“Roll, Jordan, Roll (I)”


"My brother sitting on the tree of life And he heard when Jordan roll, Roll, Jordan, Roll, Jordan, Roll, Jordan, Roll.""O preacher, you oughta been there." "My sister sitting on the tree of life." "He comes, he comes, the Judge severe." Etc.


The texts of this piece differ significantly; the verse lines quoted above are typical but by no means universal. There seem to have been adaptions for particular situations. The line "Roll, Jordan, Roll" is, of course, characteristic. - RBW


  • Elizabeth Bivens, "Roll, Jordan, Roll" (on HandMeDown2)
  • Fisk University Jubilee Quartet, "Roll Jordan Roll" (Victor 16453, 1910; rec. 1909); "Roll Jordon [sic] Roll" (CYL: Edison [Amb.] 980, rec. 1912)
  • Lt. Jim Europe's Singing Serenaders, "Roll Jordan Roll" (Pathe 22105, 1919) (Pathe 020851, 1923 [as Jim Europe's Singing Serenaders])
  • Tuskegee Institute Singers, "Roll, Jordan Roll" (Victor 18237, 1917; rec. 1915)


  1. BrownIII 631, "Roll, Jordan, Roll" (2 short texts plus a fragment)
  2. Scott-BoA, pp.195-196 , "Roll, Jordan, Roll" (1 text, 1 tune)
  3. Lomax-FSNA 240, "Roll, Jordan, Roll"; 241, "Roll, Jordan, Roll" (2 texts, 2 tunes)
  4. Silber-FSWB, p. 369, "Roll, Jordan, Roll" (1 text)
  5. Roud #6697
  6. BI, SBoA195


Author: unknown
Earliest date: 1867
Found in: US(SE)