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Introducing: Shane Owens
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 and sang to him.

"I dedicated my album to her," he said. "She passed away a year before last.  She was probably the biggest inspiration to me. I know we got on her nerves, but she'd play if we asked her to play. She'd play all night long."

He started singing early on, and at 6 was part of the church choir. An outgoing youngster, Owens was not shy about being in front of a crowd and welcomed opportunities to sing at nursing homes and charity events.

He became an accomplished athlete. As the quarterback he broke his passing arm during his senior year of high school football, but still earned a spot as a walk-on at Jacksonville State University. When he realized the injury would hamper his football skills, he bought a guitar. He took some lessons and joined Young Country, a band that won the Jimmy Dean Country Showdown state competition in 1995 and 1997.

After Young Country broke up, Owens joined Borderline, whose members morphed into the house band at the club, Cowboys. The club owner recognized Owens talent and encouraged him to go to Nashville, where indie label Rust Records signed him.

Kevin Wayne Waldrop, who co-wrote seven of the 10 songs on Let's Get On With It with Owens, produced the album, which was released on Aug. 23. Influenced by Country legends including Earl Thomas Conley, Vern Gosdin, George Jones and Keith Whitley, Owens made an album that honors his heroes. Owens and Waldrop wrote the debut single, "Bottom of the Fifth."

IN HIS OWN WORDS:

Who is your musical hero?  "Keith Whitley."

What CD is on your stereo right now? "Mine!"

What book is on your nightstand right now? "Crimson Nation: The Shaping of the South's Most Dominant Football Team, written by Eli Gold."

What do you sing in the shower? "'I'll Fly Away,' written by Albert E. Brumley. It was my Grandma's favorite song."

What is your pet peeve? "I'm a neat freak. Everything must be clean."

What actor would portray you in a biopic about your life? "Luke Perry."

What moment in your life would you relive if you could? "My first child being born."

What song do you wish you had written? "'He Stopped Loving Her Today,' written by Bobby Braddock and Claude Putnam and recorded by George Jones."

What word or phrase do you find yourself saying over and over again? "Let's get on it!"

Do you have a lucky charm? "A rusty old pocketknife that my granddaddy gave me when I was 6."

Which mode of transportation do you prefer - planes, trains or automobiles?  "Automobiles."

Who is your dream duet partner? "Reba McEntire."

When they look back on your life in 50 years, what do you hope people say about you? "He was a very classy guy and a great Country artist."

On the Web: www.shaneowens.us

 

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