Jelly Roll Kings: Rockin’ the Juke Joint Down

Earwig founder Michael Frank heard this dynamic trio in Clarksdale , Mississippi , in 1975 and got so captivated that he returned...


  • Earwig founder Michael Frank heard this dynamic trio in Clarksdale , Mississippi , in 1975 and got so captivated that he returned in 1978 to record them as the first record on Earwig. This recording, done in Memphis at the famed Ardent Studios, has been the most popular on the label, and has been considered a classic of raw Mississippi juke joint blues. The much anticipated release of this LP in 1979 led to the group’s first European tour, where they were a huge hit at the first Blues Estafette in the Netherlands . It marked the debut of Big Jack Johnson as a vocalist and lead guitarist, and led to a resurgence in the band’s career, collectively and individually.

    “…The Kings cook with their own brand of gas, simmering rock, pop and c & w influences into the basic broth of authentic funk to create a piping hot Southern gumbo… a driving selection of instrumental and vocal burners…”
    – Downbeat

    “(Big Jack Johnson’s) vocals are raw, and he plays raunchy, thunderous guitar… (Frank Frost) blows harmonica with a flair that recalls Sonny Boy Williamson… (drummer Sam Carr) gets the groove going…”
    – The Seattle Rocket

    1. I Didn’t Know 3:56
    2. Road of Love 4:29
    3. Soul Love 3:05
    4. Mighty Long Time 3:58
    5. Honeydrippin’ Boogie 4:45
    6. Something On Your Mind 4:30
    7. Jelly Roll King 2:16
    8. Catfish Blues 3:58
    9. Cleo’s Back 4:33
    10. Slop Jar Blues 2:13
    11. Jelly Roll Stroll 2:26
    12. Have Mercy Baby 4:07
    13. Sunshine Twist (You Are My Sunshine) 2:20
    14. Just A Dream (Just A Feeling) 5:07
    15. Burnt Biscuits 4:3
  • Release Date: November 23, 1979

    © P 1978 Earwig Music Company, Inc.
    Recording Dates – November 8, 1978 & April 1979
    Frank Frost – Farfisa organ, harmonica and vocals Big Jack Johnson – guitar and vocals Sam Carr – drums
    Recording Engineers – Ron Capone and John Hamden, Ardent Studios, Memphis Tennessee
    Producer – Michael Robert Frank, CEO, Earwig Music Company, Inc.
    Consulting Producers – Bob Koester, owner of Delmark Records and Jim O’Neal co–founder of Living Blues Magazine
    Album Cover Photography by Ivey Gladin