Albert Lee; Thursday, January 16

Albert Lee
Thursday, January 16
Kuumbwa Jazz Center

“One of the finest guitar players who ever walked this earth…” – Vince Gill

When Eric Clapton calls you “the greatest guitar player in the world,” you know you’re on to something good. And this is exactly what he said about famed guitar slinger Albert Lee. Lee first became known during the ’60s for his recordings with American rock ‘n’ roll icons Bo Diddley and Jerry Lee Lewis. His exemplary work in the ’70s and ’80s with Emmylou Harris and Clapton cemented his reputation as a premier guitar hero. Now celebrating his 70th birthday, he shows no signs of slowing down. Already on his schedule for the coming year is a massive tribute show in London, a documentary film and a new album. It’s shaping up to be another banner year for the legendary axe-slinger.

Born in 1943, Albert Lee grew up in the Blackheath suburb of London. Although Lee’s first instrument was piano, he took up the guitar when rock ‘n’ roll became popular in the mid-’50s. At the age of 16, he was working fulltime as a professional musician. Initially playing rock ‘n’ roll and r&b, he found his real love in American country music. By the early ’70s, he had established himself as a formidable session musician, recording with many of his heroes.

In 1974, Lee relocated to Los Angeles to work with The Crickets, the late Buddy Holly’s back up band. Two years later, he joined Emmylou Harris’ Hot Band, an alliance that has lasted several decades. In 1978, Lee began touring with Eric Clapton, a five-year stint that put him into the stratosphere of guitar superstardom. His next major gig was for the Everly Brothers’ long awaited reunion and from 1983 to 2003 Lee was their musical director and guitarist.  In 2002, he received a Grammy award for Best Country Instrumental Performance on the Earl Scruggs & Friends album. He won the same category in 2008 for Cluster Pluck with Brad Paisley.  He is also a five-time consecutive winner for Guitar Player magazine’s Best Country Guitarist. 

On playing the Kuumbwa stage, Lee says: “I’ve been through [Santa Cruz] a couple of times.  In the seventies I played the Catalyst with Rodney Crowell and Emmylou.  It was a good club, but I’m looking forward to [Kuumbwa]…I’ve had a UK band for many years, but this US band is a relatively new venture for me.  I’ve lived in California for almost 40 years but most of my work has taken me to Europe.  I’m hoping to change that imbalance!”  We second that motion.

Albert Lee


DATE: Thursday, January 16, 2014
VENUE: Kuumbwa Jazz Center
ADDRESS: 320 Cedar St, Santa Cruz, CA 95060
TIME: 7:00 PM
PRICE: $25/Adv $30/Door, No Comps
TICKETS: Logos Books & Records, 1117 Pacific Ave, Santa Cruz (831) 427-5100 and online at:
MORE INFO: or 831-427-2227

Media contact:
Connie Lindell
(818) 736-5575

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