Name: Dick Lee
Date of birth: 24 August 1956
Occupation: Songwriter, playwright, composer, creative director
How you got started: Starting in 1971, at the age of 15, Dick Lee participated in various talent competitions with the group Harmony, and later on, Dick and the Gang when he teamed up with his siblings. During this period, Dick started to write his own songs seriously. His first album, Life Story, was released in 1974. Throughout the 70s and 80s, Dick infused Asian elements in pop music and his pioneering album, Life in the Lion City (1984), won acclaim. In 1989, the release of his next album, The Mad Chinamen, achieved platinum status in just three months. In 1990, he moved to Japan where he continued to develop this new Asian sensibility in his solo work. Dick Lee also collaborated with top Asian artists such as Andy Lau, Sandy Lam, Jackie Cheung, Sammi Cheng, Anita Mui, Miyazawa of The Boom, Kit Chan, Stephanie Sun among others.
Notable achievements: Composed in 2007, the song that he is most proud of writing is "Home", which until today is the most popular National Day song. He also wrote two other songs for National Day: "We will get there", and SG50's signature song, "Our Singapore". In 2005, he was conferred the Cultural Medallion for his achievements in music. Others include The Perfect 10 Music Achievement Award for his outstanding contribution to the local music scene. In the same year, he was awarded Best Original Movie Theme Song for the 1994 movie, "She's a man, he's a woman".
Something you might not have known about him: Apart from music, he is also passionate about fashion. At an early age of 16, his interest started when he designed clothes for his mother's boutique Midteen. He studied fashion in London from 1977 to 1982 and later, opened his boutique called Ping Pong. Besides designing for his own boutique, Dick also worked with Celia Loe and Island Shop. Dick was also fashion editor for Female magazine in 1986. He was one of the founders of the Society of Designing Arts (SODA), which spearheaded the opportunities for our local designers in the fashion market. He also set up Singapore's very first young designers' store, Hemispheres.
A quote to sum it all up: "My three pillars that have supported me all my life are humility, as we're never as important as we think we are; kindness, which is the one thing people always remember about you; and patience, for if you believe, your time will come, so just wait and don't force the issue."