NEWS FROM KELLY JOE
May 1, 2013

Hello folks,

Firstly, thank you all so very much for the kindness, patience, well-wishings, and helpful suggestions that have been rolling in since January, when I was forced to take a lengthy breather due to an unexpected and surprising ulnar nerve issue in my right arm. Fortunately, I’m able to tell you that thru both rest and therapy the healing is coming around, sensation is returning, and my picking hand is starting to work like normal again. It’ll be another few months yet before I can get back to work, but come this summertime I’ll start getting out there again with both hands working fine, and picking a couple of very lonely guitars!

Secondly, apologies to both fans and promoters for ending up with so many cancelled shows during the first half of this year. I hope to make as many of those up as I can over the course of the rest of this year and the top of next year. I’m just now starting to be able to look toward re-scheduling, so over the next few months I’ll be posting new tour dates and news as it comes in. It may take a while, it may be a slower process than you or I wish it were, but we’ll get it fixed up sooner or later, one way or the other. Sorry for all of this, folks.

Lastly, I do have some immediate tour news to report; in September I’ll be making up quite a few of those U.K. tour dates I had to cancel back in January. I’ll be over from September 5th thru the 29th, so you can have a look at the new posted dates and see if something fits your home base or schedule. I’m also teaching a workshop and performing a concert at the Healdsburg Guitar Festival in Healdsburg, California on August 11th, just north of Santa Rosa. There will be a lot of wonderful luthiers there and some great players performing as well, so that ought to be fantastic fun. I’m going to try to get more dates plugged in while I’m down that way, so keep your eyes on the schedule and perhaps we’ll see one another somewhere under the California sun!

Thank you again, really and truly, for extending such kindness my way. I’m humbled by it, inspired by it, and deeply grateful for it. I hope to repay the kindness to each of you with the gift of song and the healing waters of music, and soon at that. Take good care until then, and I’ll do the same.

Peace and be well,
Kelly Joe

 

NEW VIDEO: "HARD TIME THEY NEVER GO AWAY"

Check out a live video of "Hard Time They Never Go Away," a track from the latest album "Brother Sinner & The Whale" recorded in Berkeley, California on October 17th, 2012.

 

BROTHER SINNER AND THE WHALE

ORDER THE NEW CD DIRECTLY FROM BLACK HEN MUSIC
PURCHASE ALL OTHER KELLY JOE RELEASES AT KELLY JOE'S OFFICIAL STORE

Click here for the "Brother Sinner & The Whale" lyrics pages and the Bible verses that correspond with the songs themselves, including the instrumentals.

Hello Everyone,

The new record Brother Sinner And The Whale is out now! This record is going to be a fun one to roll along with; it’s got a lot of light streaming thru the windows, and all the doors are wide open. A dozen songs full, half of which are played on a National slide guitar, and the other half on a Martin D-35 (a black Johnny Cash model at that!), ten of ‘em sung, and a pair of instrumentals as well. Really looking forward to getting this out to you folks.

By the way; here’s a link to a new KJP interview in ‘No Depression’ that describes in far more detail what the record is all about.

Beyond that, friends, the tour calendar continues to fill out, and will continue to do so. Check back often to see if I’ve managed to find my way near enough to you so that we’ll get to share some of this new music. Black Hen Music has also started a facebook page for ol’ KJP, which they run and interact with, so thanks to them for continuing to spread the word. They’ve posted two videos of the new songs, too, so you can get a head start on what the record is going to sound like. Here’s the link.

Thanks again, all of you, for the continuing support, for coming out to the shows, for sharing this music of mine with those around you in both the earth-world and the cyber-streets. Say hello when you can, take good care, find peace.

Best of everything,

Kelly Joe Phelps

 

NEW TRACK "TALKING TO JEHOVA" RELEASED

Visit the Press section to read a review and listen to the first song released from 'Brother Sinner And The Whale' here!

 

UPDATE FROM KELLY JOE

Hi Folks,
Excited to say I’m back on the road touring solo again! Fleming Artists and I have teamed back up, and they will be booking my shows throughout the U.S. and Canada, as well as Australia. We started working together back in 1997, so we have a long, successful, and happy road behind us with the bright future right up ahead. Looking forward to seeing you all out there.

I’ve been booked back in to the Montreal Jazz Festival this year, which I’ve always loved performing at. I’ve also been booked into The International Guitar Festival in northern Quebec, which is going to be loaded with great guitar players from around the world, so you guitar fans can check that out, too. And a return to the Capilano College concert series in Vancouver, B.C. which is another of my long-standing favorites. Europe is being looked at now, as well, so maybe I’ll see you in Paris or Amsterdam   Keep your eyes on the tour schedule, find something that works for you, and come out and say hello.

I’ll be recording a new solo record up in B.C. during the first week of April with my long-time friend and advice master Steve Dawson, and it will be coming out on his label “Black Hen” somewhere around the end of August/middle of September. It’s going to be just me playing and singing and, for you slide fans, I’m going to be doing some of that as well. I was hoping I’d be re-inspired at some point to pick the slide back up, and thankfully I have been. The guitars are happy, and so am I.

Lastly, I’ve got three gigs coming up in March with a new ace musical friend of mine, Cahalen Morrison. We’ll be playing at the Green Frog in Bellngham, WA, the Tractor Tavern in Ballard, and the Alberta Rose Theater in Portland. This is going to be a fun and wild string-ride, so you Home-In-The-Northwest fans might want to get the babysitter and the gas money together and come along with us. We’re really looking forward to these shows, grins and all.

Take good care, and thanks so much for the continuing help and support.

Now let’s go,
Kelly Joe Phelps

 

WESTERN BELL
Western Bell is Kelly Joe's 2009 release on the label Black Hen. This is the first all-solo instrumental album including 6 string and 12 string guitars as well as a return to lap-slide on three pieces.

 

WHAT THE PRESS HAS TO SAY ABOUT WESTERN BELL

Western Bell is among the most unique acoustic guitar recordings out there today. Cryptic, hushed, confoundingly beautiful, this is a brilliant, deeply moving work by an artist who has created a new language on the acoustic guitar, culled from the discontinued speech fragments of American music's own mysterious past.” -Thom Jurek, AllMusicGuide
read more->

“His eighth album of solo acoustic guitar improvisation should be enough to land him status in the company of legends, if he isn’t there already.  Like a hero of the high plains, roaming nameless to wherever God deems his services necessary, Phelps speaks directly to your soul. If that isn’t the stuff of legends, I don’t know what is.” -Filmore Mescalito Holmes, PopMatters
read more->

“On this latest opus he dispenses with the oblique wordplay that marks his usual output and concentrates instead on his considerable skill with six strings and piece of wood. The results, while typically idiosyncratic, are as remarkable and offbeat as you'd expect from a man of such proven talent.” -Chris Jones, BBC
read more->

“One might call it "free blues" as it seems firmly rooted in Delta blues, but is filled with harmonic and rhythmic twists and turns. Every guitarist alive should own this album.” -David Reid, The Intelligencer
read more->

 
MISSISSIPPI SHEIKS TRIBUTE ALBUM
"Things 'Bout Comin' My Way" is the title of the Mississippi Sheiks Tribute album released on October 20th on Black Hen Music. The Mississippi Sheiks are a highly under-appreciated country blues group that recorded throughout the 1930's. Featuring all new performances of the fantastic material of the Sheiks, the tribute covers everything from traditional to avant-garde takes on their classic repertoire. Along with Kelly Joe, the lineup for the tribute also includes John Hammond, Bill Frisell, Geoff Muldaur, Madeleine Peyroux, Bruce Cockburn, Jim Byrnes, The Carolina Chocolate Drops, Ndidi Onukwulu, Del Rey, Bob Brozman, Robin Holcomb, The North Mississippi Allstars, Oh Susanna with Van Dyke Parks, Danny Barnes, The Sojourners, and Steve Dawson.
 
LIVE VIDEOS FROM BERKELEY, CA  FILMED FEBRUARY 21st, 2009
     

WATCH "COUNTRY BLUES"

WATCH "BEGGAR'S OIL"

WATCH "WINDOW GRIN"
Flash 8 required
Check out videos for the songs "Country Blues" from the record 'Shine Eyed Mister Zen,' "Beggar's Oil" from the record 'Sky Like a Broken Clock,' and "Window Grin" from the record 'Slingshot Professionals' recorded live at the Freight & Salvage in Berkeley, California on February 21st, 2009.
 
VIDEOS FROM BERKELEY, CA  01/24/08

WATCH VIDEO
Flash 8 required
  Watch a video for the song "Tight to the Jar" and "Plumb Line" from the record 'Tunesmith Retrofit' recorded live at the Freight & Salvage in Berkeley, California on January 24th, 2008.    
 
POP!TECH VIDEO
  Watch Kelly Joe performing a few tunes from his visit to Pop!Tech last year.    
 
VIDEO & INTERVIEW FROM OPB
Kelly Joe stopped by OPB (Oregon Public Broadcasting Studios.. Oregon's NPR Station) in Portland, Oregon to play some songs and talks about his early performing career as a jazz bassist, improvisation, moving to fingerstyle and slide guitar, welcoming the muse, and finding his voice over the years as a singer. Check it out here!