MCKEE

Arranger: H. T. Burleigh

Harry T. Burleigh (b. Erie, PA, 1866; d. Stamford, CT, 1949) began his musical career as a choirboy in St. Paul's Cathedral, Erie, Pennsylvania. He also studied at the National Conservatory of Music, New York City, where he was befriended by Antonín Dvořák and, according to tradition, provided Dvořák with some African American musical themes that became part of Dvořák's New World Symphony. Burleigh composed at least two hundred works but is most remem­bered for his vocal solo arrangements of African American spirituals. In 1944 Burleigh was honored as a Fellow of the Hymn Society in the United States and Canada. Bert Polman Go to person page >

Tune Information

Title: MCKEE
Arranger: H. T. Burleigh (1939)
Meter: 8.6.8.6
Incipit: 15555 77656 11511
Key: B♭ Major
Source: African-American spiritual
Copyright: Public Domain

Notes

MC KEE has an interesting history. According to a letter from Charles V. Stanford (PHH 512) to Samuel Coleridge-Taylor (who arranged the tune for piano in his Twenty-Four Negro Melodies, 1905), MC KEE was originally an Irish tune taken to the United States and adapted by African American slaves. It became associated with the spiritual "I Know the Angels Done Changed My Name," which appeared in J. B. T. Marsh's The Story of the Jubilee Singers with their Songs (1876).

Harry T. Burleigh (b. Erie, PA, 1866; d. Stamford, CT, 1949) arranged the tune to fit Dunkerley's text in 1939. As a setting for that text, the tune was published in The Hymnal 1940. Burleigh named the tune after Elmer M. Mc Kee, rector of St. George's Episcopal Church, New York, where Burleigh was the baritone soloist from 1894-1946.

Burleigh began his musical career as a choirboy in St. Paul's Cathedral, Erie, Pennsylvania. He also studied at the National Conservatory of Music, New York City, where he was befriended by Anton Dvorak and, according to tradition, provided Dvorak with some African American musical themes that became part of Dvorak's New World Symphony. Burleigh composed at least two hundred works but is most remembered for his vocal solo arrangements of African American spirituals. In 1944 Burleigh Was honored as a Fellow of the Hymn Society in the United States and Canada.

Sing stanzas 1, 2, and 5 in unison, the others in harmony. The instruction in The Hymnal 1940 for this tune is still helpful: sing this hymn "with dignity."

--Psalter Hymnal Handbook, 1988

Arrangements

Organ Solo

  • The Complete Organist Volume 2: Accessible Service Music for the Church Year
    Composer/Editors Carson P. Cooman; David P. Dahl
    Published By: Lorenz Publishing Company (2017) pp. 134
  • Oxford Hymn Settings for Organists Volume 6 Autumn Festivals: 37 Original Pieces on hymns for World Communion, Reformation / The Church, Harvest, All Saints, All Souls, Remembrance, Christ the King, and Thanksgiving
    Composer/Editors Rebecca Groom Te Velde; David Blackwell; Mathew H. Corl
    Published By: Oxford University Press (2016) pp. 81
  • Easy Organ Library Volume 55
    Composer/Editors Johannes Brahms; Douglas E. Wagner
    Published By: Lorenz Publishing Company (2014) pp. 5
  • Easy Hymn Settings for Organ Volume 3
    Composer/Editor Ronald A. Nelson
    Published By: Augsburg Fortress (2013) pp. 12
  • The Organist Volume 117 Number 1 March April 2013: The Service Music Companion for Church Organists
    Composer/Editors Douglas E. Wagner; Johannes Brahms
    Published By: Lorenz Publishing Company (2013) pp. 5
  • The Organist in Season: Autumn
    Composer/Editor Gilbert M. Martin
    Published By: The Sacred Music Press (2005) pp. 24
  • PedalPoint Volume 20 Number 4 July August September 2001: Church Music and Study Helps for Pianists and Organists
    Composer/Editors Sharron Lyon; Nancy Lyons Smith
    Published By: The Sunday School Board of the Southern Baptist Convention (2001) pp. 17
  • Wood Works for Organ Book 2
    Composer/Editor Dale Wood
    Published By: The Sacred Music Press (1989) pp. 11
  • The Concordia Hymn Prelude Series Volume 32: General: MC - More
    Composer/Editors Richard Hillert; Harvey E. Hahn
    Published By: Concordia Publishing House (1985) pp. 8
  • Fourteen Hymn Preludes
    Composer/Editor Austin Cole Lovelace
    Published By: Augsburg Publishing House (1982) pp. 24
  • The Organ Portfolio Volume 34 Number 5 June 1971: A Bi-Monthly Anthology for Church Organists
    Composer/Editors Lani Smith; Johannes Brahms
    Published By: Lorenz Publishing Company (1971) pp. 14
  • Preludes and Offertories for the Organ
    Composer/Editors Homer Whitford; Johannes Brahms
    Published By: Harold Flammer Music Publishers Incorporated (1961) pp. 4

Piano Solo

  • Heaven's Song: Hymns of Eternal Promise
    Composer/Editor Victor Labenske
    Published By: Lillenas Publishing Company (2009) pp. 26
  • The Church Pianist Volume 11 Number 3 January February 1995: The Pianist's Companion for the Church Year
    Composer/Editors Hugh S. Livingston, Jr.; Johannes Brahms
    Published By: Lorenz Publishing Company (1995) pp. 6

Piano and Organ Duet

  • Lord of Hosts: Organ - Piano Duets
    Composer/Editor Ron Boud
    Published By: Broadman Press (1985) pp. 10

Harmonizations, Introductions, Descants, Intonations

  • Final Stanzas Volume 2: Hymn Settings for Organ and Descanting Instrument
    Composer/Editor David Maxwell
    Published By: Concordia Publishing House (2011) pp. 10
  • Many and Great: Introductions and Accompaniments for Global Hymns for Organ
    Composer/Editor John A. Ferguson
    Published By: MorningStar Music Publishers, Inc. (2008) pp. 18, 20
  • Introductions and Alternate Accompaniments for Organ Volume 7: Evangelical Lutheran Worship, Hymns 640 - 704
    Composer/Editors Norma Aamodt-Nelson; Mark Weiler
    Published By: Augsburg Fortress (2007) pp. 650
  • Introductions and Alternate Accompaniments for Piano Volume 7: Evangelical Lutheran Worship, Hymns 640 - 704
    Composer/Editors Norma Aamodt-Nelson; Mark Weiler
    Published By: Augsburg Fortress (2007) pp. 650
  • The Art of Hymn Playing 2nd edition: 250 Preludes Introductions Free Accompaniments & Alternate Harmonizations
    Composer/Editor Charles Callahan
    Published By: MorningStar Music Publishers, Inc. (2006) pp. 78
  • Pull Out the Stops! Volume II: Congregational Song Accompaniments for Organ
    Composer/Editors Norma Aamodt-Nelson; Mark Weiler
    Published By: Augsburg Fortress (2001) pp. 116
  • The Creative Use of the Organ in Worship
    Composer/Editor Hal H. Hopson
    Published By: Hope Publishing Company (2000) pp. 88
  • Festive Hymn Introductions: 37 Settings for Organ
    Composer/Editor Dale Wood
    Published By: The Sacred Music Press (1997) pp. 18
  • Ninety Easy Hymn Accompaniments: For Keyboard
    Composer/Editor Margaret Mealy
    Published By: GIA Publications, Inc. (1997) pp. 54
  • Seven Hymn Improvisations and Free Accompaniments: Set 2
    Composer/Editor Michael A. Burkhardt
    Published By: MorningStar Music Publishers, Inc. (1993) pp. 10
  • Music Supplement: The United Methodist Hymnal
    Composer/Editor Gary Alan Smith
    Published By: Abingdon Press (1991) pp. 231
  • Free Harmonizations of Hymn Tunes: Volume II
    Composer/Editor D. DeWitt Wasson
    Published By: Hinshaw Music, Inc. (1986) pp. 81
  • Free Harmonizations of Hymn Tunes: By Fifty American Composers
    Composer/Editor D. DeWitt Wasson
    Published By: Hinshaw Music, Inc. (1984) pp. 15

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