young when they did this is no fast-forward whenever I'm an adult that they're going and showing listening to this again, but it like that. Memories flooded back.

And before you know it they're all in the living room having this karaoke session for the next hour and 1/2 singing these old hymns in these old country songs that I couldn't remember the name of all them because it's not my style anymore, but I can just don't remember. Like Patsy Cline and all these other like older country artist that their dislike belting out in the most like stereo typical southern twang fashion ever and before the night was over they were laughing and cutting and it was like having the few memories I have of my mom before she started going down this like I said I was three when she started. Whenever her mother passed away and the few memories I have of her being normal in that moment, it really it came back you been listening to Cody Johnston and what a story is telling about the power of music you learn, he couldn't sing he lost his voice and he needed to rest and what he did instead was pick up a guitar and start to play the keyboards I almost found my second voice that experience with its up and a lot of assessment a career change. Something else like and then we learn about his mom in the struggle with addiction and alcoholism in them the power of music to resuscitate little parts of her. We learn that some Alzheimer stories we did for Alzheimer patients with your song and it would stir some past memory and emotion.

When we come back more of this remarkable piece of storytelling about the power of music and so much more. Cody Johnston story continues here on our American story millions will make Medicare coverage decisions for next year and United healthcare can help you feel competent about your choices for those eligible Medicare annual enrollment runs from October 15 through December 7.

If you're working past age 65. You might be able to delay Medicare enrollment. Depending on your employer coverage. It can seem confusing, but it doesn't have to be UHC Medicare health plans.com to learn more United healthcare helping people live healthier lives. I know everything there is to know about running a coffee shop for small business insurance. I need my State Farm agent make sure my business days piping hot equal and competent business owners to help you best. State Farm is in your corner and on like that neighbor there. Call your local State Farm agent for quote today doing household chores can Artie be time-consuming and tedious. And there's nothing more daunting than facing piles and piles of laundry that need to be done can be overwhelming for anyone.

If you want to get those larger laundry loads down right and get back to your life. Try all three clear mega packs all three clear mega packs are bigger packs two times the cleaning ingredients compared to a regular packs of that you can tackle any laundry load without the worry all three clear mega packs are also 100% free of perfumes and dyes and their dental and skin which is great for any family sensitive skin needs my family. We definitely have sensitive skin.

The next time the whole family gets home from long vacation or you get the kids back from summer camp or whatever the situation is.

That's because this big pile of dirty clothes and all three clear mega packs have your back purchase all three clear mega packs today and conquer any laundry load for all fabric types American stories in the final portion Cody Johnston story. Cody was just talking about his mother who struggled with alcoholism and eventually succumbed to know back to Cody on how we dealt with it and found peace in writing and composing music during that difficult, so I know I was probably a late teen was living with my grandmother at the time I had moved out because of my mother's drinking and just things.

I got a little out of control there and so I moved in with my grandmother and I remember have a picture of it somewhere. I had an old MacBook that was. I did all my schooling and stuff on for when I was younger and I had garage band which is I think a lot of ways.

A lot of us already had the things to start. Had this cheap like 30 2 PM audio midi keyboard. It was like 30 bucks or whatever, but it worked and I realize how you can plug this thing up and make music through your computer and I didn't know anything about audio at the time I had just started learning some I guess me like this is probably a year after that I started even learning because I started getting the podcasting sphere, but I didn't know what recording I know what gain compression and expansion dynamics all that stuff I had no idea like I just remember sitting down and poking around on the keys. There is like all these different cool sound effect. That is, started putting them together and I was a 2014 or 2015. I somewhere in there I started really writing instrumental music and I had my laptop and I had just a white folding table that was my desk because I just moved in with my grandmother's house had no furniture anything.

There's a bed in their nightstand. I set my laptop right on top of that, and I have a picture of it was just this window mounted AC unit in my little laptop which is this keyboard in this like cheap pair of like $20 over the ear headphones and that's how I start and I kind of self talk. Most of my audio stuff to. I took a course online and for two summers, I spent about what was it 100 hours of coursework just learning the basics in for hours upon hours for two years. I just consumed consumer information actually was of the entire course twice just because just a few key things all the way and that's not over time. I slowly started building my understanding of how to do music production, which is kind of what led me to 2018. Whenever I put live really started sitting down and writing down my emotions more than ultimately losing my mother just to try to capture my emotion as I can agree with. It was really a way to express my emotions and ultimately get people that avenues well I don't really know what sparked me to do it. I remember that I sat down with a microphone literally the next day my mom died and just recorded my thoughts.

I sat down and recorded it verbally so I can get out there and then right after her funeral is whenever I started writing and if I remember right I was looking at my wife and I was like, I've got to do something to get this my head and so I sat down and I just started playing this note, and I don't even remember it really being something that I had to try very hard not it was you something that I really laid my hands down on the piano and that's what came out. I remember is like playing this this minor kind of progression in like in a flat key. It was just like this dark sounding thing on like this is how I feel like right now this is what I'm feeling and and the track is actually as it progresses, it gets very like dark and has a very sinister overtone to it and I'm like I don't know how else to describe it.

I what my wife listen to her like this is just this is one dealing now and as I listen to it back. I started crying and I realize like wow this is exactly like this is like the echo we displease this dark red this wait I guess is the best way to college is pushing down on me that I don't know how to get free of and this was a random second piece to that, but I was actually doing some yard work and I saw around so we live on an acre and 1/4's land on a 5 acre plot with my grandparents lived next door to us and so there's this barbed wire fence that goes like this is thin cattle since it goes all the way around the property and I remember is this yardwork I solve this. I once it was a cardinal fly down and just land on the barb wire fence.

This is like such a strange realization to me, but I watched it land on this fence and perfectly land between the pegs of the barb wire just came flying and landed quickly and I discussed off what I was doing I was like this bird has no understanding of what it means to feel captive you know it lands perfectly between two potentially harmful objects unscathed uses it as it for its own benefit and that just leaves on its own when and that's actually what started the second track of that EP, which is actually called the bird on the barb wire boundary and I was is this realization of IQ Beta I don't have to be weighed down by my thoughts. I don't have to hold me prisoner. I can walk right past him unscathed and I don't know how to do that but I truly believe it's possible and I started writing this. This melody that supersedes it bleeds out of this first dark, sinister sound to realize like weight. I don't have to let this be my wife. I can I can pursue being free of these thoughts, whatever that looks like an understanding that there's work to goes into that.

There's mental work. There's preparation. It's not an on-off switch, but that was like that glimmer of hope, which sparks that the other three songs of actually the journey itself of progressing through it and over the course of that year when I would have these little revelations through therapy and through just quiet prayer and meditation and talking with friends and talking with my wife. You know, crying and laughing at all the different things I would sit down and I would poke little pieces of this melody out as it as it went along in Asia putting it on the shelf.

Come 2019.

I laid it on the shelf and I just I wanted to put out but I couldn't finish it. For some reason I could not get to the place of finishing this album and I tried.

There's a few times I would sit down and I would try actually told the world that I was putting it out by 2019. Around Halloween because it had, that October revived to me and I told people that it is a came and went and I just I couldn't get that piece in myself to know was time so 2020 rolls around, and that EP I was looking at October again like I feel like it's time and so I sat down in the very last track which is called the breath in the burial. I realize I was like I had a place now where mutually I'm stronger than I was and I'm at a deeper piece and it's like I finally been a breeze and I can finally like this to rest.

And so I sat down with just a basic melody that I had.

I think I had a very was actually kind of funny. The original melody I had for this kind of fast-paced and aggressive and it just never sat right with me because it just didn't feel like it had room to breathe, and it was very against my own mantra of knowing when not to play just crowded and messy and I realize like that's just that that's why I can never get this out because I was still crowded and messy. I need to come to a place of having some kind of I guess control over my mindset to be ever finished. As I sat down I raced everything but the basic few starting notes and it just came naturally floating within a few days. I had this should draft up and then I went through was able to kind of packages altogether and put out to the world and feel confident about it and to my amazement, thousands of people message me saying this is exactly what I feel. This is how I feel it and it almost in a way like it. It brings me to that place, but on the precipice of realizing I'm not alone, and now I can face it and I've gotten countless messages of that in a way that I never imagined and I was I just flabbergasted is the right word. I was blown away because I wrote this to try to encompass my emotions and it's like my heart anytime you put your heart out there it's it's terrifying. It's scary. And unlike anything else. This specific piece I released 30 something other tracks this year.

Prior to that, but with releasing this one album. It made me realize that I had found my voice again terrific job on the storytelling by Robbie Davis in the production and special thanks to Cody Johnston for sharing his grief and how we cope with it through his music. By the way, some of the music in this piece is Cody's rights under the name Brill Atlas the day after my mom died is that I record my thoughts as I listen to what I played I started crying. It represented the weight. I couldn't get away from the story is about so much more about the power of art and music, to build bridges that help us cope with pain to transcend time until I was old to approach hopefulness in heaven itself. Cody Johnston story on our American story


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