Yesterday, December 8th was the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, the day when Mary is honored "in the first instance of her conception, by a singular privilege and grace granted by God, in view of the merits of Jesus Christ, the Saviour of the human race was preserved exempt from all stain of original sin."
Since yesterday was a Sunday, the feast is transferred to the next day.
During the season of Advent, we also think of the Annunciation, when the angel Gabriel visits Mary, telling her is to be the mother of Jesus.
Joseph J. McGrath (1889-1968) was an American composer of sacred music. A Fellow of the American Guild of Organists, he was Organist and Choir Master of the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Syracuse, New York for forty years. He was a teacher of harmony and composition at Syracuse University and a lecturer at the Catholic University Summer School.
"Postlude on 'Praise to the Holiest'" strikes me as a particularly "odd" piece. It was published by McLaughlin & Reilly Co. of Boston in 1963 - just before all the major changes and upheavals in the Roman Catholic Church turned everything upside down, and almost instantly destroyed many fine musical traditions.
His setting of "Daily, daily, sing to Mary" comes from his "Pro Ecclesia," a collection of paraphrases on traditional hymn tunes. It is the second in the set of six.
The style is straightforward, and would make an excellent church work, but probably a bit "flat" for a recital work.
McGrath was an important musician in his day, but those days of the RC Church are long gone, and I doubt if we'll see a revival of his music.
The score is attached below, as well as photo (young) of McGrath, and several of the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Syracuse.