Thereâs Armin, thereâs Above & Beyond, and then thereâs Shane 54. Shane is a legend by all standards, being 1/2 one electronic musicâs biggest international duos, Myon & Shane 54, who dominated the world trance music for nearly a decade. With hits like and the euphoric remix to , these guys definitely left an unforgettable imprint in the scene. They split nearly two years ago (more on that later), with each going their separate ways, and for Shane, it was quite an intense journey to get to where he is now.Â
Shane has been a busy man this year, with some huge releases including his retake on the classic and his collaboration on Armada that also was featured on Arminâs A State Trance 2018 – Ibiza compilation album. I was honored to be able to interview Shane, one my personal heroes, about this journey, especially dealing with the departure from Myon & Shane 54, sorting through additional life-changing issues, healing, and getting back to himself to where heâs now in charge a highly successful radio show, International Departures, just provided the Anjunabeats Worldwide mix, and is releasing his biggest track yet, âOut Timeâ, with Cubicore and Eric Lumiere.
âInternational Departuresâ has been a trending radio show on Mixcloud for some time now, and now youâve added a live video element. Can you tell us a little more about that?
Iâve always wanted to do something that hasnât been done before. The âInternational Departuresâ format hasnât really changed since 2009 and it was time to do something new, something fresh. Itâs a huge opportunity to do go deeper with a radio show. Iâve always wanted to do this, itâs always been in the back my head to have a visual companion to the mixes, but Iâve never taken the brave step to go forward and do it until now.
These video episodes are unlike any other show, since no one else has a full on one hour video to every single episode. Itâs a huge amount fun! Iâm actually getting myself an animator program, which Iâm really excited about, so I can execute my newly found visions.
You were a part Trance musicâs most successful international duoâs and it all seemed to end instantly. How did the breakup impact you? How did it affect your life?
When MS54 broke up it was really hard. Even though the end was inevitable, when it was over, it was still a shock. We let our fans down and I still felt horrible about it. At the same time, my marriage fell apart and it was all so overwhelming.
At the end, it was really bad. Itâs very hard to imagine how being in an international DJ duo could be bad for you but trust me, it can be if things arenât going smoothly. Youâre touring all the time, doing whatever you can to not face the harsh reality that you know this thing is falling apart. Thereâs a lot strain that you hope people wonât notice, pressure to keep releasing new singles, and through all it you can get to a very bad place where you find yourself drinking so much, just to cope, that you donât even realize how much youâre drinking.
I think a lot DJâs go through this phase having to cope with tough things and again, it sounds so harsh because people think itâs such a glamorous lifestyle, but you can really get depressed out there. Depression was knocking on my door, and I answered.Â It took a toll in every facet my life. It took at least a year and a half until I could take a breath and sort out my personal issues.
How did you manage to get through all this, the divorce, the drinking, the breakup, and then make it back creating music and being an artist?
When MS54 was over I was a mess personally and pressionally. Everything was all over the place and I couldnât find the way out. In addition to my band breaking up, I had a daughter to support, a soon to be ex-wife I was constantly battling with, and I had way too many feelings that I wasnât dealing with.Â Frankly, I didnât even know what to take care or cry about first. I had to sit back and seriously rethink everything, starting with my personal life. I had to face my problems head on.Â I had to go through a phase where literally everybody disappeared around me, just a handful people stayed. I had to focus on my daughter and being the best dad I could be. . I finally got separated, I started to build my own life up again and finally the songs started to emerge. Itâs funny, as I started to feel whole as a person, it was then that I started to rediscover my creative voice.
What I learned is that sometimes you need a little time and a little space away from everything. Sometimes life just lets you know when you need to take a pause and sit down and think. By the end 2017 when the âReturn To Loveâ record came out on Armada, that was the first point when I started to realize âhey, I might have something againâ.
If youâre not right in your soul, you can only make broken music, and I donât think thatâs the kind music that I want to make.
Your brand new single, âOut Of Timeâ, with Cubicore & Eric Lumiere came out today! How did all this come together?
âOut Of Timeâ has a special sound and special vibe and overall it sounds like a big hit to me. The track actually started around a vocal demo that I had sung. The Cubicore guys, who Iâm good friends with, and I kept hammering away at it until we got to the point that the track surpassed the quality the song I was signing. We knew then that we needed someone special to write a vocal that would finish the quest for the perfect song. Thatâs when Eric came in and delivered.
I was a huge fan already when we first talked on the phone, but when he sent me his first demo, I was simply and utterly blown away. I remember I was like âholyyyy sh!t!â Even in its demo form, it was breathtaking. When I gave the song to Jono a month ago, the track emerged on ABGT almost immediately, and Iâm so happy we now get to release it. It feels like this is finally me, back.