Biography

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Born in 1954 Lee Vasey grew up in Middlesbrough, and from a very young age was interested in music. He was influenced by watching the early Elvis movies, and soon made his first guitar out of cardboard to impersonate the King, and it wasn’t long before he was entertaining kids by miming to The Shadows and doing their infamous walk!

Lee bought his first guitar from a local pawn shop at the age of 12 and learnt the chords by following, and watching, his older brother who could play the guitar already. He was keen to develop his new found skills and was a regular at the local folk clubs, where he would go on his own, sit in the corner and study the finger style guitarists playing bluegrass and folk music. It is this style of playing that has kept with Lee throughout his career.

 

When he was 15 he joined his first band with his brother, and the drummer at the time was Lee’s cousin, Roy Vasey who people today will know better as the comedian Roy ‘Chubby’ Brown. This band worked together for around 3 years, touring the North East clubs, and one fan of Lee’s guitar at the time was David Coverdale, later of Deep Purple and Whitesnake fame. They spent many hours jamming together, as David loved the sound made by Lee’s guitar.

Lee then got a job for the next 3 years in one of the largest night clubs of the country at Bailey’s in Hull, backing many well known performers of the time like Norman Wisdom, Mud, Showaddywaddy and Tommy Cooper. Tommy would invite the band into his dressing room where he would have his own bar and supply of drinks – happy times!! The job involved playing 7 nights a week, and the only 2 days off in the year were Christmas Day and Boxing Day!

Other bands that appeared at the night club included The Shadows, from whom Lee had learnt so much, and several American artists like Jimmy Ruffin and The Stylistics. The interesting thing about these touring bands was that they always came with a brass section, and this is what gave Lee the idea and inspiration to form the Lee Vasey band with the set up it has today.

Indeed when he moved back to Middlesbrough he formed his first jazz groups, and also other groups that were to be the forerunner to his current band. In 1981 Lee got a job as guitarist at the infamous Norwich club, The Samson and Hercules where he worked each night, and has stayed in the area ever since.

After coming to Norwich Lee also played bass in a band fronted by the Father of Cathy Dennis, for which Cathy was the lead singer before she became a star in her own right with her own chart hits, but more famously for co-writing massive hits like ‘Can’t Get You Out Of My Head’ and ‘Come Into My World’ for Kylie Minogue and ‘Toxic’ for Britney Spears.

 

The First Lee Vasey BandThen around 1987 the Lee Vasey Band first appeared on the scene, and soon became very popular in the region as one of the best, most popular function bands in Norfolk and Suffolk. The band has undergone many changes in personnel over the years, but the quality of the performance has always been of the highest standard around.

Lee continues to be as popular as ever, both with the band and as a solo performer with several regular dates throughout each month, but there’s always room for more so if you are interested in booking Lee, with or without his band give him a call on 01603 418361 for a chat.