Album Preview: Lizz Wright, Shadow

Written by | New Releases, News

Vocalist Lizz Wright explores a newfound artistic freedom through a classic recording that spans her 20-year career since the release of her debut album, “Salt,” on Verve Records in 2003. This album signifies Wright’s studio debut under her label, Blues & Greens Records, following the label’s initial release in 2022, “Holding Space,” a live recording from a 2018 show in Berlin.

Blues & Greens Records stands as the newly established label for Lizz Wright, crafted to pioneer a music business model that empowers artists to cultivate sustainable and fulfilling careers. The mission of Blues & Greens revolves around reinstating fundamental humanity in the music industry, prioritizing wellness and fostering sound business practices. Artists under Blues & Greens will possess ownership of their masters, creative works, and images. A repository of assets will be granted to artists, preserving all rights under their names, empowering them to shape and lead their distinctive narratives.

With this album Wright, a recognized vocalist and songwriter, delivers a resonant reflection of the cultural fabric of America. Her music transcends historical scripts and social divides, offering a message of love and deep humanity. Wright’s musical repertoire fosters a collective sense of belonging for the listener, embracing the beauty of reality. Grounded in tradition, her songs provide a perpetual sense of familiarity, creating a space where one can always feel at home. The backgrond for this release draws inspiration from her Southern upbringing in Georgia, where she served as the musical director in her father’s small church. Her initial exposure to music through call-and-response singing within the church congregation set the stage for her journey through the Great American Songbook, eventually establishing her as a cherished international artist.

Lizz Wright’s early career saw her gaining national recognition at the age of 22 with a touring concert tribute to Billie Holiday. By 23, she signed with Verve Records, and her debut album, “Salt,” reached the top of Billboard’s contemporary jazz charts. Subsequent years included albums released under Universal Music Group and Concord, such as “Freedom & Surrender” (2016) and “Grace” (2017). Blues & Greens Records, her latest label venture, aims to establish a music business model fostering sustainable artist careers, prioritizing wellness and ethical practices. Under Blues & Greens, artists retain ownership of their masters, creative works, and images, receiving a vault of assets to shape their narratives. Wright’s album “Shadow” features five original tracks and unique renditions of songs by various artists.

For the album “Shadow,” Lizz Wright convened her musical collaborators in Chicago, enlisting renowned engineer Ryan Freeland, known for his work on her previous album “Grace” and Bonnie Raitt’s GRAMMY Award-winning album “Just Like That.” The production was led by Chris Bruce, a longtime collaborator and music director for artists such as Seal, Bettye LaVette, and Sheryl Crow. The ensemble included various musicians such as Adam Levy, Lynne Earls, Justin Hicks, Morley Kamen, Jack DeBoe, Ben Zwerin, Kenny Banks Sr., Glenn Patscha, Deantoni Parks, Rashaan Carter, violinist Trina Basu, Carnatic violinist Arun Ramamurthy, harpist Brandee Younger, composer Hanna Benn, and Chicago-based string players.

Free from A&R pressures and genre constraints imposed by record labels, Wright crafted “Shadow” according to her artistic vision. The album, characterized by acoustic guitar and raw emotion, presents Wright in a gentle and triumphant manner. Reflecting on the album, Wright shared her personal journey of loss, particularly the passing of her grandmother Martha, whose love provided the strength for her musical career. “Shadow” emerged as a result of navigating grief and celebrating the enduring impact of love in the face of loss and uncertainty.

With Shadow, Wright nurtures a sound and feel of America that is solely her own. Shadow exposes an unbridled confidence and courage in Wright.

The first two singles from the album “Sweet Feeling,” “Root of Mercy,” and “Your Love” have already been released and can be heard on all streaming platforms and the full album is set for release in April 2024. To support the release, Liz will embark on an extensive tour throughout the United States and Europe. Tour dates are listed below.

March 5, Paradiso – Amsterdam, Netherlands
March 7, Tivoli Vredenburg – Utrecht, Netherlands
March 8, Muziekcentrum Frits Philips – Eindhoven, Netherlands
March 10, Kino SC – Zagreb, Croatia
March 11, Columbia Theater – Berlin, Germany
March 13, Ostrow Cultural Center – Ostrów Wielkopolski, Poland
March 14, Synagoga Pod Bialym Bocianem – Wroclaw, Poland
March 15, Cadogan Hall – London, United Kingdom

April 5 – 7, Brennan’s Bar & The Carlyle Room – Washington, DC
April 10, City Winery – Philadelphia, PA
April 11, Jimmy’s Jazz & Blues Club – Portsmouth, NH
April 12, City Winery – Boston, MA
April 14, City Winery – New York City
April 27, Koerner Hall – Toronto, ON
April 28, Space – Evanston, IL\

More Information can be found at Lizz Write’s Website.

Last modified: February 16, 2024