Lizz Wright

Grace (CON­CORD)

The Observer - The New Review - - RELEASES - Neil Spencer

Over five al­bums 37-year-old Wright has emerged as the doyenne of cur­rent jazz singers, able to in­habit and trans­form songs from dis­parate gen­res. Grace is her homage to her na­tive south (she grew up a min­is­ter’s daugh­ter in Ge­or­gia), though its songs have di­verse sources – Allen Tous­saint’s South­ern Nights and the an­tique Stars Fell on Alabama sit along­side kd laing and Bob Dy­lan. Wright and pro­ducer Joe Henry give it all a sanc­ti­fied feel, how­ever, burst­ing into full gospel choir for a ti­tle track, writ­ten as a torch song (by Rose Cousins, another Henry client) but here trans­formed into a plea for hu­man­ity. A po­tent brew.

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