ARTIST: Alice was a home portrait and architectural artist for over 20 years. See samples here: Gallery of ART.

  1. Click on Home portraits. Alice received commissions to draw specific, buildings, mostly historic, throughout Oregon, hence the title of her book, When Buildings Speak, which has the sub title Stories Told by Oregon’s Historical Architecture.
  2. Click on Other Art
  3. Click on Advertising Art
  4. Click on Vignettes of Natural Chaos

MUSICIAN: Alice Cotton is a professional musician who studied music theory and piano beginning at the age of 8 at the Cleveland Institute of Music and continued her musical studies throughout life. She wrote music which she performed as a singer/songwriter and played in bands as both a lead and rhythm guitarist, and as a vocalist. She worked with musicians who played harp, saxophone, trombone, trumpet, keyboard, bass, drums, piano, and various singers. Mostly she had a lot of fun!

Samples of her  classes are here including classes in Math Artistry , Architectural Drawing, Adventures in Geometry, Geometry with M.C. Escher and many more. She also home tutored students in music and mathematics. She taught her classes in public school and for home schooling families.

NOW Alice’s says, “Music, should never become an afterthought in our children’s education. It is every bit as important as learning to solve mathematical problems and to read and write fluently in a native language.”

So she is offering the following:

Music Classes

Alice uses her knowledge as a teacher, parent, musician and artist to create stories that intertwine all of her experiences into fanciful mysteries for young readers.  Alice’s books are enjoyed by music teachers and their students, math artistry enthusiasts,  Oregon history buffs, musical and non-musical families and early readers.

Her current stories take place in Sound City where all her musical characters live. Each one embraces a central human quality that readers can relate to. Story themes revolve around such things as

–  Being in too much of a hurry can create the same problems you were trying to avoid – like being late!

–  Having fun is totally cool and sets the tone for the best kind of learning!

–  learning that l.oving friendships are supportive and helpful whether you are troubled or enjoying a special event like a birthday party or a trip to the moon!

– How very important it is and to what lengths we will go to understand who we are!

– Sticking with a problem until it is resolved leads to many happy conclusions – and new learning!

– Don’t give up!


Earlier in her career, Alice produced her first book, When Buildings Speak. It was the summation of a journey throughout Oregon, where she lives now. During this time, Alice chose 20 buildings to illustrate. She explored their historical roots and influences dating from 1850 – 1950. Some of which are quite fascinating including almost getting put in jail for taking photographs of the Oregon governor’s English Tudor mansion.

Alice’s second book, Musical Tales, is an expression of her experience as a musician.  She laughed all the way to the end of writing it. These musical characters are hilarious, warm and brave.  They experience the lessons of what it means to be a true friend.

Wrong Notes and Leaps of Imagination –  both of these books are collections of quotes and sayings aimed at helping  1) to ease a performer’s tensions about making mistakes and 2) to inspire creativity in everyone. These two books are the result of a collaboration with master music and Taketina teacher, Mary Kogen, who was Alice’s teacher in her college days!

The Case of the Flying Note, The Secret at Willow Wail,  Adventures on a Blue Moon are the first three books in the Detective Reed Mystery series written for children (8 – 11). These books entertain and teach. Take your pick! Entertaining stories for young readers that support  the learning of music. These qualities make these stories fun and educational with the emphasis on fun.  Alice’s goal was to create stories the would invite children into the world of music. And to not view that art as something separate and isolated.

“Music is part of who we are! So let’s make it accessible for our children through the art of story making.”

          GET a book here:

Store 3