Lenny Dee was a versatile organist who enjoyed a Top 20 hit with "Plantation Boogie" in 1955 and recorded a series of albums. He is best-known for being able to make his organ sound like a wide variety of other musical instruments.
Dee was born in Illinois, but raised in Florida, where he learned to play piano when he was seven years old. After he began playing the piano, he also learned how to play accordion and banjo. In his late teens, he studied music in Chicago. While he was studying, he began performing concerts on organ; during this time, he perfected his distinctive style.
Dee began touring the U.S. after completing his studies. At a Nashville concert, Red Foley was impressed with his style and brought the organist to Decca Records. Dee signed a contract in the mid-'50s, releasing his first single, "Plantation Boogie," in 1955. The single became a hit, peaking at number 19. He followed it with his first album, Dee-lightful!, which peaked at number 11. The hits dried up for Dee quickly, though he continued to release records and tour. He returned to the charts in 1968, with his Gentle On My Mind album. Two other hit albums followed -- Turn Around, Look At Me (1969), Spinning Wheel (1970) -- which peaked in the lower reaches of the charts. Dee stopped recording in the mid-'70s. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine & Kenneth M. Cassidy