A country singer and songwriter who embraces the influences of classic country, classic rock, and contemporary pop, Jackie Lee got his start in music at an early age, and was a seasoned veteran in Nashville by the time he scored his first commercial success at the age of 22. Born October 2, 1992, Lee was raised in Maryville, a town in East Tennessee not far from Knoxville. His first interest in music came from singing in church, and by the time he was six years old, he’d caught the attention of producer Carson Chamberlain, who brought the youngster into the studio to sing on a recording session after seeing Lee perform with his family’s group. Lee’s father was a loyal fan of traditional country music, while his mother enjoyed pop hits from the ’80s; the youngster found himself influenced by everyone from Faron Young to Bob Seger to Justin Timberlake. In high school, Lee was a star athlete who played baseball, basketball, and football, but he was still passionate about music, and had learned to play drums, piano, and guitar. Despite helping Alcoa High School’s football team (one of the most successful in Tennessee) go to the state championships two years in a row, Lee quit the team when he discovered it interfered with his music lessons, and at the age of 16, he began focusing his energies on songwriting, after being given an assignment by Chamberlain to write one song a week.
After high school, Lee headed to Nashville, and at the age of 19, he signed a recording contract with Republic Nashville. However the deal with Republic ended without the artist releasing anything for the label, and Lee was looking for another chance. He heard a demo of a song called “She Does,” and was curious about the tune until he was told Kenny Chesney had plans to record it. Chesney eventually passed on the tune, which worked out in Lee’s favor when he landed a new record deal with the independent Nashville label Broken Bow. Lee and his team decided “She Does” was the perfect song for his recording debut, and when his version was released in the fall of 2014, it soon landed on the Billboard Country Airplay charts. Lee’s second single for Broken Bow, “Headphones,” also made its mark on country radio, and he dropped a third single, “Leave the Light On,” in July 2016. After struggling with the death of his mother, Lee shifted his creative direction a bit with the anthemic and cathartic “Getting Over You,” a song that used romantic disappointment as a metaphor for his personal heartbreak. Released in October 2016, “Getting Over You” was co-written by Paul DiGiovanni, formerly of of the pop-punk band Boys Like Girls, one of Lee’s favorite bands in his teenage years. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi