Fans of Amos Lee's mix of folk, pop, soul and jazz are quite pleased that the singer-songwriter decided to quit his job as an elementary school teacher early this decade. Since deciding to be a full-time musician, Lee has toured with the likes of Bob Dylan, Van Morrison, Elvis Costello, Paul Simon, Merle Haggard and Norah Jones, while fine-tuning his poignant amalgam of styles and influences.
Lee's most recent effort, Last Days at the Lodge, doesn't differ significantly from previous releases; with an introspective, yearning and persistently hopeful nature, it's little wonder that Lee's music has been featured on numerous prime-time television dramas (Grey's Anatomy, ER, etc.). Songs like "What's Been Going On" and "Ease Back" not only lend themselves perfectly to the watershed moment of any melodrama, they're also well-executed examples of non-diluted genre-hopping. Not often does a singer dabble in soul and jazz without doing a disservice to both styles.
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Although far less cutesy than Dave Matthews, Lee can come across a bit middle-of-the-road to folks who prefer more grit in their soul. But when he hits his target, which is a good 90 percent of the time, Amos Lee transcends easy classification.