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Music: Loralei, Rory and Grant-Lee, 10.09.01 ...

Although his band, Grant Lee Buffalo enjoyed a few minor radio hits in the '90s, singer-songwriter Grant-Lee Phillips still hovers beneath the pop culture radar.

Even fans of the popular WB show "Gilmore Girls" -- on which Phillips regularly performs -- probably don't realize that the angel-voiced singer was once dubbed "Best Male Vocalist" by Rolling Stone magazine.

But that's OK with the Stockton native. From his early days with Stockton's Shiva Burlesque on to Grant Lee Buffalo and his current solo career, Phillips , who now lives in Los Angeles, has made a career out of remaining slightly left-of-center. His orchestral pop songs -- replete with quirky characters and unusual observations -- are both sweet and satisfyingly cerebral.

Phillips was tapped for "Gilmore Girls," which kicks off its second season at 8 tonight, because producer Amy Sherman-Palladino is a fan. Although his role is small -- he appears in various episodes as the town-square troubadour, playing and singing in mini-vignettes that link scenes together -- Phillips says it gives him new creative impetus.
Credit: Sacramento Bee

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