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15-Year-Old LEE Wins The 2023 Edition Of Triple J Unearthed High

17 August 2023 | 2:36 pm | Mary Varvaris

Congratulations to LEE!

LEE and friends with the Unearthed High banner

LEE and friends with the Unearthed High banner (Source: Supplied/triple j)

15-year-old Western Sydney rapper LEE has won the 2023 triple j Unearthed High competition, taking home the opportunity to record his next single with Unearthed and receiving top-tier artist mentoring.

Unearthed High, triple j’s annual search for the country’s best high school-aged musician, revealed its 2023 finalists earlier this month. Previous Unearthed High alums include The Kid LAROI, Genesis Owusu, Gretta Ray, Hockey Dad, and many more, so LEE is joining some great company.

LEE attends the Australian Christian College on Darug Nation, Greater Western Sydney, NSW. Purple Sneakers’ Jessie Lynch described his debut single, UP, as follows: “Put away the compass and coordinates because there's no question what direction LEE is headed after hearing his track 'UP'. The 15-year-old rapper's confidence and charisma is next level.”

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That confidence and charisma are likely what won him this year’s Unearthed High competition, with Unearthed Music Director Dave Ruby Howe sharing, “LEE. turned the volume all the way UP in Unearthed High 2023, and it's that exciting energy and potential in this melodic hip-hop package that's made him rise above in a very competitive group of finalists.

“We know how big this sound is around the world right now, and LEE. very much feels like an artist with a global-facing future. 

“Years from now, scientists might try and bottle LEE.'s sky-high charisma for mass production, but right now, we've got a killer track from a hugely talented artist - and a new Unearthed High champion to celebrate.”

LEE found out he won the competition earlier today (17 August) when triple j presenters Bryce & Concetta snuck into his class at the Australian Christian College while the up-and-coming rapper was surrounded by his family and friends. You can watch the winning video below.

You can get to know LEE and his fellow Unearthed High finalists on triple j’s Unearthed High Yearbook.

Earlier this month, Howe said about the fierce Unearthed High competition, “We can always rely on our annual Unearthed High search to produce a stunning collection of artists making diverse and exciting sounds.”

Howe added, “That's rung true again in 2023. It's never easy to pick just five acts, but we reckon this graduating class of high achievers includes the artists we'll be hearing, watching play and obsessing over next.”