Chuck Shaw

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Chuck Shaw says he's always been a focused person in terms of what’s going on in his life. Some call it “singular vision" and will tell you that once Chuck becomes interested in something, he gets totally absorbed and develops an encyclopedic knowledge of that subject or activity.

His “moment of truth” came when he was 13 years old and playing in a country/rock band. He recalled, "We recorded an album, mainly for family and friends, but I was hooked! I was motivated from that point on in knowing what I wanted to do and the kind of music I wanted to play and compose."

His family has a long history of singing in church choirs, and Chuck states that singing in church has always been a special time for him. His mother, who plays the piano, would always sing to him as a baby. His father, while not a musician, likes all types of music and has an extensive CD collection, which he shared with his son.  The family was always going to a local concert or festival, which exposed the young Chuck to different styles of music. He had the obligatory piano lessons and then learned to play the guitar and harmonica.

While in college, Chuck joined a bluegrass group and eventually became the leader. The group played college events and local bars. For three years they were featured at the Durango Bluegrass Meltdown. For two summers he worked on a dude ranch, providing entertainment around the campfire.

In addition to singing and playing the guitar, Shaw is also a songwriter.  He says he doesn’t have a special formula when it comes to composing, and that a lot of what he writes is based on personal experiences and observations of other people, or just when a theme or melody or lyric hits him.

When it came time to decide what his next step would be after college, he realized he needed a plan, and that life is essentially a series of experiences. He calls them a series of adventures. So what is it like to go on the road with a band? The leader of the country/rock group Mostly Water was willing to give this rookie a chance to tour with his band, performing at honky tonks and casinos. For six months, Chuck was constantly on the move with three fellow band members, learning new tunes, putting on a high-energy show almost every night, figuring out what works and what doesn't, and how to get the audience involved. 

In the summer of 2015 Chuck recorded his debut EP - Where I'm Gonna Be. He commented, "I am more than pleased with how it turned out. One compliment I received was especially encouraging: 'Definitely a talent to watch.'"

Chuck Shaw says it's been a great ride so far, and he's confident the best is yet to come. Call him a purist, but he loves music for its own sake, and has a clear idea of the style he wants to play. Reflecting on his experiences to date, he says, "I've been able to move into new communities with all my belongings packed in the back of my Jeep, get established, and make a living for myself. I love meeting new people and having them become fans and friends. We definitely feed off of each other."

Be sure to catch a Chuck Shaw show when he comes through your town!