UoG’s spotlight on David Lee

Photo of David Lee by Paul Watkins.

PhD candidate and ICASP GRA David Lee looks at how improvisation brings musicians together

Books, more books, and a double bass: That’s what confronts a visitor to David Lee’s office in Massey Hall in early September. A PhD student in the School of English and Theatre Studies (SETS), Lee is working on freeing some space by winnowing through a prof’s accumulated volumes lining shelves and stacked on tables.

One thing he’s not looking to purge is that David Lee-sized instrument case leaning against the wall.

“It’s no Stradivarius,” says Lee as his fingers pull notes from the strings. Scuff marks and all, it’s durable and produces a big sound. “It’s made to look like an electric guitar.”

These days, what with writing and reading, he plays less often. One recent outing was during the annual Guelph Jazz Festival in September, when he took part in a workshop at the Macdonald Stewart Art Centre. “We just played and moved around the space.”

In a way, he might be describing the essence of improvised jazz – the topic of Lee’s doctoral thesis begun in 2011.
To read the full article by Andrew Vowles on the University of Guelph’s website, click here.

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