Shawn Lee and AM – Celestial Electric
If you are an average music listener, the name Shawn Lee may sound unfamiliar to you, maybe even mundane and average. Shawn Lee isn’t really an exciting stage name. It isn’t really the type of name you would expect to shine and flash in lights. In fact, it’s a name that flies quietly under the radar. So why are we even talking about this Shawn Lee dude?
If you’re a music expert or an industry veteran who knows the ins and outs of who is producing who, what studio musicians are on what albums, who the best engineers are, etc, then you most definitely heard the name Shawn Lee already and you already know how prolific he is. I fall somewhere closer to the side of the music enthusiast, not the music expert. About a month ago I stumbled upon a track called “Kiss The Sky” by Shawn Lee and Nino Moschella. I did a little digging to find out more about him and basically opened up pandoras box. One things brought me to the next; single after single, album after album, side project after side project. “Who the fuck is this guy?” I thought to myself.
A simple search on wikipedia will give you an overview that includes his long career as both a multi-instrumentalist and producer. Highlights include work with artists like The Dust Brothers, Jeff Buckley, Thievery Corporation, Blundetto and The Ping Pong Orchestra. Also worth mentioning is his work on the Tonight Show and his many scores for TV, Film and video games including Ocean Thirteen The Break Up, CSI Miami, Desperate Housewives and Ugly Betty. The list goes on and on.
It doesn’t take much reading to realize that that Shawn Lee is probably one of the hardest working and most talented musician/producers that most average people will never know about. Well, maybe and maybe not. Today Shawn Lee released Celestial Electric with LA artist AM, another musician with a solo career and an insanely impressive resume of music for film and TV that includes over 100 songs featured on both the small and big screen.
Listening to Celestial Electric, you can hear elements of TV theme songs. I’m sure it wasn’t intentional but as both of these artists have a such extensive experience making music for entertainment, there are obviously going to be some underlying elements the seep through. Celestial Electric is adorned with syncopated basslines, reverberated vocals doubled by horns, orchestral instruments and wahs that reference classic tv themes from The Love Boat, Space Odyssey and Starsky and Hutch – but hold on, hold on. hold on; although those things can be cliche, this album is anything but that. If Celestial Electric rested on those elements alone, I can see where you would suspect it being a bit on the lame side. Luckily, on top of that, the album is intertwined with soul, dub and latin groves, hip hop inspired beats and AM’s signature ethereal vocal style that delivers an electro-soul-urban-groove lovechild that is as unique as it is fluid.
Together Shawn Lee and AM have created an interplanetary synthadelic journey that secured it’s spot on my “Best of the Year” list. Also included below are some of Shawn Lee’s previous tracks . . . Check out this stuff and then give these guys the love they deserve.
AM & Shawn Lee – City Boy
AM & Shawn Lee – Lonely Life
AM & Shawn Lee – Dark Into Light
Shawn Lee (feat. Michael Leonhart) – “Ethio”
Shawn Lee’s Ping Pong Orchestra Vs. Jurassic 5 – Kiss The Golden Sky Mashup
Blundetto – Nautilus