12 Songs, 59 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

The legendary Abbey Lincoln closed out her recording career with the elegantly poignant Abbey Sings Abbey, an album filled with bittersweet wisdom. Lincoln reconsiders some of her best compositions here, giving them an eclectic spin that ranges beyond jazz into acoustic folk and country terrain. With wistful dignity and a touch of wry humor, she gives “Should’ve Been,” “Bird Alone” and “The World Is Falling Down” a nuanced treatment that brings out the aches and ironies in each line. She balances the brooding spirit of “Down Here Below” with brighter tunes like “The Merry Dancer.” Lincoln’s vocals are rich and potent, flowing with the rhythmic subtleties that always distinguished her work. Her backup combo plays with taste and imagination, with Gil Goldstein’s accordion and Scott Colley’s standup bass adding especially luminous colors. Between the hopeful self-liberation of “Throw t Away” and the clear-eyed autobiography of “Being Me,” Lincoln bares her heart with courage and grace. It makes for a haunting farewell statement by an artist who never gave less than her all.

EDITORS’ NOTES

The legendary Abbey Lincoln closed out her recording career with the elegantly poignant Abbey Sings Abbey, an album filled with bittersweet wisdom. Lincoln reconsiders some of her best compositions here, giving them an eclectic spin that ranges beyond jazz into acoustic folk and country terrain. With wistful dignity and a touch of wry humor, she gives “Should’ve Been,” “Bird Alone” and “The World Is Falling Down” a nuanced treatment that brings out the aches and ironies in each line. She balances the brooding spirit of “Down Here Below” with brighter tunes like “The Merry Dancer.” Lincoln’s vocals are rich and potent, flowing with the rhythmic subtleties that always distinguished her work. Her backup combo plays with taste and imagination, with Gil Goldstein’s accordion and Scott Colley’s standup bass adding especially luminous colors. Between the hopeful self-liberation of “Throw t Away” and the clear-eyed autobiography of “Being Me,” Lincoln bares her heart with courage and grace. It makes for a haunting farewell statement by an artist who never gave less than her all.

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