Cynthia Lin
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Cynthia Lin


Band Folk Acoustic


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""Blue and Borderlined" by Cynthia Lin"

July 25, 2005
Review by Amy Lotsberg, Producer of Collected Sounds

Once again, an EP that I wish was twice as long!

Cynthia Lin has a nice sound. It's almost classic folky ala Joni, Joan and the like. She makes nice use of the minor chords and notes.

Her voice soars beautifully over the nice finger picking style guitar playing. She also uses some nice background vocals.

These are nice well-written folk songs and the production is very professional as well.

If you like smooth pleasing folky songs with lovely vocals this is a good pick.

There's only 5 songs and since I like them all, I won't go with my standard "stand out songs" here. They're really all good. - Collected Sounds


Feb 6, 2005
Review by Nelson

Singer/Songwriter Cynthia Lin has released her debut CD titled "Blue and Borderlined" for all to hear. She blends a primarily guiar-folk rock base with some jazz vocal stylings and comes up with listenable CD. Vocally Lin has been called a Joni Mitchell crossed with Ella Fitzgerald. She has quite a smooth vocal range that fans of artists such as Vienna Teng will enjoy. Musically, the songs on this 5 track EP have a sense of quiet and loneliness, but not in a sad way. It's the type of music that you can listen to while by yourself at home and still come away with a smile. - AA Risings

"Trading in Wall Street, Lin '99 releases debut solo album"

Feb 3, 2005
by Christine Miranda

Like many Princeton students, Cynthia Lin '99 majored in economics and joined the business world after graduation. Unlike her coworkers, Lin picked up a guitar and snuck off to auditions whenever she could. After a year of working, and after the "novelty" of the job wore off, she realized that music was her true vocation.

Now she has put out her debut album, "Blue and Borderlined," funded by her earnings that year. The music mixes jazz with a sort of coffee-shop feel and exudes originality. Lin, however, like all artists, wrestled for a while before she got to this point.

Lin did not resolve to become an artist immediately for a number of reasons. As a Princeton student she participated in the Tigerlillies, Disiac, and a tour with the Triangle Club. However Lin felt unsure about a future in music. When commenting on Princeton's influence on her career choice, she confessed, "To be honest, I felt discouraged."

Lin noticed that people at Princeton were very determined in their decision to commit themselves to the arts. Early on, Lin did not feel the same level of readiness right away and struggled with her curiosity in several majors.

Now Lin has come to realize that art is "more about finding yourself." The singer/songwriter has done just that. With nothing but a guitar and her smooth voice she produces beautiful and, more importantly, honest music. She says the best part of this type of career is "the ability to express myself" and the emotions of others as well.

Drawing inspiration from Joni Mitchell and Jeff Buckley, Lin seems to have developed a sweet tell-it-how-it-is style. Hints of Ella Fitzgerald and jazz influence can be gleaned from "My Song." Fiona Apple serves as a major inspiration for the artist as well — "even though she is younger than me," jokes Lin.

Not only does she draw her inspiration from big influences in music, but from the daily newspaper as well. In the early stages of her songwriting she used her own experiences, as many other artists do at the beginning, she says. Taking the newspaper and writing about a person's feelings in a situation has provided Lin with a "new pathway" for her work.

Drawing from sources like the newspaper and actual personal experiences, Lin cannot help but be honest. She tells it like it is in the song "I'm Shy," in which she expresses the fear so many people have of communicating their true feelings sometimes.

Aside from being honest, Lin considers herself "self-aware" and open-minded. She says "[even] economics guides me — I think about opportunity costs." She lives as an artist, but she remains practical, ready to take the right risks.

But if Lin wasn't an artist, she could also envision herself being comfortable in a boardroom: "I'd be some crazy female CEO type," Lin said. She added that if she was part of a business, she would try to rule it, because "I am a control freak."

And with such control over her career, where does Lin see herself in the future? "I want to continue as an independent artist for as long as I can," Lin said. Because of her work in business she was able to fund her own debut. She plans to put a new record out each year. - Daily Princetonian

"Cynthia Lin - Blue and Borderlined"

May 2005
by J-Sin, editor of

Her voice can soar while her light acoustic guitar play would draw a modest crowd at even the biggest coffeehouses. She’s folk-rock’s latest Virginian and has just wrapped up a gig at North by Northeast Festival in Toronto. Lyrically she lets folks in with her intimate style and anyone having a craving for the poetry of a lithe Asian folk-ster should tune in now. -


EP Blue and Borderlined, released Jan 2005
EP Doppelganger, released Dec 2007



About Cynthia

Though Chicago-born singer/songwriter Cynthia Lin spent much of her youth on the stage - her first award-winning performance was at age six, and included a rendition of "Are you sleeping?" in Mandarin Chinese - it wasn't until her college years that she found her vocal freedom, when she discovered two very different artists: Ella Fitzgerald and Joni Mitchell. Embracing their range and agility, Cynthia learned the art of interpretation from Ella; from Joni, she learned that pop songs could be bittersweet, poetic, and emotionally complex.
After graduating from Princeton University with a degree in economics and attempting a nine-to-five career in the Washington DC software industry, Cynthia returned to the stage with a batch of original songs written on the acoustic guitar. Her unique blend of jazz and folk, as well as her heartfelt lyrics and personable stage presence, began to draw a very loyal fanbase, and garnered recognition and airplay from the and local radio station Z104.
Since releasing the Blue and Borderlined EP in January of 2005, Cynthia has become a regular on the regional touring circuit, performing at respected venues including DC's IOTA Club, Philly's World Cafe Live, New York's Rockwood Music Hall, and Chicago's Uncommon Ground. Cynthia has supported major acts including Vienna Teng and Emm Gryner, and was featured on NPR’s Open Mic series. Cynthia's second EP Doppelganger was released independently in December 2007, and features eclectic arrangements and a poignant cover of Cyndi Lauper's Time After Time. The new album has been named one of the Top 5 Asian American albums of 2007 by

"Jazz with a coffee-shop feel...exudes originality" -- Daily Princetonian

"Lin's music stylings hint at past greats, yet sound fresh with a distinct charm." - Adam Simkin,