|Shonn Hinton has traveled the world as the guitarist for Grammy award winning musicians including Patti LaBelle, Jill Scott, John Legend and Mary J Blige, to name a few. He has played hundreds of arenas around the world to tens of thousands of music fans….but it wasn’t “home”. Wanting to get back to his roots, and support local musicians and his Milwaukee community, he thought “why search the world for great musicians when they’re right in your own backyard?” He then formed the super powerhouse group, Shotgun.|
Although the group had played together for over a decade in Milwaukee, they decided to emerge into their own band that would headline tours, showcasing their pocketed, classic sound. Shotgun’s opportunity to shine came when they performed songs live from Shonn Hinton’s 2014 instrumental Gospel, Rock and Blues album “The Happy Hour LP.” The reaction from their fan base sealed the deal as their supporters were avidly amazed, along with the movers and shakers of the music industry.
Shotgun debuted their first full length album in 2016 with musicians Shonn Hinton, Olen Franklin, Darrien Williams, Alex Julien, Afton Johnson, Sean Williamson, Randy Kombrec and Terry Jeans Jr., the album delivered music’s next great awakening. The band has tightened up to the original 5, and is about to deliver their second full length album.
“Reloaded”, due out in 2020, promises a full gamut of musical onslaught. The band includes so much of their personal styles, that blues-rock may be an overall introduction to the sound, but therein lays such a diversity of sound & influence throughout the record that it needs to be heard by music lovers all over the world
Shonn has played stadiums world wide performing alongside many Grammy award winning artists including Mary J Blige, John Legend, Jill Scott, 112, Patti Labelle, Jay Z, Lil Wayne, Gym class hero’s and Carol King. He leading his band Shotgun on the road to world wide recognition, and their name in lights.
Shonn is endorsed by: Schecter Guitars, Ernieball String, Kirlin Cables and Line 6
Olen Franklin was born January 6, 1981. He was inspired by music at an young age. He picked up the drum sticks at the age of four years old. By the time he was twelve Olen recorded his first studio session with a local gospel group from Milwaukee, WI. From that moment, Olen has become one of Milwaukee prominent drummers. He plays all styles of music including jazz, gospel, funk, reggae, Latin, and blues. He works with several bands in Milwaukee and is the music director for Milwaukee R&B Live which is an monthly event that showcases Milwaukee’s top talent. Olen has performed with many great gospel icons such as Edwin Hawkins, Kim Burrell, Marvin Sapp, Vashawn Mitchell and Jonathan Nelson just to name a few. Olen has traveled all across the country working with different artists. He continues to strive to become a drum icon for youth to look up to.
Alex “Ace Boogie” Julien
A Milwaukee native, involvement with music was established early around the age 6 years. He began playing the drums at church where his grandfather Bishop William T. Smith is the pastor. As his love for music and natural ability to play various instruments continued to grow, so did his curiosity for learning. He attended Milwaukee High School of the Arts where he was able to continue to develop his craft through being exposed to various genres of music and styles. After playing drums, and lead guitar for some time, Alex found his feel for the bass guitar. Alex has played for various artist and groups around the city of Milwaukee and has drawn inspiration from Artist such as D’Angelo, Marvin Gaye, John Coltrane , Donny Hathaway, Prince and many others. Alex plays with the concept of music being a universal language that can not only connect individuals but also change lives as it did his! As he often states “Music saved my life.”
Darrien “Dwill” Williams
DWill was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and grew up in a home where music was a staple. He learned the guitar at eleven years old. His father, a lead guitarist, bassist, and vocalist for over thirty years taught him the fundamentals of playing multiple musical instruments. His insatiable appetite for learning has inspired him to play the piano, organ, keyboards, bass guitar, drums and the trumpet.
He began playing publicly in 1996, when he joined his father’s gospel quartets, Gospel Melodies and The Hughes Singers. Today, he has a masterful gospel sound that falls somewhere between Jazz and R&B. He has been the Minister of Music for many Milwaukee area churches, and now plays and teaches music at Restoration Church of Milwaukee. As an in demand versatile musician, DWill plays a plethora of genres, from gospel, jazz, hip hop,
rock, pop and country. He has played many venues locally and across the country. He has performed in stage plays and also played with national recording artist Wyclef Jean.
As well as being a truly unique guitarist, his amazing drive and creative vision will insure the development of new sounds and musical cultures. His passion for music and education will honor the memory of his father for decades to come.
Terry Jeanes Jr.
T. Jeanes was born in Milwaukee Wisconsin, he grew up singing and playing drums in church. He has played with some of Milwaukee’s finest bands and has also accompanied them with his voice. His musical influences are Marvin Gaye, Donny Hathaway, and anything from rock to bluegrass!