By December 3, 2016 0 Comments Read More →

CountryView – Shane Minor

By DJ Walker
Morning Show Host KAT Country 103

Country music performers usually spend the early part of their career playing bars and various other gigs hopefully making it to the next level of becoming a national recording artist in Nashville. But those Big Stars wouldn’t be where they were if it wasn’t for one thing.

The song. It’s the song that makes or breaks the artist. And the craft of creating the right combination of lyric to melody is an art unto itself.

One of those craftsmen is Shane Minor. Shane grew up in Modesto. He went to Rose Avenue Elementary and graduated Modesto High School. While he was listening to his favorite California Country Singers, Buck Owens, Merle Haggard and Dwight Yoakam, he was also writing his own lyrics and creating his own stories. Eventually it was legendary producer Dan Huff who heard his talent and Shane was signed to Mercury Records Nashville.

“At the time, it wasn’t easy to convince Nashville that someone from California could sing country music.” Says Shane. “ ‘ What does a California boy know about country music? ’, they’d say. I’d tell them there is more agriculture and cowboys where I’m from than Palm trees and beaches!” But, eventually all things come to an end, and becoming a country artist wasn’t meant to be for Shane.

It was always songwriting that was closest to his heart and what Minor happily returned to. “Beautiful Mess” by Diamond Rio was the big breakout song for Shane as a writer. “Originally Faith Hill was going to cut the song, “, recalls Shane, “but she passed on it and Diamond Rio recorded it.”

Good thing, because It quickly became Minor’s first #1.

Since then, he’s penned several #1 songs for singers that include, Luke Bryan, Kenny Chesney, Cole Swindell, Steve Holy and Chris Young just to name a few. And the hits keep coming! He has several cuts on recent albums from Jason Aldean, Justin Moore and Drake White.

I can only imagine that when Shane co-wrote Craig Morgan’s #1 song “International Harvester” he was thinking about the country back roads of Modesto.

“I’m a God fearing hardworking combine driver,
Hogging up the road on my plower,
Chug-a-lug-a-lugin 5 miles an hour,
On my International Harvester.”

Yup. We’ve all be behind that tractor on that ‘State Paved Road.’

“I can keep writing until I’m 75 if I want to!” Says Shane. “Every now and then I see Whispering Bill Anderson in the office. I said, ‘ What you doing Bill?’ , ‘Still at it baby! ’, he said! That’s the beautiful thing about songwriting.”

It’s all about the song. Singers can deliver a great performance, but it’s the lyrics and the melody that have to resonate with us for us to fall in love with the song and want to sing it over and over again.

Shane has a knack for finding the right combination of words and music to keep the hits flowing. So the next time you’re driving in Modesto past the acres of nut trees and breaking for the slowing moving tractors, listening to your favorite country song – chances are it was influenced and crafted by the memories of those same orchards and dairies that raised that Northern California country boy turned Nashville songwriter.



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About the Author:

Chris Murphy is the President and CEO of Sierra Pacific Warehouse Group and Publisher and Founder of ModestoView Inc. Chris worked globally in the cycling industry returning to Modesto in 1996. He is also the founder of the Modesto Historic Graffiti Cruise Route, Legends of the Cruise Walk of Fame, Modesto Rockin’ Holiday, the Modesto Music History Organization and co-founder of the Modesto Area Music Association. Chris is married to his artist wife Rebecca since 1985 and has two daughters Madison and Abigail, both graduating from Modesto High and UC Berkeley. He is lead singer and guitarist for his band, Third Party that donates their performances to non-profits.