Lee Koch (pronounced "cook") carries a worldly, well-worn humbleness that is both captivating and refreshing, alluding to an era when pop music was used to express the depths of an artist’s soul. Lee’s newest album, Whole Heart, bears the gift of a voice brimming with honesty, full of youthful hopefulness and ambition.
Growing up in the Inland Empire of Southern California, Lee Koch came of age with the radio dialed into the Golden Oldies. He soaked in the great music of Motown and the gritty voices of 60’s Rock, eventually crafting his own songs and developing a unique, rootsy croon. After finishing high school Lee cut his teeth playing harmonica and singing at blues clubs along the coast of Southern California.
He moved to Ventura and released his first record, Same As Blood, in 2009. A debut that moved Surfer Magazine senior writer Gabe Sullivan to declare “It’s a rare treat to discover music that gives you goose bumps and inspire you to be a better person. The first musician who made me feel this way was Ben Harper. Now it’s Lee Koch.”
Marching on towards a newfound audience, Lee began touring and crowd funding, pouring himself into the recordings for Whole Heart; a record that proves his worth as both a strong new voice in the current folk revival and a craftsmen-like troubadour in the vein of Ray LaMontagne. Same As Blood producer Jesse Siebenberg provides a clean and unobtrusive space for Lee’s dynamics, holding everything down with sparse arrangements and power point drumming. “Shining On Me,” echoes the country gospel of Ben Harper while the inflections of “Trusty Branch” conjure up the endearing simplicity of Amos Lee.
Whether he is professing his passionate faith or barreling into a barn stomper with machine gun lyrics, Lee’s performances are imbued with artistry and integrity. People that see his live show try to explain their natural attraction. It's a kind of electricity. You believe what he's singing. His concerts are known to lift up, shake down, and send you off with a new voice in your head.