Clicking the blue link below plays my song:

Just a Tune Home Recording 9/29/16 Copyright 2016 by Judy Unger

The lyrics above were revisions to my song “Just A Tune” that were made in 2012. My original lyrics from 1970 did not mention becoming my own best friend.

The lyrics above were revisions to my song “Just A Tune” that were made in 2012. My original lyrics from 1978 did not mention becoming my own best friend.


Copyright 2014 by Judy Unger

Just a tune to tell you, you’ve been on my mind

I’m so thankful for our love

you’re someone I never dreamed I’d find.


You’ve shown me how to care

I’m blessed because you were always there

But with everything you have given me

The greatest gift was that moment when

I could feel love again.


Just a tune to tell you,

how much you’ve done for me

don’t know how I lived without you

before we met I was so empty


You’ve helped my heart to mend

From you I’ve learned to be my own best friend

But with everything you have given me

The greatest gift was that moment when

I could feel love again

For such a long time I felt alone

You came along, filled me with song

and love I’ve never known

Just a tune to tell you, love made my life new

My broken heart has healed

it began from the moment I met you

You’ve shown me how to care

and what it means to be my own best friend

but with everything you have given me

the greatest gift was that moment when

I could feel love

I could feel again

Now I can feel love again

Love made my life new

Judy & Cheryl in 1985

“Only Three Chords”

Hearing my beautiful arrangement was like being surrounded by a lovely fragrance all day long. I was intoxicated and heady as the melody looped through my mind and heart.

The arrangement evolved in three sessions.

The song was almost finished after the second session but I wasn’t that excited about it. The thought of continuing to work on it with George wasn’t something I looked forward to. I didn’t want to interfere with his magic by picking apart the arrangement.

Many times, especially with a song I’d written years ago, it wasn’t easy for me to hear it in a different way. When George created a new ending, it didn’t move me the way the original ending did.

I told George that I was sorry for being such a “stick-in-the-mud” and he created the ending I wanted. Still, the song was unfinished for me and I wasn’t sure what would change that.

At my next hypnotherapy session I worked with my therapist, Connie to brainstorm some other approaches to this. I decided not to label myself in a negative way with a term like “stick-in-the-mud.” My song was about finding love and ironically my truest feelings were expressed with the simple phrase of: “I prefer my original ending because I just love the way it sounds.”

I recently performed my song at Kulak's Woodshed. I'm back performing but have difficulty opening my eyes because of dry eye problems.

I recently performed my song at Kulak’s Woodshed. I’m back performing but have difficulty opening my eyes because of dry eye problems.

I came to the third session and George said, “Is the song finished? What do you want to change?” (He might have said “wreck”).

I smiled and surprised myself. I said, “I feel like some of the chord passages are repetitive. I’m open to changing some of the chords. Can we try that?”

I guess I wasn’t such a stick-in-the-mud, after all!

For half an hour, George tinkled on his piano. Within an instant, I heard fabulous variations that I had never thought of. My melody would remain the same, but those chord changes lifted my song into another place. How could three chord changes make such a difference?

All of the choruses had to be replayed and re-recorded. When George finished he said, “Jude, next time can you please decide what chords you want before we start the arrangement?”

Both of us were pleased with the end result. I let George know he had knocked it out of the park for me once again; his arrangement was spectacular.

So now I’ve decided that sometimes coming up with new chords for a song can be a wonderful thing. All of this is now framed by my mantra of: “I love the sounds that move me.”

I get to choose those sounds. It’s okay to be unsure and exploring can be fun!

Cheryl & I solvang 2

I wrote my song “Just a Tune” in 1978 when I was 18 years old and it was dedicated to my best friend at that time named Cheryl. The lyrics were simple and my song had a catchy repetitive melody. I loved singing it and my friend did, too.

I created my first arrangement of “Just a Tune” in 2011. Like many of my early arrangements I recorded two guitar tracks first and George created his arrangement around it.

Click the blue link to hear a snippet of my first arrangement from 2011:

JUST A TUNE #1 – Blog excerpt

Now when George and I create an arrangement, it is done with a process called Midi. Everything is much smoother rhythmically and I record my guitar into the arrangement after it’s finished.

When I first recorded “Just a Tune,” I revised the lyrics considerably and shortened it. For my newest arrangement, I revised the lyrics even more and George encouraged me to add a bridge.

George also made an excellent suggestion that we modulate the last chorus and the key goes up a whole step. But his musical genius came through when he created seamless modulation at the bridge before the last chorus. I always treasure his ability to make my song into a masterpiece.

Diary- being real & Cheryl 2

One of the most emotional lines in my song for me is “that moment when.” Originally, my song rhymed the words “again” and “friend.” I decided I wanted perfect rhymes and instead chose the word “when” to rhyme with “again.” Everything fell into place with that change because I also inserted the word “best” in front of friend.

When I sing “that moment when” I feel tremendous emotion because I’m reminded of the blessed moment my life changed because God healed me with beautiful music. And I did become my own best friend after years of loneliness.

Throughout my life, I’ve maintained many wonderful friendships. I have exceptional friends who have stuck by my side for decades.

But when I was younger things were different. My friendships were filled with unbridled joy and intimate sharing. And the flip side was that I often coped with emotional turmoil when things didn’t go well.

When I began writing this blog, I delved into one of my deepest hurts that occurred while I was in high school. I suffered terribly when things went badly with a friend named Elena whom I adored.

When I met Cheryl in college, she definitely inspired me musically because her passion for life was infectious. I opened my heart again and my song “Just a Tune” reflected that.

That time period in my life was so joyous. Besides adoring Cheryl, I was close to all of my girlfriends at that time. It was a special “club” and those memories are ones I cherish. Once I was married, it all ended and so did my music.

Unfortunately, I experienced that same and very familiar disappointment during my relationship with Cheryl. Things were never really resolved and we drifted apart for many years. We reunited a decade later, but she lived far away and we were never close again like we were in the past.

Sadly, Cheryl died in 2008 after battling with breast cancer for 11 years. I stayed in touch with her mother. Attending her mother’s funeral a year ago was my chance to truly say goodbye to Cheryl because I wasn’t able to attend her funeral in Cleveland.

I love how Cheryl lives on for me through my songs.

Cheryl & I singing together

When I recorded “Just a Tune” in 2011, I wondered if my song was a prophecy for me to find love again later in my life. So many of my songs have been prophetic. I wrote songs about grief before ever experiencing it.

For my first arrangement I sang, “I can feel joy again” instead of “I can feel love again.”

At that time, I was very joyful about music and healing. But for my new arrangement, I decided to return to singing about love. I definitely could “feel again.” But had I ever stopped loving?

I certainly loved my children and parents; I was completely devoted to them.

My devotion to others came with a high price because I denied every feeling I had. I accepted my empty marriage and didn’t feel I deserved companionship or affection. I had little joy and refused to allow for any feelings of sadness either.

Finding the courage to change my life was ultimately a huge testament to self-love. I was valuable and deserved more from life. I never wanted to hurt my children or my husband whom I had been with for so many years of my life.

But if I continued living the way I was, I had no hope for happiness. Feeling love and subsequent joy happened as a result of giving myself permission to write and create music. I preferred the concept of “feeling love” to “feeling joy” for my second arrangement.

When I think of Cheryl, I am always reminded of how precious life is. She desperately wanted to live.

I am blessed because my life is truly a gift. I’ve decided to unwrap it now and enjoy what’s inside.

Just a Tune songsheet A

My original songsheet from 1978.

My original song sheet from 1978.

Cheryl's card



How can I tell you how much you mean to me – how much your advice and company bring happiness into my life? I’m not really one for words, so I think I’ll just end on this note (♪). You mean everything to me and I never want to lose you.

I love you, Cheryl

Judy, Cheryl & Just a Tune

© Judy Unger and http://www.myjourneysinsight.com 2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Judy Unger with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

About Judy

I'm an illustrator by profession. At this juncture in my life, I am pursuing my dream of writing and composing music. Every day of my life is precious!
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4 Responses to JUST A TUNE – PART 2

  1. jmgoyder says:

    Absolutely beautiful!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Judy says:

      Thank you, Julie! I never in my wildest dreams imagined that when I wrote my song at the age of 18, I’d be singing it again as a 55-year-old woman. Cheryl would be very touched and proud of me. I hope you had a wonderful Christmas Holiday.

      Liked by 1 person

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