Award-winning musician Shane Hall will play a live show — a rarity during COVID — at O.P. Rockwell |

Award-winning musician Shane Hall will play a live show — a rarity during COVID — at O.P. Rockwell

Concerts scheduled for March 12 and 13

Shane Hall, whose latest release, "West River Queen," won Best Blues Album at the 2020 San Diego Music Awards, will be the first touring artist to play O.P. Rockwell's basement bar since the coronavirus pandemic hit Park City.
Photo by Danny De La Cruz

Award-winning blues and Americana singer and songwriter Shane Hall is looking forward to playing in Park City.

Hall, who calls Oceanside, California, his home, will play a two-night stand on March 12 and 13 at O.P. Rockwell. These two performances will be the first touring shows to grace the venue’s basement speakeasy since the coronavirus shutdown.

“I’m excited to go play, because I wasn’t sure how long it would be for something like this to be an option,” Hall said, referring to the lack of tours he’s experienced due to the pandemic. “So I can’t wait to get to Park City.”

Still, COVID-19 did provide some time for Hall to beef up the business side of his career.

“My business model is hustle, so that’s what I did,” he said with a giggle. “I took the lemons and made my lemonade, and I spent a lot of time in the studio. I spent a lot of time working on my management and production teams, building access and relationships. By doing this, I somehow stayed current, because people still know my name.”

Hall is a self-taught musician and was surrounded by music at home.

“I’ve always liked the music that was part of my childhood, but it was more a thing you did at church, at school or around the holidays,” he said. “I did listen to my radio, and watch MTV when they played music videos.”

Hall’s mom is a horn player and still plays in a band, but since that type of music didn’t speak to him, he opted not to join his high school band.

Hall’s mother did add some color to his musical palette when she married his step-dad.

“He’s a folk musician, and they played and sang together,” Hall said. “That’s where I got a lot of my Americana roots.”

Still, Hall didn’t consider music a career option until he was in his 20s, after he saw his first two concerts.

“I saw G. Love and Special Sauce in Hollywood, and two days later I saw Dave Matthews Band at Dodger Stadium,” he said. “I really took my time getting into it, and when I did I couldn’t stay away.”

Throughout the years, Hall pieced together his own style through experimentation.

“One of my better assets musically is my ear,” he said. “I can hear things, and I’ll try to recreate them. So if I heard something I liked, I would try to do it.”

Hall would use this method to become a better player.

“If there were elements from a certain style or genre, I would write songs in it, and early in my career I would write beyond my talent level,” he said. “That pushed me to grow and pushed me to be versatile.”

Although many of Hall’s songs may not sound like hip-hop, he is influenced by the genre.

“If you listen closely, you will find the beat and structure and vibe of hip-hop are present in my songs,” he said. “The same goes with rhythm and blues and funk in my slower, jammier songs, and then I’ll go into the dark, outlaw-country route. We’re talking about Johnny Cash and Waylon Jennings.”

Still, Hall doesn’t enjoy playing covers.

“When I play shows, I cater to the environment that I’m booked in, and I will throw in some covers,” he said. “ I’m at the point where people hire me for me, so I don’t have to do a lot of covers, and that’s good because covers are hard. People say, ‘I like how you made that song your own,’ and I say, ‘I’m glad you liked it, because I couldn’t do it the right way.’”

Hall has released four records to date. The first two — “Less than Vintage” and “Thick Teeth” — are his least favorite.

“They are not good,” Hall said, laughing. “They were more about me learning how to do the recording process.”

Hall recorded “Less than Vintage,” a primarily acoustic record, out of necessity.

“I was playing live a lot and I needed something for people to listen to,” he said. “I laid down a few songs. It’s special, because it’s my first, but it won’t win any awards.”

“Thick Teeth” is an electric effort.

“That’s the album I cut my teeth on the blues-rock end of things,” he said. “Since I had limited time and a hired band, I relied on the engineer to make it work.”

Hall’s songwriting bumped up a notch with the release of “Human Condition” in 2017.

“I worked with Kris Towne at Capricorn Studios in San Diego, and he’s a pretty brilliant engineer,” he said. “That’s the first record I’m proud of. I can’t believe it’s been four years.”

Hall’s most recent album is “West River Queen,” which was originally released as three individual extended plays in 2019. The album won the 2020 San Diego Music Awards’ Best Blues Album.

“This is my next-level recording effort, and I tried to make it a nice product for my fans,” he said. “Each word in the title represents a different genre. West is my West oast blues-rock. River is my Americana effort. And Queen is my first funk R & B vibe on record.”

Hall released the records on 10-inch vinyls through Law Records in 2019.

“If you buy the vinyls, you can put them together and make a picture,” he said.

Shane Hall

When: 6:30 p.m. on Friday, March 12, and Saturday, March 13

Where: O.P. Rockwell, lower level, 268 Main St.


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