Shawn Lee: A Cool Rock ‘n Roll Dad


Sex, drugs, and rock ‘n roll, right? Wrong — for Shawn Lee, anyway. The hip rock musician is a devoted husband, dad, and vegan. Married for 13 years, the American ex-pat living in London takes his kids to school five days a week and is an avid drinker of soy milk to fuel his busy life recording and producing albums and film scores. And his music is both prolific and acclaimed: since 2000, he has released nearly two dozen albums, contributed to movie soundtracks such as Ocean’s 11, created music for brands such as Louis Vuitton and Reece’s Peanut Butter Cups, and scored soundtracks for games such as Rockstar’s Bully.

He is currently touring to support his latest collaboration with musician AM, the album La Musique Numerique — an eclectic blend of “electro soul” that received 4.5 stars (out of 5) from AllMusic.

The rock ‘n roll life takes its toll. He makes no bones about the fact that going on tour makes him miss his children and makes him feel guilty for “turning my wife into a single parent.” The demands of recording and touring made him miss his daughter Mela’s first birthday.

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The Innovative Sound of AM & Shawn Lee

The rock and pop music industry is alive and well. The business of music as we once knew it might be dead, but musicians continue to thrive and innovate — if you’ll let them. Case in point: today AM & Shawn Lee released La Musique Numerique, a striking blend of rock and electronica that received a four-star (out of five) rating on Allmusic. Their new single (“Two Times”) and video were featured USA Today, which describes La Musique Numerique as “a blissful experience from start to finish.” I met AM at a concert in 2010, and we ended up creating an innovative co-branding relationship for AM and agency Razorfish, where I was vice president of marketing at the time. I’ve maintained a relationship with AM in my current role as senior vice president of marketing at iCrossing. I continue to be impressed not only by his music but by how he works. For instance, as Billboard and Mashable have noted, AM & Shawn Lee typically build tracks by sharing their music online across multiple studios (AM is based in Los Angeles; Lee in London) without collaborating face to face. Moreover, they boldly combine retro moog-synth sounds with contemporary dance and rock.
So here’s my challenge: check them out. Give them a fair listen. If you don’t like them on first listen, try them again — remember, sometimes your ears need time to get accustomed to fresh music. See them on tour (here’s where you can find them — and you won’t need to fork over hundreds of dollars to experience their music as you would with the Rolling Stones). Their future is in your hands.