Ain't No Grave: The Life And Legacy Of Brother Claude Ely
Recorded interviews of over 1,000 people in the Appalachian Mountains lay the foundation for this 360-page biography detailing the life of Brother Claude Ely, the religious singer-songwriter and Pentecostal-Holiness preacher from southwestern Virginia. Coined as the King Recording label's "Gospel Ranger," Brother Claude Ely was the first Pentecostal Holiness recording artist to be signed to a major recording label for strictly sacred music. Receiving notoriety for his song, "There Ain't No Grave (Gonna Hold My Body Down)," Ely's musical style and spiritual influence still exist today among both secular and sacred music enthusiasts. Many Hollywood entertainers and musical artists have acknowledged their admiration and fascination for Brother Claude Ely's music and ministry. Artists influenced by Brother Claude Ely's music include Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash and others. Robert Duvall's self-produced movie entitled The Apostle also integrated Brother Claude Ely's music on its soundtrack. Ely pastored various churches in Kentucky, Virginia and the Cincinnati, Ohio area and hosted a radio program entitled "The Gospel Ranger Show" which aired across the southeastern portion of the United States. Many of Ely's religious followers and numerous admirers still exist today in the Appalachian Mountains, proving that the country preacher's legacy remains. While visiting a London record shop in 2001, Macel Ely II heard a familiar voice playing over the speakers. He learned that it was indeed the powerful chanting of his great-uncle and was amazed at the magnitude of the impact his music still maintained on people worldwide. He then embarked on what would become a 9-year journey to discover the true story of Brother Claude Ely as well as to investigate his legacy. Brother Claude Ely passed along a musical and spiritual influence which can still be heard today like a mountain echo in those long, winding hollows and impoverished coal fields. Authored by Brother Claude Ely's nephew, Macel Ely II, the biography is supplemented by 290 sepia photographs along with a CD featuring rare and electrifying audio recordings of Pentecostal worship services in the mountains of Kentucky and Virginia accompanied by a fiery sermon preached by Brother Claude Ely himself. 360-page hardcover book with dust jacket in shrinkwrap -- CD stored in back of book. Book measurements: 9.5 x 7 inches and 1.25 inches thick.