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Lee Michaels - JPop.com
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Lee Michaels

Lee Michaels

Lee Michaels


Lee Michaels (born Michael Olsen on November 24, 1945) is a pop/rock singer-songwriter and business entrepreneur that was the 'next big thing' of the 70s pop scene for a time. Born in Los Angeles, California, Michaels, also known as Mike Olsen, began his music career with The Sentinals, a San Luis-based surf rock group that included musicians Merrell Fankhauser and Johny Barbata (later of The Turtles and Jefferson Airplane). Michaels joined Barbata in The Strangers as well Read more on Last.fm
Lee Michaels (born Michael Olsen on November 24, 1945) is a pop/rock singer-songwriter and business entrepreneur that was the 'next big thing' of the 70s pop scene for a time. Born in Los Angeles, California, Michaels, also known as Mike Olsen, began his music career with The Sentinals, a San Luis-based surf rock group that included musicians Merrell Fankhauser and Johny Barbata (later of The Turtles and Jefferson Airplane). Michaels joined Barbata in The Strangers as well, a group led by Joel Scott Hill, before moving to San Francisco and taking in the experimental rock scene. In 1967, he signed a contract with A&M Records, releasing his debut album, 'Carnival Of Life', later that year. Michaels' choice of the Hammond organ as his primary instrument was unusual for the time, as was his bare-bones stage and studio accompaniment, which was usually just a single drummer.

Said person was most often a musician known as 'Frosty' (Bartholomew Eugene Smith-Frost} or was journeyman artist Joel Larson of The Grass Roots. This unorthodox approach attracted a following in San Francisco, and some critical notice, but Michaels did not achieve any real commercial success until the release of his fifth album. Titled simply 'Fifth', the album produced a surprise U.S. Top 10 hit (rising all the way up to #6 in the fall of 1971) in "Do You Know What I Mean". Michaels also produced a Top 40 follow-up, a cover version of the Motown standard "Can I Get A Witness" (originally sung by Marvin Gaye). Michaels recorded two more albums for A&M before signing a contract with Columbia Records in 1973.

His Columbia recordings failed to generate much interest, and Michaels went into semi-retirement from the music business by the end of the decade. He currently owns a chain of restaurants, named 'Killer Shrimp', around Southern California. As the rumor goes, after a trip to New Orleans, Michaels invented a specialty dish that his friends liked so much that they urged him to open a restaurant based around. As a business entrepreneur, Michaels has also found considerable success.

Read more on Last.fm. User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License; additional terms may apply..
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