Meet Jim McKay, Our Featured Volunteer from Philadelphia!

18 Feb

Meet Jim McKay, Our Featured Volunteer from Philadelphia!

Get to know our volunteers!

What Virtual Program do you volunteer with? I volunteer for the WXPN MOC Philadelphia Program

How long have you been volunteering with Musicians On Call? I’ve been volunteering for ten years or so

Are you a volunteer guide or musician? Musician

What is your favorite song to play for patients? I have to name two: Prelude from 1st Solo Cello Suite, by Bach, and Somewhere Over the Rainbow

Which demographic do you love playing for and why? I love playing for adults of all ages, especially those who have not heard classical guitar before

Do you have any livestreams or other performances coming up? I also play electric guitar, and my alt-country rock band is playing two gigs in February

What is your occupation outside of MOC? I’m a professor at the University of Pennsylvania, where I do research and teach

Do you have any hidden talents? To my colleagues at Penn, my guitar playing is my hidden talent! Otherwise, I’d have to say bodysurfing, lol! And I did pole vault in high school!

What is your story? What connects you with music and why do you volunteer with MOC? I’ve had a deep love for guitar playing since I was a teenager, both classical and electric. What moves me so much about the classical guitar is the chance to play beautiful music written by extraordinary composers like Bach, Debussy, and Barrios. It connects me with something that is timeless and universal. I volunteer because it is a privilege to share this amazing music with people who are in need of comfort and appreciate the uplift that live music can provide.

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