I started Food Punk to create a space to celebrate food and music. Where else could I herald the magic of both Ramps and Pusha T? Cooking, like music, is an art. Both can be visceral, sensory experiences that transport, inspire and even define us. I’ve often found that those who play with knives are also into ‘deep cuts’ of another nature. It is in this spirit that I bring you this series: HEARD! highlighting the music enthusiasts behind the line, the bar, the pass and the pen.

Lee Gregory is chef and co owner of The Roosevelt here in Richmond. He is a devoted Clemson fan, loves him some Kenny Powers and is prone to starting sing-a-longs in The Roosevelt kitchen.


What was the first live music performance you attended?

First show, no joke, Vanilla Ice. I was in maybe 7th or 8th grade, township auditorium, Colombia, SC. I had 2nd row seats. It was incredible at the time, so loud, now I joke about it. My dad dropped off my friend and I, we thought we were so cool. We were really just dorks. I’m not to proud to admit it, most folks that know me well wouldn’t be surprised that was the first concert..still a dork..ha!

What was the most recent?

The most recent was the cat from Lucero, Ben Nichols. It was his solo tour I think? When I worked in Charlottesville before we opened The Roosevelt, I walked down to The Jefferson Theatre and watched a set or two. Oh, wait I take that back, I saw a band at The National here in Richmond, can’t remember the name. A girl singer was jumping around a lot and they had two guitars and a drum machine. From Austin maybe? I guess I wasn’t impressed.

What album/artist changed/defined/etc your life?
Man, growing up I listened to what everyone listens to down there. A lot of outlaw country, and jammy stuff like The Allman Bros., and The Dead. I never really got into the rest of (the jam band) genre, just the older bands. Then I went through the grunge stuff and gangster rap. Still really the only rap I listen to. Albums were still important back then. I really fell out of most of that stuff when I moved to Richmond in my early twenties. I lived with some music guys that kinda started changing how I saw things, Radiohead’s OK Computer changed a lot for me, blew me away. I’d really never heard it when it was out, it blew my mind, still does. And Bowie, Ziggy Stardust, incredible. Those two really stick out to me.

Do you have a musical equivalent to a guilty pleasure?

My guilt pleasure is Toby Keith, I love that guy. It’s so stupid, but I can’t help myself. What can I say, the guy is a beast.

What album (or band’s music) is your go to for when you wanna smash stuff and life is sticking it to you?
My smash stuff music really only happens at brunch or on the way to brunch on Sunday’s. It takes a lot to get me fired up for that shift after usually busy Friday and Saturday nights. I’ve been listening some to The Sword. They rip in an old metal kind of way. Some real magical wizardy heavy metal. Singing about wolves and dragons and shit, they are on a Game of Thrones level. Wild.

What album is your go to for fist-pumping-this-is-the-best-
ever-happiness times?

Fist pumper might be Green Day’s Dookie, they kinda helped introduce me to that kinda punk scene that we just flat out didn’t see in South Carolina growing up.

A friend’s older brother was way into Fugazi, and (Richmond’s own) Avail, and we heard them through him a good bit, and other bands in that vein, but that Green Day album helped bridge the gap for us, and it just flat out ripped.

What is on your turntable at home right now? Or the last album you listened to on computer MP3 etc?
The last album I listened to through was actually yesterday at brunch, we listened to Snoop Dogg’s Doggystyle, I don’t know how but I still remember nearly every word, I think I shocked a few of my staff, it was pretty funny.

In my car I’ve got a George Jones greatest hits album that I’ve kinda been listening to since he passed. Trying to honor him some way I guess.

Thanks Lee!! Below is a picture of the wall in Lee’s kitchen at The Roosevelt, and the Explosions In The Sky song is for all of you who know what that phrase means.




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