“While shepherds watched their flocks by night, all seated on the ground, the angel of the Lord came down and glory shown around. ‘Fear not,’ said he, for mighty dread had seized their troubled minds, ‘good tidings of great joy I bring to you and all mankind.'” This carol has always been one of my favorites as far as the words go, but I’ve never cared for the music — it seems too bouncy and upbeat just at the point where there should be dread and trouble. For that reason I’ll be interested in anybody’s reaction to this alternate musical setting by Frank Moore Jeffrey (1855-1942) which was printed in the Juvenile Instructor in December, 1915.
I haven’t found much personal detail about the life of Frank Moore Jeffrey. He wasn’t LDS. He seems to have dabbled at least a little in multiple art forms — poetry and painting as well as musical composition. A number of his hymns and Christmas carols appear(ed) in Methodist songbooks.