Biography

Throughout his career Gary has been known for his melodic straight ahead bass style, performing a no nonsense approach to the bass. His focus has always been to play what the song calls for, while setting up a solid groove.

Growing up in Southington Connecticut he switched from the guitar to the bass at the age of 15. "I realized that the bass was the thunder behind the music and what you shake your body to. From that time on I fell in love with the low end and set out to shake everywhere I played".

After a short stint at the Berklee College of Music in Boston, he moved to London to pursue his dream of playing progressive rock. He was fortunate enough to play in projects with guitarist Luther Grovesvenor (Spooky Tooth) and MIchael Corby (pre Babys). While playing with Steppenwolf guitarist Michael Monarch and vocalist Jon Hyde, Gary met German drummer Herman Rarebell. They joined forces and formed their own group, TALK.

The group was rounded out with English vocalist Pete French (Cactus) and American guitarist D.H. Cooper.

With the help of the Robert Stigwood Organisation they rehearsed and recorded at CBS Studios London. Unfortunately visa problems forced both Herman and Gary to return to their respective countries. Herman would eventually join the Scorpions.

Returning to Boston Gary joined the group Target which was the original nucleus of what was to become the group New England.

New England, managed by Bill Aucoin (Kiss) was the subject of a 6 major label bidding war. Eventually signing to Infinity/MCA , they hit the top 30 and recorded 3 albums. The group toured North America extensively throughout the next four years.

New England reorganized after the departure of John Fannon replacing him with guitarist Vinnie Cusano. The band moved to Los Angeles and began rehearsing and recording under the new name Warrior. Vinnie was also co-writing with Kiss and was asked to join their band full time as Vinnie Vincent.

With a phone call from English manager Andy Truman Gary was in on the ground floor of a super new group, which Gary named Alcatrazz. The other members of this group were Graham Bonnet (Rainbow) and Jimmy Waldo (New England). Throughout the groups run they hired the likes of Ynwgie Malmsteen, Steve Vai (Frank Zappa), Jan Uvena (Alice Cooper) and Danny Johnson (Derringer). The group went on to earn gold records and become internationally known for their musicianship.

After Alcatrazz Gary teamed up with Swedish guitarist Jonas Hansson and Jan Uvena on drums. They recorded the CD Number One on Apollo records.

In 2015 Gary Shea, D.H. Cooper, Peter French and Herman Rarebell got back together to record under the name Cooper-Shea. The CD, "Partners In Time", features two tracks 'Nickels And Dimes" and "High Danger" with vocalist Peter French. The CD is currently on iTunes etc. with great reviews.

Gary is currently playing live and recording with New England and Alcatrazz. Both bands have just completed tours of Japan and gigs in the U.S.

New England has released a new song on vinyl titled "I Know There`s Something Here" along with a new CD, "Live At The Regent Theater" on King Records.

Alcatrazz will be releasing a live CD and Blu-ray DVD from it`s Japanese performances in 2017, due out at the end of the year.

Gary has also done R&D for Korg U.S.A .He has written bass programs for the AX1B, The Pandora 3, Pandora 4 and the AX3000B bass processors.

Gary endorses Dudacus Basses


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