RIP: Lee Shaw, 1926-2015

October 26th, 2015, 9:01 am by Greg

Lee Shaw died on Sunday morning, October 25, at the age of 89.

The jazz pianist-educator was a mentor and inspiration to so many musicians and music fans throughout Greater Nippertown and beyond.

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Born in Oklahoma in Oklahoma on June 25, 1926, Shaw was inducted into the Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame in 1993. Shaw and her husband-drummer Stan Shaw, who died in 2001, moved to the Local 518 in 1971, and she was one of the guiding lights of the Capital Region music scene ever since, playing for the past 14 years with her devoted rhythm section of bassist Rich Syracuse and drummer Jeff Siegel. In 1997, she was inducted into the Capital Area Music Association Hall of Fame.

In the liner notes of the Lee Shaw Trio’s 2008 CD/DVD set, Live in Graz, Shaw is quoted as saying: “Music is as important as breathing… For me, it has become a way of life; finding new ways of expressing a musical idea, being willing to take chances when performing. Learning and growing have to be part of the most exciting elements of being alive.”

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