Lizz Wright is well acquainted with the storytelling power of a journey. Her music, rooted in the gospel truths and rustic byways of this country, could be seen as a sustained meditation on movement: not just the flow of bodies in rapturous rhythm, but also the trajectories that mark a life story.
For this episode of Jazz Night in America, she takes us on the road via an audio diary in an exploration of her own roots, from Appalachia, to Atlanta to Southern Georgia. She also digs into some of the songs from her recent album, Grace, in concert at the Variety Playhouse in Atlanta.
"I just kind of circled my whole lineage and just tracked what people were saying and doing," Wright says. "I felt like I needed to get the pulse of the South and my people in it."