HOMETOWN: I consider Fort Walton Beach my hometown. I’ve been here since the mid-‘80s on and off.
AGE: Somewhere in the 50s…middle-aged white guy.
RECENT ACCOMPLISHMENTS: Self-produced an album of original acoustic music titled One. CDs are available for sale at live shows or Spotify by searching for Marvin Lee One.
PROFILE: I have the good fortune to make a modest living playing music in one of the most beautiful places on the planet. Most places you will find me are within sight of the Gulf of Mexico. I’ve played for thousands of people, and seeing them smile is what my life is about. I think there is something magic about the fact that music can cross so many cultures and generations.
I play a wide variety of cover songs that span decades. It is not uncommon to go from Gershwin to CCR to Dwight Yoakam to Otis Redding to Cage the Elephant. You can do that here, because Northwest Florida sits at the crossroads of so many musical influences. I try to tap into the diverse taste of deep southern audiences in the covers that I do and the originals I write.
I believe this area is ripe to break out as a “birthplace” musical region, and I hope to see that happen in my lifetime. I play a self-created style of guitar called frailing, which is a percussive technique that is derivative of old style claw-hammer banjo. I often play out with my wife Bri accompanying me on bongo-cajon.
QUOTE: “Music is probably the only real magic I have encountered in my life. There’s not some trick involved with it.” – Tom Petty
FAVORITE FREE PUBLICATION: Beachcomber! With a cold libation.
Marvin Lee performs Tuesdays from 4 to 8 PM at Al’s Beach Club & Burger Bar on the Okaloosa Island Boardwalk.
* Inspired by the late, great Creem magazine.