Kelly Joe Phelps
After spending a long time as a jazz player, this singer-songwriter/guitarist made a sharp turn towards his own evolving vision of Delta Blues-style slide guitar playing. Playing an acoustic guitar on his lap and fretting the notes with a steel bar, he plays dazzlingly fluid lines, full of cascading hammered notes and funky syncopation. Add to this Phelps' warm, low vocals and you have one of the more unique stylists playing today. He began his recording career reinterpreting songs from the blues canon, such as "See That My Grave is Kept Clean," but he has since grown into a challenging, idiosyncratic songwriter in his own right.