At the young age of five, Shane Owens' parents gave him a set of drums, and at age six he started singing in the church choir. The choir had members of all ages, but the youngsters powerful voice drew most of the attention, especially on his favorite...
At the young age of five, Shane Owens' parents gave him a set of drums, and at age six he started singing in the church choir. The choir had members of all ages, but the youngsters powerful voice drew most of the attention, especially on his favorite hymns, like I'll Fly Away.
While Owens was still quite young, his father, who was also a singer, and his mother separated. Owens and his older twin sister, who were born exactly one minute apart, stayed with his mother, who never missed the Saturday night broadcast of The Grand Ole Opry out of Nashville.
Country music was always playing in the Owens household. Artists like Don Williams, Keith Whitley and Ricky Skaggs were often heard, while George Jones and Vern Gosdin became particularly influential in Owens' work.
During high school, sports and other school activities took up most of his time, but after graduation in 1990, Owens found a guitar teacher, the highly acclaimed Shelly Commander, and put his focus back on music. Commander immediately recognized Owens' talent and put him to work playing in Commander's band on the weekends. The band line-up changed three of four times, but Owens always remained a member.
He won the Jimmy Dean Country Showdown State Competition in Alabama two years in a row in 1995 and 1996 and made it as far as the national semi-finals. He first went out on his own in 1996, when he and his backup band played the Civic Center in Ozark, Alabama with Conferderate Rail Road. Not long after, Owens married. He and Lisa are now the proud parents of two boys, ages three and eight and he still calls Alabama his home.
Owens, now 35, never stopped performing. He has shared the stage with many of Country's top artists, including Hank Williams Jr., Lori Morgan, George Jones, Merle Haggard, Kenny Chesney, Pam Tillis, Ronnie Milsap, Billy Dean, Keith Urban, Exile and dozens of others, while touring all over the South. The tracks on Owens' Rust Records CD are the best he has done thus far. He wrote seven of the 13 tunes himself, while the remaining tracks were written by his various music industry friends.
Fishin' and singin' by Erika Bolin AUGUSTA, GA. - Shane Owens is genuine country folk and he's proud of his deep backwoodsy roots. His Marlboro Man good looks match his radio-friendly country music. But his Montana trail-worn look...
Introducing: Shane Owens by CMA Close Up News Service By Gary Voorhies 2006 CMA Close Up News Service / Country Music Association, Inc. A native of tiny Samson, Ala., the first musical influence for Shane Owens was his grandmother, who played piano...
Fishin' and singin' by Erika Bolin AUGUSTA, GA. - Shane Owens is genuine country folk and he's proud of his deep backwoodsy roots. His Marlboro Man good looks match his radio-friendly country music. But his Montana trail-worn look is legit.
And so is his music. Owens said he grew up listening to The Grand Ole Opry show. "I always loved Keith Whitley and the old-type country music that I don't think there's enough of going on today. I have brought that back into my music."
But he said it was his grandma, Edna, who was his biggest influence. "She really made me who I am. And oddly enough, I actually didn't write my first song until after she passed. It was just one of those things that came over me."
He started as a little cowpoke. "I sung in church a lot. My grandma was a Baptist church pianist there. All the people on my daddy James T.'s side are musically influenced."
He adds, "My sister Michelle sings, but just in church. And my mom, Sherie, sings along to the radio."
Owens said he was on a cell phone calling from a river right outside the Alabama-Georgia border. "My friend called me up and said, 'Let's go fishing.' I'm sitting here right now, trying to catch guppies."
Owens' Southern accent was so heavy the sentence he just said had to be checked. Sure enough, he spoke slower and the words "bream" and "bass" came through.
He described the scene: "There's probably a hundred folks out here with us. Whatever will bite, we'll catch, except snakes."
Almost whispering now, probably so as his fishing pals didn't hear, he said, "I am definitely afraid of snakes," and beginning to laugh loud, yet nervously. "Don't let that redneck country-boy stuff fool you. I see them and I shoot them!"
Owens said he loves to perform. "I play a little guitar and not so great. Really, I'm one of these guys that's jumping on the table and singing to the crowd."
Then honest, like God's listening, Owens admits an accidental performing faux pas. "I did jump on a chair recently, and it busted right through! I got up real fast so no one would notice. But they saw and got a good laugh out of it!"
Owens, who sells out shows today, said he has crooned at plenty of those two-bits-of-silver-and-a-beer-paying gigs. "Those days gave me plenty of life to write about. And I think if you get in this solely for the money, you're going to have trouble.
And, unless you have a record company standing beside you like a George Strait, it's hard to make the big bucks.
Nowadays, everybody's listens to a new song, and they want a new one the next month."
Owens is now a success. But he said there is a downside to his rising musical career. "We're gone performing almost all week. And not getting to see my little boy play baseball last year was the hardest thing."
The upside has been meeting and performing with a musical hero. "I got to open a few shows for George Jones. And with him being of amazing status, it was just unbelievable for us."
Owens' next CD, which is still untitled, will be out in October.
He said, "It's coming along great. With the first album, I didn't have this much freedom. It was their dime and their time.
I'm not saying I had to do stuff that was against my will. I mean, I can do more of what I want and I have a great band."
Many of the pending albums' songs are those originals that suddenly needed to be told after the passing of Owens' grandmother.