Lee Aaron

Last updated
Lee Aaron
Leeaaron1 (cropped).jpg
Aaron performing in Toronto (1987)
Background information
Birth nameKaren Lynn Greening
Also known as"Metal Queen"
Born (1962-07-21) July 21, 1962 (age 58)
Belleville, Ontario, Canada
Genres Hard rock, [1] jazz, [1] pop, [1] heavy metal [2]
Occupation(s)Singer, songwriter
InstrumentsVocals
Years active1980–present
Labels Attic, Faithful
Associated acts 2preciious
Website leeaaron.com

Lee Aaron (born Karen Lynn Greening, July 21, 1962) is a Canadian rock singer. She had several hits in the 1980s and early 1990s such as "Metal Queen", "Whatcha Do to My Body", and "Sex with Love". [3]

Contents

Early life

Aaron was born as Karen Lynn Greening in Belleville, Ontario, [4] and began singing in school musicals at the age of five. She attended high school in Brampton, Ontario.

At age seventeen, Aaron's face was badly bruised and her nose broken in a car accident. No surgery was required, but years later Canadian Musician Magazine mistakenly embellished the incident into Aaron requiring complete facial reconstruction. [5] [6] The magazine printed a retraction in the following month's issue. [7]

Career

After singing in a music production when she was fifteen years old, she was asked to join a local rock group called "Lee Aaron". She sang, played alto saxophone and keyboards in this first incarnation of the band, and took on the stage name of Lee Aaron.

1980s

Aaron recorded her debut album, The Lee Aaron Project , in 1982 on Freedom Records; it was later reissued on Attic. The album featured well-known musicians of the Toronto music scene, including members of Moxy, Rif Raf3 (Q107 Homegrown Vol 4 / Lee Aaron Project band), Santers, and Triumph's Rik Emmett. [8] Although the album was available in England only as an import, Aaron was invited to appear later that year at the Reading Festival.

In late 1982, Aaron flew to New York and posed topless for the men's magazine OUI . [6] The magazine's March 1983 issue featured Aaron on the cover and in an interview. Aaron later concluded that posing for the magazine damaged her musical credibility; she regretted the decision and assigned blame for it to pressure from her manager. [9]

1984's recording of the album Metal Queen resulted in a multi-album deal with Attic Records. During the recording of Metal Queen, guitarist John Albani (ex-Wrabit) joined the band and he and Aaron formed a solid songwriting partnership that lasted eleven years.

Between 1984 and 1992, Aaron toured extensively through Europe, and made appearances in Japan and the United States. She released six albums on Attic Records in Canada, as well as international releases in the United Kingdom, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, the Benelux, Italy, Scandinavia, Australia and Japan. She won three Toronto Music Awards for Best Female Vocalist, and ten Juno nominations. [10] [8] Her 1985 album Call Of The Wild featured her well-known rock ballad "Barely Holdin On".

Her most commercially successful album was Bodyrock , released in 1989. The album included several hit songs, including "Whatcha Do to My Body", and was certified double platinum in Canada. [11]

1990s

In 1992, Aaron left Attic Records to start her own label, Hip Chic Music, and released two more albums. On 1994's Emotional Rain (distributed by A & M Canada) Aaron recorded with Don Short and Don Binns (Sons of Freedom), Reeves Gabrels (David Bowie's Tin Machine), and Knox Chandler (the Psychedelic Furs).

1995's 2preciious was a project record written with members of Sons of Freedom, in which she dropped the name "Lee Aaron" entirely and used her real name, Karen. Neither of these recordings was commercially successful, and shortly afterwards the Sons broke up. [12]

Aaron studied acting for a year before beginning to perform jazz and blues in Toronto with Dennis Ziebart. [12]

2000s

Aaron in 2017 2017 Lee Aaron - by 2eight - DSC1612.jpg
Aaron in 2017

In 2000, Aaron released a jazz album, Slick Chick, on her own imprint, Barking Dog Music, with distribution by Fusion 3. [12] She performed extensively in support of this release, showcasing at The Top of the Senator in Toronto and various jazz festivals across Canada and Europe.

In 2002, Aaron was approached to audition with the Modern Baroque Opera Company. She was cast and appeared that year in an ALCAN Performing Arts Award-winning production called 101 Songs for the Marquis De Sade.

Her eleventh album, Beautiful Things, a pop-jazz hybrid, was released in 2004.

Aaron continued to play both rock and selected jazz shows; in 2011 she made her first appearance in Sweden at the Sweden Rock Festival. [13]

In March, 2016, Lee Aaron released her first all-rock album in 20 years. Self-financed and released on her own Big Sister Records, the new album was entitled Fire And Gasoline. [14] Later that year she was inducted into the Brampton Arts Walk Of Fame. [8] She then went on to appear at the Rockingham 2016 melodic/hard rock festival in Nottingham, United Kingdom. [15]

In 2017, Lee Aaron played a number of shows in Germany as well as an appearance at Bang Your Head Festivals and two separate gigs in London and Wolverhampton. [16]

Discography

Lee Aaron performing at the Kitchener Blues Festival Lee Aaron at Kitchener Bluesfest 2018 B.jpg
Lee Aaron performing at the Kitchener Blues Festival

Albums

YearAlbumRPM Top 100SWE chartCH chartDE chart
1982 The Lee Aaron Project ----
1984 Metal Queen 69---
1985 Call of the Wild 86---
1987 Lee Aaron 39262851
1989 Bodyrock 32--36
1991 Some Girls Do 38---
1994 Emotional Rain ----
1996 2preciious (with 2preciious)----
2000Slick Chick (with the Swingin' Barflies)----
2004Beautiful Things----
2016Fire and Gasoline----
2018Diamond Baby Blues----
2020Almost Christmas----
2021Radio On! ----

Compilations

Singles

YearSingleCanadian chart positionAlbum
1982"Under Your Spell"-The Lee Aaron Project
1984"Metal Queen"-Metal Queen
1984"Shake It Up"-Metal Queen
1984"We Will Be Rockin'"-Metal Queen
1985"Barely Holdin' On"-Call of the Wild
1985"Runnin' from the Fire"-Call of the Wild
1985"Rock Me All Over"-Call of the Wild
1987"Only Human"44Lee Aaron
1987"Dream with Me"-Lee Aaron
1987"Power Line"-Lee Aaron
1987"Goin' Off the Deep End"93Lee Aaron
1988"Do You Know What I Mean" (Myles Goodwyn featuring Lee Aaron)47Single only
1989"Whatcha Do to My Body"25Bodyrock
1990"Hands On"38Bodyrock
1990"Sweet Talk"-Bodyrock
1991"Sex with Love"55Some Girls Do
1994"Odds of Love"-Emotional Rain
1995"Baby Go Round"-Emotional Rain
2016"Tom Boy"-Fire and Gasoline
2021"C'mon" [17] -Radio On!

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References

  1. 1 2 3 Dillon, Charlotte. "Lee Aaron". AllMusic. Retrieved 16 July 2016.
  2. Miller, Glenn. "Lee Aaron – Lee Aaron". AllMusic. Retrieved 16 July 2016.
  3. "Lee Aaron: From Metal Queen to Rockin’ Mom". Observer, By Bryan Reesman • 08/23/16
  4. "Lee Aaron, Canada's Metal Queen, Is Back to Reclaim Her Crown", Noisey, J Bennett Feb 4 2016
  5. Canadian Musician . Norris Publications. April 1987. ISSN   0708-9635.CS1 maint: untitled periodical (link)
  6. 1 2 "CANOE JAM! Music - Pop Encyclopedia - Aaron, Lee". Jam.Canoe.ca. Retrieved 2009-02-25.
  7. Canadian Musician . Norris Publications. May 1987. ISSN   0708-9635.CS1 maint: untitled periodical (link)
  8. 1 2 3 "Lee Aaron: Portrait Of A Survivor". FYI Music News, Sep 29, 2016 by Kerry Doole
  9. "Lee Aaron interview". Full In Bloom Music.com. Retrieved 2009-07-05.
  10. "Juno Awards and Nominations - Lee Aaron". junoawards.ca.
  11. "Lee Aaron". Encyclopedia of Music in Canada . Retrieved August 17, 2019.
  12. 1 2 3 Nielsen Business Media, Inc. "Metal Queen Aaron takes Detour". Billboard. Nielsen Business Media, Inc.; 24 June 2000. ISSN   0006-2510. p. 97–.
  13. "Sweden Rock Festival". swedenrock.com.
  14. Begai, Carl. "LEE AARON – Back On The Rock N' Roll Radar". Bravewords. Retrieved 15 June 2016.
  15. "Rockingham United Festival". Review by Kimmo Toivonen, October 2016.
  16. "Lee Aaron live @ The Underworld in London". overland metalhead. 20 July 2017. Retrieved 2017-07-25.
  17. Lee Aaron (2021-05-28). Lee Aaron - C'mon official video (Music video). Canada: LeeAaronTV. Retrieved 2021-05-31. The lead-off single and video from Lee Aaron's new album, Radio On! available worldwide on July 23, 2021