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Lee Ann Womack takes an introspective path to the Grammy Awards
Lee Ann Womack takes an introspective path to the Grammy Awards

Lee Ann Womack, the Grammy-winning country singer, says her latest album grew out of a question: What kind of music would she make if she weren't concerned with marketing or radio play or what her peers are doing? On "The Way I'm Livin'," her first record since 2008, the answer is frank, small-scale songs about people in tough spots: the lonely drinker killing a quart by herself in "Send It on Down," or the woman in "Chances Are" who "took the wrong turn every time I had a turn to take." The sound is darker and more introspective than the high-powered party tunes Nashville pumps out these days. And it's less polished than...

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