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Sunday 23 May 2021

Roll Away the Stone


 2021 Charity Shop Purchases 16 - Kelly Joe Phelps - Roll Away the Stone

Prior to our recent visit to Kingussie I had one album by Kelly Joe Phelps namely Sky Like a Broken Clock. I now have three

KJP (as I shall call him to save on the old typing) started out as a jazz bassist before  what he describes as his conversion to the blues after listening to acoustic blues masters such as Mississippi Fred McDowall and Robert Pete Wilson.

Roll Away the Stone from 1997 on the Rykodisc label is his second album. AllMusic is complementary saying that   his interpretations of classic blues songs show increased imagination. Although it's based in classic blues, this music doesn't sound ancient -- it sounds vital and alive, like any great music should.

There is  distinct gospel blues feel to the album which makes it appropriate for the Sunday slot .Not that there is anything wrong with his own compositions but I have gone for two covers The first of the two is When the Roll is Called Up Yonder written by James Milton Black an American composer of hymns,choir leader and Sunday school teacher. The second one See That My Grave is Kept Clean comes from the pen of  the great Blind Lemon Jefferson.

Kelly Joe Phelps - When the Roll is Called Up Yonder

Kelly Joe Phelps -See That My Grave is Kept Clean


  1. Listening to these two tracks I was wondering how on earth someone could let go of that album? Maybe the owner had died and their grieving partner could not bear to have any reminders of them in the house? It's an album I would pay good money for.....or ask a long-standing friend to send him a copy...