Grammy Award winning guitarist Albert Lee grew up in Blackheath, southeast London, where his father, who played piano and accordion, began teaching Lee when he was only seven. He became enraptured with the sound of American rock-a-billy after listening to people such as Buddy Holly, Elvis and Jerry Lee Lewis and switched from piano to guitar. By the time he was 16, he had dropped out of school and was working fulltime as a guitarist for a number of British artists, eventually playing lead guitar for Chris Farlowe and the Thunderbirds. When visiting American country stars such as George Hamilton IV and Skeeter Davis came to tour in England, Lee was often hired as their guitarist. At the beginning of the 1970’s, Albert Lee headed for America and there began a relationship with the Everly Brothers that was to last decades. His work as a session guitarist led to offers to play for all a variety of performers and musical styles from Jackson Browne to Bo Diddley to Herbie Mann. Lee has toured with people such as Eric Clapton, Rodney Crowell, Ricky Skaggs and Emmylou Harris. The winner of Guitar Magazine’s Best Country Guitarist for five years in a row, Albert Lee continues to tour regularly.
Ken Rockburn caught up with Albert Lee in Santa Monica, California.
A veteran journalist and broadcaster widely recognized for his irreverent and entertaining interview and presentation style, Ken is an award-winning journalist with almost 40 years of experience on radio and television. He first joined CPAC in 2001 as host of Talk Politics which ran for eight seasons. He returned to CPAC in 2010 to host Rockburn Presents. Prior to joining CPAC, Ken hosted CBC Radio’s All In a Day, CBC TV Ottawa’s Rockburn and Company and was news director at CHEZ-FM in Ottawa.