Shane Steven Filan (born 5 July 1979) is an Irish singer and songwriter. He is one of the two lead singers of boy band Westlife, which was formed in 1998, disbanded in 2012, and regrouped in 2018. Westlife have released thirteen albums, embarked on twelve world tours, and won several awards, becoming one of the most successful musical groups of all time. Shane Filan Biography
Filan has released three solo albums: You and Me (2013), Right Here (2015) and Love Always (2017). He has appeared fourteen times in the UK Singles Chart with number-one hits, making him one of the most-appeared Irish music artists in British music number-one singles history.
Shane Steven Filan was born on 5 July 1979, in Sligo, Ireland. He is the son of Peter and Mae Filan (née McNicholas). Filan is the youngest of seven siblings; three brothers and three sisters. From a very early age, Filan worked behind the counter of his parents’ business- a diner in Sligo -including on school Holidays.
He attended primary school at a local Catholic school, and secondary school at Summerhill College, with future Westlife bandmates Kian Egan and Mark Feehily. All three of them participated in a school production of Grease. The Hawkswell Theatre became a significant part of their careers.
Filan was a fan of Michael Jackson as a child, and claimed the singer inspired him to pursue a career in music. Before Westlife, he studied business and accounting.
Six as One, IOYOU and Westlife (1997–2012)
Before Westlife, Egan and Feehily were with Filan in a band known as Six as One and. Later on, IOYOU, with other Sligonians Derrick Lacey, Graham Keighron, and Michael “Miggles” Garrett. He co-wrote the IOYOU song Together Girl Forever.
For six months, Shane’s mother, Mae Filan, tried to phone Boyzone manager Louis Walsh. Eventually succeeding in talking to him about her son’s band. Three of the members were dropped. The other three, Filan, Egan, and Feehily, joined in finding two more singers for the band. The members that joined were Nicky Byrne and Brian McFadden, forming Westside.
Westside / Westlife
The name of the band was subsequently changed to Westlife. There were already a number of bands with the name Westside. Filan, along with Feehily, became the co-lead singers of the band. Their first album was released in November 1999, titled Westlife.
With Westlife, Filan has received twenty-eight platinum discs and sold 55 million records worldwide. In his 2014 book My Side of Life, he revealed that in 2001, he had been the first member of Westlife to be offered a solo record deal. But that he had rejected it, as he was scared of going solo.
Solo career, You and Me (2012–2014)
On 20 October 2011, Westlife announced that they had decided to split and go their separate ways. This was at the end of their 2012 Farewell Tour. Filan showed interest in being a solo music artist for his daily living. In December 2011, press reports announced Filan was close to signing a solo deal. He was said to be signing it with one of several potential competing UK record labels. Filan and his manager Louis Walsh, had been in talks with several of the labels at the time. “There’s four, possibly five labels so far who have made it clear that they want to sign Shane,” said a music source to showbiz writer Paul Martin.
In a March 2012 interview with Paul Martin, Filan said he would be signing within the next few weeks.
“It’s exciting but, of course, I’ll be nervous. It’s only natural when you’re coming out of a band after 14 years, you don’t know where your life’s going to take you […]
In 2013, Filan announced he had officially signed a record deal with UMG subsidiary London Records worth 20 million British pounds.
UMG had previously offered him a solo deal in 2001; the first member of Westlife to have received such an offer, but turned it down. For the new deal, Filan stated that he had spent the past 12 months in both US and UK writing songs and recording, and that a forthcoming single and an album would be released later in the year.
On 10 May 2013, he announced that his first single would be released. Along with three other tracks, later revealed in July to be “Everything to Me”, and “Everytime”, “Today’s Not Yesterday” and “Once”, respectively. The release date was announced as 25 August.
On 10 September 2013, Filan released About You. The second single from his album You and Me, followed by the album shortly after.
Right Here (2015)
It was after the Westlife split, bankruptcy, the You and Me Tour, and his debut autobiography My Side of Life. Shane announced on 13 March 2015 that he was working on his second studio album, Right Here. The album was mostly recorded in London and Denmark. It featured collaborations with Cutfather (The Saturdays, JLS), Jez Ashurst (Will Young, Gabrielle Aplin), Jon Maguire (Union J), Tre Jean-Marie (MNEK, Jason Derulo), and Girls Aloud. The album was released on 25 September 2015, reaching #1 on the Irish Album Charts during its first week.
Love Always (2017–2018)
On 25 August 2017, Filan released his third studio album Love Always. He also announced his next tour, the Love Always Tour 2017.
Previously, in April 2010, an unreleased solo song by Filan called Beautiful in White leaked on the Internet. However it was incorrectly credited as being recorded by Shayne Ward instead of Filan. During this time, Filan also did a duet with Irish country singer Nathan Carter. The album reached #5 in the UK Album Charts. Making it his highest-charting album in the United Kingdom, and therefore making him the most successful Westlife member as a solo artist in the charts to date.
In 2018, Filan also had success in Asia, including the Philippines, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, and South Korea. Beautiful in White was particularly successful in Asia.
Westlife reunion with new single, album, and tour (2018–present)
On 3 October 2018 Westlife announced their reunion as a four-member band. Ed Sheeran penned four of the singles that were released in 2019. The group embarked on a hugely successful 50 date tour. Called “The 20 Tour”, in honor of Westlife’s 20th anniversary since the release of their first single in 1999. Their 13th album Spectrum was released on 15 November
Filan married his childhood sweetheart, Gillian Walsh on 28 December 2003 at Ballintubber Abbey. The wedding was followed by a reception at Ashford Castle, Ireland. Gillian is the cousin of fellow band member Kian Egan, making Filan and Egan cousins-in-law. They have three children: daughter Nicole Rose (born on 23 July 2005 in Sligo, Ireland). And sons Patrick Michael, (born on 15 September 2008 in Sligo, Ireland) and Shane Peter (born 22 January 2010). Peter is named after his father.
He and his eldest brother, Finbarr, ran Shafin Developments – a property development company. The company was placed in receivership in May 2012. Filan was declared bankrupt a little over a month later after suffering losses in Ireland’s property crash.