It’s somewhat criminal that Kevin McCormick is not better known. An avid reader and fan of The Imaginative Conservative, a father of four, and a dedicated husband and member of his small Texas parish, McCormick has been fighting for the good, the true, and the beautiful all of his adult life.
I can vouch for this personally, as I’ve known Kevin—quite well—since we first met in the fall of 1986, our freshman year at the University of Notre Dame. We each lived in Europe from July 1987 to July 1988, and we traveled extensively together. Now, I serve as the godfather of one of his daughters, and he of my oldest son.
Kevin is a man of integrity, and I’ve never seen him do a single thing half way. If he does something, he does it well. Very well. In addition to the stoic work ethic, he also possesses taste, something that so sadly lacking in much of our modern world.
At age 46, Kevin’s resume is quite impressive. He has released two albums of classical guitar music (Solo Guitar and Americas), one of Americana (all performed on an 1844 Martin Guitar that traveled with a soldier in the Mexican War and the War between the States), Songs of the Martin, and two art rock cds, With the Coming of Evening and Squall. He has written a full Catholic Mass, he has composed a long piece for the San Antonio Children’s Choir, and he has written a stunning piece for classical guitar and symphony. Several of his compositions have been published, and he’s won a number of awards for his music.
He’s also an accomplished writer, having published with several Catholic periodicals (St. Austin Review and Catholic World Report, to name two) and on various blogs. Not only does he review music, art, and literature, but he and his wife have a special devotion to pro-life causes and natural family planning. Our senior year of college, Kevin won the award for “Best American College Poet” for a poem he wrote about the music and ideas of the Estonian composer, Arvo Part.
He is a talented man.
When Winston made a call for all contributors of The Imaginative Conservative to offer gift suggestions, I immediately thought of Kevin’s brand new CD, In Dulci Jubilo, released on the Feast of St. Cecilia (November 22) of this year. As you know, St. Cecilia is the patroness of culture and music. Kevin could not have picked a better day for the release.
At forty-six minutes over 14 tracks, In Dulci Jubilo is an absolute gem. The best description I can think of for this album is: immaculate. Combine Kevin’s demand for excellence, his innate perfectionism, his delicate but rather manly classical guitar playing, and his devotion to the Christian faith and sacred music, and you have a match made in heaven. The subtile of the CD is “Songs of Christmas for Guitar and Voice.” Kevin plays all of the guitar, and he and his oldest daughter, Rachel provide the voice. His oldest daughter, Rachel, possesses her father’s sense of taste and the voice of angel. I realize this last claim might sound cliche, but it’s also quite true.
The fourteen songs include: In Dulci Jubilo; Ave Maria (two different versions); The First Noel; Panis Angelicus; Silent Night; and What Child is This.
In Dulci Jubilo truly is 46 minutes of heaven for those of us adore the Incarnation.
Winston Elliott, in all of his genius, has provided a forum for all things conservative. Buying Kevin’s music is the conservative equivalent of “buying local.” I want to support our own. And, Kevin is not only one of our own, he’s one of our best.
Books mentioned in this essay may be found in The Imaginative Conservative Bookstore.