by Lizz WrightLizz Wright


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Lizz Wright was bound to cross paths with modern roots music specialist Joe Henry. It happened in late 2016, when the singer and the producer got to work on the follow-up to the former's Freedom & Surrender. Wright co-wrote the majority of the songs for that 2015 set. For this one, Henry selected enough songs to fill seven albums, from which Wright narrowed it down to this mix of contemporary and traditional folk, gospel, blues, jazz, and soul. The result is nourishing, a lulling yet ringing affirmation of Wright's deeply rooted connection to the South and its music. Although it was recorded in Hollywood -- with Henry's associates among the core and ancillary musicians -- and consists primarily of covers, the album is Southern through and through, and as personal as any of Wright's previous recordings, with resolute faith, enduring romantic devotion, and earthly gratitude among the prominent themes. On the surface, the album's geographic connection is most evident in "Southern Nights," lucid basking compared to Allen Toussaint's hazy original version and Glen Campbell's jovial remake, and in a softly glowing version of standard "Stars Fell on Alabama." Whether the source material dates back to the early 1930s (Thomas A. Dorsey's "Singing in My Soul") or early 2017 (Rose Cousins' "Grace," from a Henry-produced session), it fits together and translates across the timeline. As usual, Wright is always in complete control of her voice, even during the three songs that feature an eight-member gospel choir. At the very end, Wright links again with Maia Sharp -- the two wrote "Real Life Painting" for Freedom & Surrender -- for "All the Way Here," the lone original. It's one of Wright's most serene performances: "Took a cold call from deep inside/The voice was sweet and sanctified." Just like the record, then.

Product Details

Release Date: 09/15/2017
Label: Concord Records
UPC: 0888072028654
catalogNumber: 00482
Rank: 176022

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Lizz Wright   Primary Artist,Vocals
Marc Ribot   Electric Guitar,Background Vocals
Chris Bruce   Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar
David Piltch   Upright Bass
Marvin Sewell   Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar
Patrick Warren   Keyboards
Jay Bellerose   Percussion,Drums
Sheree-Monique   Alto
Artia Lockett   Soprano
Kenny Banks   Piano,Hammond Organ
Kevin O'Hara   Tenor (Vocal)
Cathy Rollins   Soprano
Angela Jenifer   Alto
Ted Jenifer   Tenor (Vocal)
Valorie Mack   Soprano

Technical Credits

Ray Charles   Composer
Bob Dylan   Composer
Joe Henry   Producer
Michael Hausman   Management
k.d. lang   Composer
Mitchell Parish   Composer
Maia Sharp   Composer
Allen Toussaint   Composer
Rev. Thomas A. Dorsey   Composer
Ryan Freeland   Engineer
Frank Perkins   Composer
Mark Erelli   Composer
Lizz Wright   Composer
Allison Russell   Composer
Cortez Franklin   Composer
Carrie Smith   Art Direction
Rose Cousins   Composer
Kenny Banks   Musical Director

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