If you don’t know American singer-songwriter David Lee yet, you will. At just 17-years-old, the musician, producer, and dancer from Los Angeles, California has already mastered several instruments over his young years, received press in Europe, and performed at famous concert venues such as Whisky a GoGo and The Viper Room. And he’s just getting started.
With a recent entry into the boyband ’Bout Last Night and big plans for the future, David Lee has proven his talent and begun to make a name for himself in the music industry. In this exclusive interview, David talks about his connection to music, his career, his experience as a teen in the music industry, and his journey to becoming a household name.
David Lee has been a solo artist since 2019, writing and producing music completely on his own. While the lack of a record label no doubt poses challenges, it in no way has hindered David’s success. With 5 singles and an 11-track album, David has shown the industry how potent independence and individuality can be.
All singles have received buzz, but David is most proud of the single “Here for You,” which is his most popular and fastest-growing song with over 49k streams on Spotify to date. “Roller Coaster” is also a Spotify fan-favorite. And, David released his debut album Before It’s Too Late in 2022 which has amassed over 85k streams and critical acclaim. In addition to the numerous awards he has won and the prominent venues he has made appearances at, David was featured in the PBS show “Celebration of Music” as a Producer’s Choice Award recipient.
And David’s success is not strictly limited to music. Like many teens, the artist is social media savvy and has used his platforms to promote his music and connect with fans. You can join his growing fan base on Instagram here and TikTok here.
Now you’re caught up on David Lee’s numbers, but the artist is much more than just his stats. The teen’s music career began early when he started playing the guitar as a four-year-old. Since then, he has also added the bass, drums, and piano to his resume.
David cited Guns N’Roses and Michael Jackson as early music influences and explained that he was “always surrounded by music as a kid. My parents noticed my love for music and encouraged me to pursue it.” As David began taking lessons and performing at local events, his “passion for music grew” and he “began writing and producing [his] own music.”
When asked if there was a specific moment in which he realized music was his calling, David simply said music is something he’s always wanted to pursue. “I felt a sense of joy and fulfillment whenever I played music, and I knew that I wanted to share that feeling with others.”
Music and Fans
For those unfamiliar with David’s music, it’s “a unique blend of pop, rock, and r&b.” After listening to his discography, it is clear that David is a versatile artist and that his music can fit several different vibes and occasions. As explained by the teen, “I try to make my music creative to listen to when I produce and write the tracks. I want my music to connect with people on a deeper level and to inspire them to be who they want to be.” With lyrics that are often raw and personal, the artist successfully draws his listeners in and encourages them to relate to what he is saying.
But for David, music is more than just a way to make money. Not only is this evidenced by his musical background and passion for the craft, but it is also seen in what he has used music to do. Music has allowed David to “express [himself] in a way that nothing else can.” According to him, “It’s a way for me to connect with people on a deep level and to share my experiences and emotions with the world. Music has helped me foster important relationships and connections with other musicians, producers, and fans.”
Speaking of important relationships, one aspect of David’s career that he describes as being instrumental to his success is his fanbase, aptly called his “Famlee.” The Famlee has supported David since day one and helped him progress his career, and David says he is “constantly amazed by their passion and dedication.” A dedicated fanbase is no doubt crucial to success in the music industry, but David’s evident gratitude for the people that love his music is reflective of the kind of artist he is and the kind of musical impact he wants to have.
The teen expressed his appreciation for his fans and stressed the meaningful impact they have had on him and his career, calling it “a reminder of why I do what I do.” He also talked about a specific fan moment that stood out to him: “A group of fans surprised me at one of my shows with my merch and knew every word to my songs. It was very rewarding.”
David Lee is also the latest member of ’Bout Last Night, a six-person boyband sure to collect more fans. He describes it as an “exciting new challenge.”
“Working with a team has definitely been exciting because, for the last couple years, it's all been done by myself. It's great to have other people to bounce ideas off of and to share the workload. All of the guys are very talented and great writers to work with. On the other hand, it can be challenging to navigate different personalities and creative visions however the band gets along very well. Overall, I'm enjoying the experience and learning a lot from my bandmates.”
According to David, ’Bout Last Night’s passion for music and dedication to original creation is what sets them apart from other bands. Be sure to witness this originality in action and follow their journey on Instagram here and TikTok here.
Experience as a teen artist
As a 17-year-old, David Lee is definitely on the younger side of the music industry, and this has presented him with unique challenges, opportunities, and experiences. While it means that he may be a less seasoned artist who finds it harder to gain respect from his older counterparts, it also means that he can more easily connect with younger fans and bring a fresh and youthful perspective into the industry.
As succinctly put by the artist, “Being a young player in the music game has had its challenges, but it’s also been incredibly rewarding. I've found that I can relate to a younger audience and build fans off of that. At the same time, I've had to work hard to prove myself and to gain the respect of more experienced artists.” And David is in no way inexperienced, as he has several years under his belt.
Throughout his career, he has learned that talent and hard work are the keys to success in the music industry. He has also learned about the importance of promotion.
“I've learned that social media is a powerful tool for connecting with fans and getting my music out there. I've also learned that it's important to stay true to myself and to my vision, even when faced with pressure to conform to industry standards.”
It’s also important to note that in his pursuit of success while staying true to himself and his visions, David has managed to continue honoring one of his greatest joys: using his music to support charities. He has used his talent to support causes such as the Leukemia Lymphoma Society, the Rex Fest Foundation, Resounding Joy, the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, and the Ronald McDonald House.
When asked what he saw next for himself, David claimed that he sees himself continuing to grow and evolve as an artist over the next few years. He wants to push the creative boundaries and explore new styles and sounds as well as work on the performance side of music, which is one of his favorite parts. He will continue to support charitable causes and inspire others to follow their dreams as he has.
“Ultimately, my goal is to make a positive impact on the world through my music.”