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Shawn Lane


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Shawn Lane (March 21, 1963 – September 26, 2003) was an American multiinstrumentalist and composer.

He is best known for his solo album Powers of Ten and his long stint with former John McLaughlin bassist and virtuoso in his own right Jonas Hellborg.

Shawn Lane was born in Memphis, Tennessee. At the age of eight he accompanied his sisters on the piano, but did not play guitar seriously until he was ten. Shawn progressed very rapidly on the guitar, and he found it to be his natural instrument. At thirteen, Shawn began to practice heavily, developing his technical abilities. Word began to spread around Memphis about a talented young guitar player, and at fourteen Shawn auditioned for the lead guitar spot in Black Oak Arkansas. At fifteen, Shawn saw Allan Holdsworth at a UK concert and was inspired to develop his own method of playing guitar.

At eighteen Shawn Lane was married and burnt out from touring with Black Oak Arkansas so he decided to take a break and learn more about music. Over the next eight years or so, he studied music and composing on his own and mainly worked on playing piano. Much of the material on Powers of Ten was conceived at his piano, as Shawn considered it his main writing instrument. He began to create demo tapes for “Powers of Ten” which got into the hands of Warner Brothers Music through his friend Reggie Jackson.


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  • Strawb77

    great shame about the word `was` in his biog

    9 Jan 2:24am Reply
  • Jamesismynamo

    i found this guitarist from Australia that goes by Plini that I think you guys would like, this track especially reminds me of Shawn Lane's stuff on Powers of Ten

    21 Oct 2013 Reply
  • Alex_Nvrstqx

    unearthly as Holdsworth

    8 Sep 2013 Reply
  • florigen9

    Shawn Lane Forever

    19 Jul 2013 Reply
  • florigen9

    Best phrasing ever [4]

    30 Jun 2013 Reply
  • xdadansx

    1000+ plays on my library...:D

    4 Mar 2013 Reply
  • xKSB

    Best phrasing ever [3]

    6 Dec 2012 Reply
  • Jamesismynamo

    Best phrasing ever [2]

    13 Nov 2012 Reply
  • Zar2704

    best phrasing ever

    10 Sep 2012 Reply
  • Borza333

    Just listening to the Powers of Ten suite, the man was out of this world. If only he had gone for longer :(

    18 Aug 2012 Reply
  • HoangRobben

    I'am so crazy when listerning his music.

    19 Jun 2012 Reply
  • Zosoman123

    Even after years of listening to him, I am always amazed by his music.

    12 Jun 2012 Reply
  • qwertyage


    18 Apr 2012 Reply
  • KubaNecina


    17 Feb 2012 Reply
  • niQboy

    The greatest always have the least plays. (Lane, Holdsworth, Govan...)

    13 Feb 2012 Reply
  • KubaNecina

    Yes, Buckethead told that Shawn was a greatest musician of all time. He blown mind of John Petrucci, Steve Vai, Allan Holdsworth, Guthrie Govan, Eric Johnson as well as Jason Brecker(or Becker? dont know :D) . All of them are really great players, but in my opinion Shawn was the most original and crossover and because of his technique he was not human. :) Keep on listening to his wonderful music and spam last fm with him!

    5 Feb 2012 Reply
  • Bruneti12

    Shawn is most known for having inspired a lot of awesome guitar players.

    29 Jan 2012 Reply

    Fingers speaking

    2 Jan 2012 Reply
  • KubaNecina

    i know... I know. It is clear :) But I am one of those who exiled to jazz, progressive rock etc. It is just a sad note :)

    29 Nov 2011 Reply
  • Jamesismynamo

    It's pretty obvious why he wasn't as popular. He made jazz music that was a bit inconsistent throughout his career. Satriani, Vai, and Hendrix were all consistent and accessible, but Shawn's music doesn't lend itself to such a wide audience.

    27 Oct 2011 Reply
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