Mark Clairmont | MuskokaTODAY.com

GRAVENHURST — Celebrate the 12 days of Christmas with a dozen carols recently recorded recently in a informal concert at Trinity United Church.

Danny McCoy, their multi-talented minister of music, got out his fake book and “improvised” on the Bechstein grand piano, using the sheet music in the video “just for reference and to spark more ideas.”

And the result is the Christmas Carol Piano Collection, a casual festive holiday treat you can listen to and enjoy for an hour — and more.

It’s a very Merry Christmas concert.

Maestro McCoy recorded it on his 43rd birthday — Nov. 20, two weeks ago tonight — with the technical assistance of the church vice chair Mike Church (his real name) who video-recorded the “one-takes.”

The duo shared the cutting and editing credits.

Usually at this time of year McCoy and his choir are getting ready for Christmas with songs in their hearts, in their minds and on their lips.

There’s also Penny Varney’s pageant.

But these are unusual times that can’t go on without some sense of normalcy. And this fills the bill for stay-at-home listeners and lovers Joy to the World.

McCoy — who is a cross between Elton John, Liberace, Victor Borge, Beethoven, Mozart and many other musical influences — tells MuskokaTODAY.com “the Carol Collection was done as an act of goodwill during these trying times.”

Hear it, see it and share it here at: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLdhrguHS3Ykt_o3UNLlFbSvN13dKxCbTk

Fans of the music and McCoy’s pleasing personality and showmanship can find this new play list on Trinity’s YouTube Channel: go to YouTube and search for Trinity United Gravenhurst.

Each carol is an individual track. The playable play list includes most of the standards and your favourites played in McCoy’s engaging, effervescent, smiling selfie-style and brilliant musicianship.

There’s Joy to the World, Carol of the Bells, We 3 Kings, What Child is This?, The First Noel, Good King Wenceslas, O Little Town of Bethlehem and Silent Night.

And for good measures O’ Christmas Tree, Jingle Bells, the 12 Days of Christmas and of course We Wish You A Merry Christmas.

McCoy says “give thanks by checking out more great videos on their YouTube channel and by liking, commenting and subscribing. Then please share it or recommend it to a friend.”

McCoy says Trinity, which is looking for a new minister after their popular minister Rev. Allan Link moved to the East Coast — with his Mountie wife who took a promotion with the RCMP — says the church has “a lot of exciting online endeavours planned for the new year.

“So — stay tunes,” he says with a laugh in email.

LOL without the smiling emoji.

In the liner notes, he says: “Merry Christmas. We hope you all have a Merry Christmas. Times are a-changing. Let’s help usher in an era with heart at its centre. Thanks for listening.”

Minister of music Danny McCoy’s improvised versions of classic Christmas carols are a musical tour de force by the engaging piano maestro and for whom he tolls the bells this pandemic year.


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