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Benjamin Michael "Ben" Lee (born 11 September 1978 in Sydneymarker, Australia) is an ARIA Award winning musician and actor. Lee began his career as a musician at the age of 14 with the Sydneymarker band Noise Addict, but focused on his solo career when the band broke up. He appeared as the protagonist in the Australian film The Rage in Placid Lake (2003). To date, Lee has released seven solo studio albums.

Career

Noise Addict

Lee's musical career began in 1993 with the band Noise Addict, who were signed to Steve Pavlovic's independent label Fellaheen Records, on the strength of a self-produced and distributed four-track demo recorded in Lee's bedroom. Pavlovic's connections brought the band to the attention of Sonic Youth's Thurston Moore and Beastie Boys' Mike D, both of whom released the band's material in the USmarker. The group put out several releases on the Beasties' Grand Royal Records. These including the acoustic Young and Jaded EP in 1994, which contained Lee's Evan Dando tribute, "I Wish I Was Him." In 1995, Grand Royal released the band's only full length, the Brad Wood produced Meet the Real You. Noise Addict made a music video for the song "16", toured with Sebadoh, but then broke up. Lee was also briefly a member of the alternative act Gerling. In 2009 Lee recorded a new Noise Addict album, "It was Never about the Audience," with a new lineup; Lou Barlow and Lara Meyerratken.

Solo career

Lee's solo career started at the age of 16, while he was still in Noise Addict. He began recording his first solo album, Grandpaw Would, in both Sydneymarker and Chicagomarker with producer Brad Wood. This was followed by the 1997 album, Something to Remember Me By, also produced by Wood. Lee was then featured in 1998's Theres Something About Mary soundtrack, with the song How To Survive A Broken Heart. 1999's Breathing Tornados, released on Pavlovic's new label Modular, marked a new direction for Lee as he introduced synthesizers and increased instrumentation into his sound. The album was a success in Australia, earning Lee ARIA Award nominations for Best Male Artist and Album Of The Year. The album's first single, "Cigarettes Will Kill You", was also nominated for Single Of The Year and finished second in that year's Triple J Hottest 100.

Lee's fourth album, hey you. yes you., was released in 2002. The first single from the album, "Something Borrowed, Something Blue", reached number 67 on the ARIA Charts and number 22 on the 2002's Triple J Hottest 100. The second single, "Running with Scissors", peaked at number 82 on the ARIA charts.

In late 2004, Lee left Steve Pavlovic's Modular Recordings and started up his own record label, Ten Fingers. The first release on the label was the single, "Gamble Everything for Love", followed by the album, Awake Is the New Sleep in February 2005, which went double platinum in Australia. A defining release in his career, the album showcased a much brighter, positive side of Lee's personality, in contrast to his previous darker musings. Awake Is the New Sleep received several nominations for the 2005 Australian Recording Industry Association (ARIA) awards, and Lee won Best Male Artist, Best Independent Release, and Single Of The Year for "Catch My Disease", which Lee wrote with Mcgowan Southworth. "Catch My Disease" also went to #2 on the 2005 Triple J Hottest 100. In addition, the song was featured on the soundtrack to the 2005 film, Just Friends and Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo, as well as the soundtrack to the television series, Grey's Anatomy, Hidden Palms and Scrubs. In 2006 it was used in a television commercial for Dell Computers. On 26 March 2006 Lee performed "We're All in This Together" from Awake Is the New Sleep at the closing ceremony of the 2006 Commonwealth Games. The single for "We're All in This Together" was released on the 8 April 2006. The CD includes cover versions of the song by Pony Up, Holidays on Ice and Gelbison. "We're All in This Together" is being used in commercials for Kohl's (2008), Coca Cola (Remixed Australian Summer Series Ads in 2007), the South Australian Government (2006), the Salvation Army Red Shield Appeal (2007) and Telus Mobility's "My Faves" (2007).

Ben Lee released his sixth album, Ripe, on 18 September 2007 with Benji Madden and Mandy Moore making appearances. Mandy Moore sung a light-hearted, 50's style duet with Lee called "Birds and Bees". "Mandy was very sweet and did her best Olivia Newton-John for me. I'm really psyched about this recording," Lee says. Madden helped out with some backing vocals, along with US band Rooney and Sara Watkins from the band Nickel Creek. Benmont Tench, keyboardist from Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers also contributed. The song "American Television" from the album was used in a VH1 advertisement for Flavor of Love 3 and the song "Ripe" appeared in an episode of One Tree Hill (Season 5 Episode 2).

In 2007, Ben Lee did a cover of Crosby, Stills & Nash's "Our House" for Landmarks on The DL.

On 6 February 2009, Lee released his seventh studio album, The Rebirth of Venus.

Personal life

Lee was educated at Moriah Collegemarker in Sydney's eastern suburbs. Lee was raised in a Jewish household. However, he does not consider himself religious.

Lee dated Claire Danes for several years, but their relationship ended in 2003. Lee married actress Ione Skye on December 28, 2008, in a Hindu wedding ceremony in India. Their first child together, Goldie Priya Lee, was born on September 24, 2009.

Lee was nominated as PETA's World's Sexiest Vegetarian.

Discography

Albums



EPs and singles



  • From The Rebirth of Venus
    • "I Love Pop Music" (2009) #86 Australia


Awards and nominations

Awards



Nominations



References

  1. The Sydney Sun Herald, "The many layers of Mr. Lee", 2 September 2007
  2. A Wedding in India for Actress Ione Skye People.com, 11 January 2009
  3. The 2008 World's Sexiest Vegetarians Areā€¦ // Out There // peta2


External links




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