Steve Earle squeeze Allison Moorer has traveled different roads in her career that have neither defined nor excluded her. Mockingbird, Moorer’s new release, is a covers album that draws material from an all female line-up, brushing shoulders with country stars (June Carter, Jessi Colter), blues singers (Ma Rainey, Nina Simone) and rockers (Patti Smith). There’s the obligatory Joni Mitchell nod as well.

Moorer’s voice triumphs on the title track and on Smith's “Dancing Barefoot,” but she occasionally dips into tune choices that may have been better left to the originals. (“Ring of Fire” doesn’t exactly resonate the same way.)

Moorer has one of those Sunday morning, coffee-sipping warm towels of a voice, and while she manages to bring something of her own to “Both Sides Now” and “Orphan Train,” she might want to reconsider “I Want a Little Sugar in my Bowl,” a song Nikka Costa magically made even more spectacular on a 2007 covers album for KCRW.

Grade: B

Mockingbird is currently available.