Cora is from Houston, Texas. She began playing in the 9th grade. After graduating high school as the valedictorian of her senior class she found opportunities to perform with The Washington Ballet, The Washington Symphony Orchestra, The American University Orchestra, The Howard University Marching Band, Concert Band & Percussion and Jazz Ensemble as well as opportunities to perform with Marvin Stamm, Yusef Lateef, Greg Osby, Donald Byrd, Grady Tate, and Larry Ridley. She relocated to Los Angeles and won Guitar Center's 2003 Annual National Drum-Off competition. Prince attended one of her performances with Frank McComb and took an interest in Cora. Upon her return from a Japanese tour, Prince put together a Band with Cora on drums and her husband, Joshua Dunham playing bass, (Officially known as the "After Party" house band) for performances following Major Events like The Grammy's, Academy Awards/Oscars and NAACP Image Awards.