Reaction Records

'Mallets' McCoy

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From the 2011 album Bang The Bars

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Listen to "BarBanger"

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Malcolm McCoy, aka Mallets, was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba and raised in Regina, Saskatchewan. Mallets began playing percussion at the age of nine. He progressed through the Regina Lions Junior Band and the music program at his high school, Campbell Collegiate, soon developing a passion for playing mallet percussion and jazz. Ultimately, Mallets’ interest in music led him to enroll in the Jazz Studies program at McGill University, graduating with distinction in 1999.

While at McGill, Mallets had the opportunity to study with some of the finest jazz educators in the country including Gordon Foote, Kevin Dean, Jan Jarcyzk, Chris McCann, Andre White, Michel Lambert and Dave Laing. He also attended the prestigious summer jazz workshop presented by the Banff Centre for the Arts in 1997, where he performed with Canadian jazz greats Hugh Fraser, Don Thompson and Kenny Wheeler. In the spring of 2006, Mallets completed his Master’s in Jazz Studies at McGill University where he studied jazz percussion, improvisation and composition.

I make music by banging on pieces of wood with sticks.
~ Malcolm 'Mallets' McCoy

In January 2011, Mallets released his debut CD, “Bang The Bars”. Featuring his quintet, the CD contains an exciting collection of Mallets’ original compositions, featuring himself and his band. The release of this CD was followed by a twenty-day tour of Western Canada, performing to enthusiastic, capacity audiences. During March that year, Mallets was the recipient of a fellowship from the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and attended the “Betty Carter Jazz Ahead” residency in Washington, D.C. Along with twenty other distinguished young jazz artists, McCoy was featured with such jazz icons as Terence Blanchard, Carmen Lundy, Winard Harper, Curtis Fuller and John Clayton.

Mallets’ quintet performed at the 2008 edition of the Montreal International Jazz Festival and was nominated for the General Motors Grand Prix du Festival (awarded to the most outstanding Canadian group). From 2009 until 2011, Mallets toured North America, Asia and Europe with the high-energy, critically acclaimed music production troupe “Barrage”. Featuring a cast of seven world-class fiddlers and a four-piece band, this dynamic show featured high-energy music and fiddle traditions from around the world set to upbeat choreography and movement.

McCoy is currently based in Toronto, Ontario where he maintains a busy performing and teaching schedule across Canada.