Amos Lee’s music shimmers with grief, love and aspiration. His songs can span the ephemeral bridge between pain and hope, uncertainty and faith; or they can wrap scathing social observation around the heartfelt quest for redemption and salvation. But his essence lies in a nuanced acoustic-grounded exploration of a musical geography whose Appalachian peaks and old-timey valleys, reverential streams and crossroads of soul are indelibly his.
Lee is a former school teacher who began his musical career in 2005 with a home-brewed blend of acoustic funk, folk and jazz. He has grown into a populist Americana singer-songwriter whose dusty vocals are equally at home in a smooth, soothing R&B groove and soaring in bittersweet cadences over the emotional razor-wire of everyday life, relationships and struggles. His third and most recent album, Mountains of Sorrow, Rivers of Song, was recorded in Nashville and features notable collaborations from Alison Krauss and Patty Griffin. It showcases Lee at the peak of his powers and exhibits his funkier side, delivering an occasional touch of tangy horns and an R&B undercurrent.