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In March 2010 I received the sad news that the British flamenco guitarist Philip John Lee had died after a battle with cancer.

He was a highly respected performer and began playing flamenco at a time when there were few non-Spanish, let alone non-gypsy guitarists. But like few before him, he was gripped with flamenco fever and with his combination of musicality, technique and sheer hard work and determination, he became a very impressive and expressive flamenco guitarist.

As a teacher he was known for his openness and generosity; he was interested in passing on his knowledge in a musical world where many guarded their falsetas, for fear that their individual identities would be stolen.


This photo of Philip was given to me by Martin; it is one he is particularly fond of.

Over the past few months I have been preparing a special collection of tributes to Philip John Lee from his colleagues – including Paco Peña, friends and family, with some fine photographs, which will soon be published in Classical Guitar magazine. If anyone wishes to contact me about this, my email address is: editor@theresesaba.com


The tribute to Philip John Lee will be published in the April 2011 issue Classical Guitar magazine.

© 2010 Thérèse Wassily Saba