Country Christmas spirit in Elmira

[From File]

There isn’t any snow on the ground yet, and most people still have their Christmas lights packed up in the basement, but The Larry Mercey Trio is getting the holiday season started in Elmira.

With a show Nov. 25 at Gale Presbyterian Church, the trio, along with special guests the Amish Ambassadors and yodeler Naomi Bristow, will be putting on a show for those who want to get into the holiday spirit.

Larry Mercey says he can’t wait to get into Gale Presbyterian and start singing for the audience.

“The show should be like us coming into your living room to do some singing for you,” he said. “It is an acoustic sound. We have two guitars, a bass and vocals. We are all about the vocals. We’re not a rock band, but more of a traditional country group with some gospel.”

He says the guests are a great complement to the Larry Mercey Trio repertoire. Along with Mercey, the group includes George Lonsbury (guitar and vocals) and Al Alderson (bass and vocals). They’ve been together as a trio since 2004.

The Amish Ambassadors are a comedy duo, poking a bit of fun at the Amish lifestyle, made up of Stan Iutzi and his cousin Mary Lou Ruby Jonas as The Missus.

“We have the Amish Ambassadors, which I am sure people will enjoy. The last show we did with them was in a barn, and this one is in a church, so they may have to watch their jokes a little bit,” he laughed.

At Just 19 years of age, Bristow has been yodeling for nearly a decade, which says something for her talent, says Mercey, who’s been performing with her for eight years.

“She has won a number of awards for her yodeling, and she has been doing this for quite a while,” shared Mercey.

“She is a great singer and a very nice girl. She will definitely be doing yodeling songs.”

Some of those awards include the Havelock Fans Choice Award and the Western Music Association’s Youth Yodeler of the Year.

It has been quite a few years since Mercey has performed in Elmira. The last time, he was asked to come take the stage at Gore Park by his old friend, the late Lynn Russwurm. With family in town, and being a former resident himself, Mercey says it is a bit like a homecoming with the Gale Presbyterian show.

“It was a great time, we had a lot of people come out and listen,” said Mercey about his last show in Elmira. “I have always wanted to come back and play in Elmira. I certainly have a soft spot for the town.”

He says that fans of the Mercey Brothers, the group with which he’s most associated, will get to hear some of the classics, as well as a few solo songs he wrote and recorded.

“We want to get people in the Christmas spirit and we hope they enjoy the guests as well,” he said. “We will definitely do some Mercey Brothers songs. As an artist, you work to become an act like that, where you have your own material and you know that people expect you to sing some of those.”

The show starts at 7 p.m. on Nov. 25. For tickets, call the Gale Presbyterian Church office at 519-669-2852.


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