"Nobody plays guitar like him," wrote the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung newspaper about Nguyên Lê; the very first exclusive ACT artist ever. Born of Vietnamese parents in Paris in 1959, Nguyên Lê is one of the most versatile and independent guitarists in the world – going far beyond the bounds of jazz music and shaped by the most varied of influences such as Asian music, modern jazz, fusion or classic rock.
Gitarist Ngyuên Lê is a very particular jazz musician for a number of reasons: Even though he lives in Paris where he was born in 1959, he feels very connected to the cultural background of his Vietnamese family. He furthermore is self taught and just started to play the drums by the age of 15, but soon switched to the guitar.
He entered the music business in 1983 playing with the Afro-Caribbean band “Ultramarin“. His impressive career really kicked off after joining the French “Orchestre National du Jazz” in 1987. Already his first solo albums – released at the beginning of the 90es – attracted a large and still growing audience.
Lê had his German debut in collaboration with the Jazzpãna-Ensemble in 1993. It was exceedingly well received by critics and fans. Newspaper “Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung“ was even raving about his playing: „There is no other human playing the guitar like Lê!“. ACT-boss Siggi Loch just felt the same and Nguyên Lê became his label’s first exclusive artist.
To this day, Lê released no less than 12 albums on ACT. He has played with almost every important and famous European or American jazz artist. He is a regular guest to WDR Big Band and has founded several bands and ensembles, whereof trio E_L_B (with Peter Erskine und Michel Benita) and Lê’s “Jimi Hendrix Project” are the most successful and well-known.