Conceived in 2009 as a response to writer / creator David Milch’s HBO series Deadwood, Peggy Lee’s Tell Tale features an ensemble of improvisers from Vancouver’s deep and varied creative music community. Likening the players to characters in a story, Lee provides each player a chance to voice their individual ideas in unaccompanied solos and in small ensembles within the framework of a musical suite. The seven composed sections of the music imply the arc of a story, yet are also intended as launching pads for the players to make extended improvised statements. The listener is lead on a journey that is never the same twice.
Cellist, improviser, composer Peggy Lee was born and raised in Toronto, Ontario. She studied classical cello, completing a bachelor’s degree in performance at the University of Toronto as a student of Vladimir Orloff and Denis Brott. She furthered her studies on the cello with lessons with Martha Gerschefski in Atlanta Georgia. Lee first became interested in collaborating with artists from different mediums and in veering away from the classical path during the fall of 1988, when she began a year residency with a string quartet at the Banff Centre in Banff, Alberta. She eventually relocated to Vancouver, which she now calls home. Peggy’s first forays into improvisation in Vancouver happened with dancers at the EDAM (experimental dance and music) studio at the Western Front and eventually led to her meeting and joining guitarists Ron Samworth and Tony Wilson in their respective bands; as well as becoming a member of the New Orchestra Workshop, which went on to have interesting and fruitful collaborations with Butch Morris, Wadada Leo Smith, René Lussier, Barry Guy and George Lewis. Peggy continues to collaborate with longtime musical associates including Dave Douglas, Wayne Horvitz, Robin Holcomb, Veda Hille and Lisa Miller.