Simon was born in Devon, some would say the closest place to heaven! He grew up in a musical family, learning guitar from a young age alongside his dad and brother. His first forays into worship were at Taw Vale Community Church in the era of the Kendrick classics with chord changes coming thick and fast during the days of ‘the praise march’. The Cross Rhythms music festival provided annual inspiration with bands from around the world visiting Devon’s green and pleasant fields with many staying in the Shaw family home. In his teens, Simon and his brother Andrew played in a number of rock bands, performing a mixture of covers and home-grown songs around the local music scene.
Upon moving to Oxford, Simon bought a beautiful black Takamine guitar and began leading worship in the Christian Union and at Oxford Community Church. It was here that he met Gaynor as they played in different bands together. Simon visited Toronto during the time of ‘the blessing’ and regularly attended the early Cutting Edge events. This was a hugely formative time in terms of seeing the Holy Spirit move powerfully through music.
Since getting married Simon and Gaynor have visited other nations to pray and lead worship, in particular Zambia, France, Spain and North Africa, often travelling with their three girls Olivia, Kirsten, and Evelyn. They are regularly involved in summer festivals including Days of Destiny and Transform where they have had the privilege of playing with some fantastic musicians who have become great friends. It was here that they met Andy and Wendy Green who were instrumental in the recording of The Blue Door album.
During the last decade Simon and Gaynor invested much of their time in leading King’s Bible College and Training Centre where they witnessed the transformative power of the Word and Spirit together in the context of a dynamic worshiping community. The thread of worship woven through their lives continues as they now have the privilege of leading Community Church Derby. Last year God spoke about musicians from around the world coming to Derby and within months it was wonderful to have Rachel join us from Canada. She has become a precious part of our family and it has been a joy to have our home filled with the sound of her beautiful piano playing. It was natural for us to begin writing songs together which express our life with God and to record the results.