Chris’s life was different after that. He got clean, got married, and started his own construction company. It was easy to see God working in his life—his season of spiritual struggle was over. It was only one year later that he fell down an elevator shaft while renovating a building. He was in a coma for six days before he passed away on Christmas Day. It changed Shane’s life forever.
The early years of Shane’s life were marked by discovery. He found God and chose to become a believer at age 12. He found a love for music and chose to join the drumline. Those years were a blur of worship and leadership, creating the foundation of his lifetime love of music. It was the beginning of an industry, but it took one specific event to pull it all into focus—the concert.
Shane thought about that night as he sat in the hospital, his brother on his deathbed. He found comfort in knowing Chris was saved. “I wanted to get serious about my future after seeing him get taken away so early,” Shane shares. “The vision of seeing him run up to an altar during a concert that changed his life—I remember thinking I would want to be a part of something like that, something so impactful. It was the beginning of how God planted this dream in me.”
Even with his faith, this season of Shane’s life was a struggle. He dropped out of high school and worked a few odd jobs before landing at a plywood factory called Louisiana Pacific. “I didn’t get to go to college, but the factory prepared me for the next 20 years of my life,” says Shane. “It was there that I learned how to work hard, be responsible, and know the value of a dollar.”
His time at LP stretched on for nine years. It was a long season of discontent—hard work without a vision. He climbed the ladder from the clean-up crew to an office job. He was successful, but the Christian music industry pressed on his heart and mind. “My boss overheard me talking about what I wanted to do in the break room,” says Shane. “It made him mad, hearing me talking about it. He said ‘When are you going to stop talking about it, and when are you going to do it?’ I was dreaming my dream, not doing my dream.”
That’s when Shane decided pursuing his passion was worth the risk—he began a season of growth and grinding. He had conversations, made connections, and made things happen. Through his work at LP, he had formed a friendship with a salesman who knew about his vision. He put Shane in touch a musician named Randy Williams. “I called Randy and told him the story about my brother. He said ‘I’m on tour, and I can’t help you, but let me give you a number of another guy who can,’” says Shane.
That’s how Shane met Wes Yoder, a legend who built one of the first Christian booking agencies. “If I had a question over the next few years, Wes was a resource,” Shane shares. “He even invited me to Nashville to spend a weekend with his family, and he gave me goals and pointers on how to get started.”
The first event Shane put together was a local music concert scheduled for September 17, 2001. He had been planning it for months before 9/11, and it turned out to be just what the community needed after the tragedy. “People were worried about their future, but they all came together at this concert,” Shane says. “I saw God work—the timing was so powerful. I got down on my knees backstage, and there was a huge american flag that I was kneeling behind, and I remember telling God that night—if I could do this the rest of my life, I would be so grateful.”
That glimpse of his dream—seeing so many people experience a breakthrough like Chris had—encouraged him to continue working hard and making connections. Eventually Shane was connected with Jeff Roberts and Associates. “My best friend gave me a tip. He said ‘There’s a new band being played on the radio, and you should book them,’” says Shane. “It just so happened that the band was with Jeff Roberts, so I talked to them and they let me book a show for them in Birmingham.”
That band was Casting Crowns, and the show Shane booked for them sold out in a single week. They added a second show, and that one sold out too. Shane was a first time promoter, but he made more money that one night than he made in a year at the factory. “That’s when I realized I could make a living off of this kind of work,” he says.
It took patience, persistence, and encouragement, but Shane’s vision led him on a long journey to a new season of life—one full of success. He began promoting Casting Crowns shows all over the south. “They got bigger than me and could have left me at any time, but they decided to invest in me and let me grow with them. Next thing you know, I’m promoting shows across the southeast. I booked Chris Tomlin, Mercy Me, Jeremy Camp, and others.”
He was the first Christian promoter to use Facebook, and his innovation did not go unnoticed. “I got a call one day from one of my competitors—the largest christian promoter in the world, Premier Productions. We met, and they asked me if I would merge with them. I did, and that was 13 years ago. Since then, the company has grown about five times what it was. We went from doing 100 shows a year to 600 shows a year. We do festivals and conferences, we have a management company in house, a ticketing division—we have everything.”
Shane has been a game changer and innovator, but he isn’t finished yet. “At 39 I decided to start a management company called Round Table to develop new artists and talent to give them an opportunity to do what they love,” Shane explains.
Round Table boasts names outside of music, such as comedian John Crist, as well as musicians bringing a new edge to Christian music, such as Lindy and The Circuit Riders. “We want people to leave our events knowing they can accomplish anything in life. People who deliver that message, that’s the kind of artist we want to invest in,” Shane explains.
Accepting the reality of life’s highs and lows is something Shane has learned well. You can’t always see around the corner. Sometimes you get stuck in a difficult season of life, and sometimes you are stuck for years. Your winter may be long, but spring will come. If you keep planting seeds of action, eventually you will start to grow.
Chris Quick found salvation at a concert, and now Shane is bringing that experience to millions of people all over the world. He’s humbled by the opportunity. “My story isn’t just my story,” he says. “It’s a lot of people that invested in me and came along at the perfect time to help me on my journey. I can’t take credit for much—God has been ten steps ahead of me all the way.”
God may be ten steps ahead, but Shane is fast on his feet and ready to follow. He may not always know what season lies ahead, but he’s already chosen to take it on.