SHANNON talks about his craft, sense of style, and much more
How did you come by your stage name?
As a solo artist, I’ve always just used my actual name. It’s a somewhat unique name or at least not a usual one, yet it’s still one most people have heard and can easily pronounce. So it’s been ideal for my online social media presence and as a performer, I’ve always been known to my fans as just “Shannon”. For me, my real name has been the best stage name.
When did you discover your love for your craft and what made you realize you wanted to pursue a career in it?
My parents tell a story of their going to a concert a month before I was born, and I was very obviously and dramatically kicking to the beat of the music. So I guess I’ve had a thing for music from the earliest of days. And my family has a music tradition, so I began music training at age 5 with piano and vocal lessons. I think I must just be wired for music. I love listening to music and I find it exciting to create new songs as melodies and lyrics occur to me.
To what or whom do you accredit your sense of style?
My musical style has developed over the years as I have been influenced by my music instructors and of course by the music I hear by other artists. The list of artists who I’ve been influenced by is too long to name them all. I guess everyone has been influenced by The Beatles; I certainly have! And by Justin Bieber, Justin Timberlake, One Direction, Sebastian Yatra, Bee Gees, Rolling Stones, Elvis, Ed Sheehan, Camila, Oasis, U2, Journey, Coldplay, Dylan, and on-and-on. So many great songs by these legends.
On your current project, how did you come up with the concept?
My latest release, Do You Know, came about in a long studio session. I had some melodies and lyric themes in mind before the recording session, but it was one of those instances where ideas for instrumentation and riffs just seemed to flow when we started the recording session. And the song structure fell into place with the bridge and then a key change for the end of the song. Sometimes things just seem to be a flow of consciousness (and sometimes definitely not, ha).
I think the song has become popular from the smooth melody and the lyrics that tell a story. The lyrics are what someone would like to say to their girlfriend or boyfriend; “…I hope you know I’m always thinking of you. Do you know my love is true?” So listeners like singing along with the words of the song and replaying the song. I think that’s why it has gotten millions of plays on social media and streaming.
What are some of your greatest challenges, and what is your greatest attribute when it comes to your work ethic?
Time is the challenge! A big challenge. I know we all get the same amount, but as a teenager with school and sports, finding enough time to rehearse, write and record can be a big issue. I have dozens of songs that are in some stage of development at the studio, so I just have to focus on completion and rely on my producer for mixing and deciding on mastering for final tracks. After a few years of working with the same studios and sound engineers, the creation and recording process is though getting much faster. That makes life easier.
Are you the best at what you do in your opinion?
If there’s something I’m best at in the music, it’s hearing a new melody or song in my head. I consider myself very fortunate that composing a melody, or a chord progression or a beat seems to resonate when I start playing the guitar or piano. I found though that songs or melody ideas may occur to me at weird times. A producer gave me some advice in LA, which I suppose most songwriters follow: When you think of it, write it down immediately wherever you are, because even though you’re certain that you’ll of course remember the tune or lyrics, you may not, and it will be lost forever. Maybe it was a hit.
What are your plans for the near future?
Well, a lot is happening in the next few months. I have new singles releasing next month, and an album in early 2021. My online videos are getting a lot of traction, so I’m going to try to create some very entertaining videos for my new releases. Always lots of fun!
Is there anyone you’d like to thank, any shout outs?
It’s another long list when I think about people to thank; sort of like the speeches by Grammy winners who go on forever with their list of names and have to be pulled away from the microphone. So along the lines of what those lucky winners always say, I do want to thank God, my wonderful mother and father, my super talented producer James Tran, my amazing studio engineers Will Carmack, Francesco Benvenuto, Aaron Carpenter and TJ Callaway, my gifted music teacher Sharla Davidson, my patient and talented piano coach David Psenicka, my great guitar coaches Kc Myers and Josh Mills, my phenomenal vocal coach Diana Buckholz, and so many others who have helped me along the way in performances and in recording. Not much would have happened without all the efforts by all of them. I’m so very grateful.
How can fans find you?
In the social media world, you can find me or my music on all the streaming platforms for music and on the websites for artist profiles and videos. To link a few:
YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCJTge-8aH9LncF0khqgWQPA
Apple Music artist page: https://music.apple.com/us/artist/shannon/605162626
Spotify artist page: https://open.spotify.com/artist/2YIQHm456KtbDirAu5VygO
My own website is: https://www.shannonpopmusic.com
And I hope you will check out my latest release, Do You Know, at:
What suggestions do you have for other artist like yourself?
To other artists similar to myself, I would say that if you’re making music that you really like yourself, there are probably a lot of other people who will like it. You just have to put your music out there and find your audience. It’s a chance to tell your story in your music and lyrics. Not everyone gets that opportunity. It’s a gift, so best seize the day!