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Brother Sinner & The Whale

Kelly Joe Phelps

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iTunes Review

There's long been a spiritual subtext to the work of maverick acoustic bluesman Kelly Joe Phelps. Brother Sinner & the Whale places his renewed Christian faith front and center for an album’s worth of original tunes (plus one traditional number). Admirers will find Phelps' slide work and fingerpicking as virtuosic as ever, infused with jazzy shadings and an innate sense of melody. His plaintive, road-seasoned vocals are in fine form. “Talkin’ to Jehova,” “Goodbye to Sorrow," and “The Holy Spirit Flood” resonate with the sense of awe and gratitude found in classic American gospel. Phelps offers a Job-like confession in “Pilgrim’s Reach” and discovers his own dark night of the soul in “Sometimes a Drifter.” Whatever his confession, his playing is impeccable, whether he’s serving up elegant fret embroideries in “Spit Me Out of the Whale” or letting his bottleneck do the talking in “Brother Pilgrim.” Producer Steve Dawson keeps these guitar/vocal performances pristine, making Brother Sinner & the Whale an intimate testimony, as well as a sterling example of folk-blues musicianship.

Customer Reviews

The slide is back!

KJP is so good...
"Down to the Praying Ground" -Absolutely Killer!

Soul food

Take the good news, the blues and a hungry soul and you have this find album. Here the artist has tapped into the divine and the depths of faith surface through the voice and slide. The sparse sound moves the listener with an intimacy and presence that's much needed. Get away from everyone, lock yourself in your secret place and listen to this album until you to come back changed.

Oh My Goodness!!!

This is an AMAZING album!! The talent of KJP is just ridiculous! There are not many people that can put out a CD with just them and an instrument, KJP is for sure one of them. Get this CD you won't regret it! BTW the lyrics on the CD are very very good also.


Born: October 5, 1959 in Sumner, WA

Genre: Blues

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Vancouver, Washington-based guitarist, singer, and songwriter Kelly Joe Phelps continues to expand the parameters of modern blues through his strong commitment to literary songs and his expressive yet simple guitar stylings. While casual listeners may call Phelps a bluesman, his playing is so fluid, dexterous, and improvised he obviously has the soul of a jazz musician. Phelps was raised in a music-loving household in Sumner, Washington, near Tacoma. The son of Seventh Day Adventist parents, Phelps'...
Full Bio

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