mr. lee’s approach to the music business is like that of a professional athlete.
Thriving on competition and camaraderie, with a fierce passion for music and business, he refuses to settle for anything less than a music championship. The producer, remixer, singer, songwriter, musician, and all-around entertainer is a product of the mid 80s, whose unique sound lies in the dusty vinyl record-laden household in which he was raised.
Jonathan Lee is an organic creator who weaves a storyline from his unique production to his songwriting and vocals, in a way which will leave a definite effect on each listener.
His music beginnings were heard all over mixtapes sold on NYC’s Canal Street in the mid 2000s featuring collaborations with artists like Cam’ron and The Diplomats, Lil Wayne, Young Jeezy, Tech N9ne; hosted by Gucci Mane, The Black Wall Street Records‘ Nu Jerzey Devil, DJ Scream, DJ Kurupt and Team Invasion. His executive producer debut hosted by DJ Vlad sold 12,000 units independently in 2005 and was the highest selling Canadian mixtape until the release of Drake‘s “So Far Gone.”
Jonathan continued to make his musical mark on the mixtape circuit for the next few years collaborating with various artists from record labels like Asylum Records, Babygrande Records, D-Block Records, Def Jam Records, Diplomat Records, G-Unit Records, Universal Records and Virgin Records.
Remixing fellow Victoria, BC native Nelly Furtado‘s “Maneater,” originally produced by multi-platinum, Grammy-award winning producer Timbaland, Jonathan’s 2006 “Maneater” remix video accumulated 7 million views on YouTube (more than triple the total view count of the official Universal Music Group music channel’s video at the time) before being removed by UMG.
In late 2008, Lee went on to co-produce “Boom,” a collaboration with T-Pain which was featured on the season finale of the Fox Broadcasting Company‘s number one rated show So You Think You Can Dance (Season 4) viewed by 13 million+ people in the USA/Canada.
Wanting to focus on the marketing/PR, branding, A&R and management side of the music business, Jonathan took a year off from all things musical. Soon he found his commentary on the impact of social media and its influence on the current and future states of the music industry being published on the front page of the entertainment section in The Vancouver Sun. In 2010, he co-managed national touring artist Kuba Oms‘ headlining performances at 2010 Winter Olympic Games sponsored events in Vancouver and Whistler, BC. Directly after, Jonathan found himself as a PR/Marketing consultant for a national advertising spot in conjunction with Sirius Radio and Cineplex seen by 5 million+ people in movie theatres across the country.
From there, Jonathan’s interest shifted to the visual creative side. Alongside the national radio campaign release of Kuba Oms‘ chart topping dance hit “Electrolove,” was Jonathan’s cover artwork design. Jonathan’s interest shifted to music video production momentarily, which saw him directing and editing several music videos including co-producing and co-directing Kuba Oms‘ official music video for “Electrolove.” This also facilitated a second collaboration on Jonathan’s debut as a composer, contributing an original theme song to independant short film “Checkmate.” Soon after Lee joined a music licensing initiative started by DJ Skee to further his original music composition for major television, video game, and film spots.
Back with a fresh perspective, Jonathan found himself back in love with all things musical. He immediately re-dedicated and re-focused himself back to the art of producing, songwriting, and engineering music.
In the last 6 months of 2011, Jonathan managed to collaborate with Diplo and Pharrell‘s favourite band Mansions on the Moon for “Big City Chaser,” which managed to feature on 100+ blogs (including BroBible.com, AshleyOutrageous, ThisSongIsSick.com, TheNeptunes.org) and accumulated 100,000+ listens on SoundCloud in less than a week. Enlisting the help of Los Angeles based Hyper Crush and team N.E.R.D.‘s Christian Rich for “Swag Up, Hands Up,” Jonathan’s infectious electro synth-driven dance floor groove went #1 on Hype Machine, the biggest music blog aggregator in the world in less than 24 hours. Most recently, Jonathan released a Hip hop/rock concept mashup mixtape entitled “Boss vs Boss” mixing the boss Rick Ross and the original boss Bruce Springsteen. The mixtape hosted by Pigeons & Planes, was featured on 100+ blogs and was a Fader Fort favorite at South By Southwest (SXSW) in 2012.
Taking on remix duties once again, Jonathan remixed Grammy-award winning Bon Iver‘s single “Towers” from the self-titled album “Bon Iver.” The Jonathan Lee Remix became an online viral sensation charting #1 on Hype Machine, featuring on MuchMusic‘s New.Music.Live, We Are Hunted, and 200+ other blogs.
Lee’s expansion into corporate branding through sound, led to commercial collaborations with companies like Dolce & Gabbana and frequent collaborator photographer/videographer Meagan Cignoli.
Drawing inspiration from all genres of music in different eras, combined with the do whatever it takes to get it done one man record label mentality, Mr. Lee is set to make his mark in this young century just as his influences have in the one past.