We're lucky to have a lot of remarkably talented artists deliver impressive performances here at World Cafe (ok, humblebrag). But our whole team was pretty floored by Lizz Wright. The combination of Wright and her band (Bobby Ray Sparks on organ, Brannen Temple on drums and Chris McQueen on guitar) was effortless and elevated, in a way that's hard to articulate in words, but you can experience in a session here.
Wright and Co. performed songs from her latest release Grace – it's an album of covers that includes gospel standards, and tunes made famous by Nina Simone, Glen Campbell, Sister Rosetta Tharpe, Bob Dylan and more. The collection was curated by Wright and producer Joe Henry – a World Cafe alum, singer-songwriter and producer extraodinaire.
We chose to air Lizz Wright's session on Martin Luther King Day because of the way she speaks about humanity and the ways she performs feels very much in line with some of the ways we think about Dr. King – grounded in faith, believing in people and in equality, moving towards the greater good without force, and with unwavering grace.