Who is Shay Mooney?
James Shay Mooney was born on 27 December 1991, in Arkansas, USA, and is a singer as well as a songwriter, best known for being half of the duo Dan + Shay. The two rose to fame in 2013 after the release of their debut single, which led to their first album. Since then, the group has made multiple musical releases.
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The Wealth of Shay Mooney
As of early-2020, Shay Mooney’s net worth is estimated to be over $1 million, earned through a successful career in the music industry over the last decade. Most of his wealth can be attributed to the success of Dan + Shay, though he’s also had a few solo or collaborative songwriting projects.
The two have done several tours, which has also helped them reach their current financial status.
Early Life, Education, and Career Beginnings
Shay grew up in Natural Dam, Arkansas and where he attended Union Christian Academy. He then attended Van Buren High School which as the name denotes, is located in Van Buren, Arkansas. While growing up, he developed a strong interest in music, but after matriculating from high school, he contemplated college education and decided to go through with it, enrolling at Valley Forge Christian College, now known as The University of Valley Forge (UVF).
The school is known for its association with the Assemblies of God, which is a large Pentecostal denomination. However, he wasn’t set on his studies, as more prospects for music career loomed over him, so after a year he dropped out to fully focus on music, starting his career collaborating with then-girlfriend Veronica Ballestrini.
Solo Artist and the Formation of Dan + Shay
Shay uploaded covers of various popular songs through the online platform YouTube, which has been a stepping stone for many aspiring singers. He uploaded videos of himself doing covers alongside Ballestrini which found popularity, and she later released a solo album for which he received a few songwriting credits.
With his skills in singing and songwriting, he was later signed to Nappy Boy Entertainment which is owned by artist T-Pain; the other well-known artists on the label include Travie McCoy and Gym Class Heroes.
Around this time, his future partner Dan Smyers was also making his way through the entertainment industry, and was a member of the Floodgate Records-signed band called Transition. He later became a member of another group called Bonaventure which associations would lead them to meet. Sharing the same love for singing and songwriting, the duo quickly went to songwriting together.
Their first effort was considered by the group Rascall Flatts, and after a few months, many labels were looking to sign them as a pair. Eventually, they accepted an offer to work for Warner/Chappell Music, one of the largest publishing companies in the world.
Rise to Fame
In 2013, Dan + Shay released their first single called “19 You + Me”, written by the duo with the help of Danny Orton, which got some airtime on country radio, attracted positive reviews and was even praised by the publication “Taste of Country”. A few months later, their debut album was released called “Where It All Began”, which had production credits by Scott Hendricks who is known for producing many hits of the 1990s.
In mid-2014, they released another single called “Show You Off” and held their first televised performance on “The Ellen Show”.
They also made their debut on the weekly stage concert “Grand Ole Opry”. With the amount of success they were getting in a short period, the duo was nominated for a Vocal Duo of the Year award during the Academy of Country Music Awards held during the same year. In early-2015, they released their third single called “Nothin’ Like You” which reached the top of the Country Airplay chart, and concurrently they toured as the opening act for Hunter Hayes, and also opened during Blake Shelton’s Ten Times Crazier Tour.
They then had their first headlining tour, which had them perform 10-dates to promote their album.
After their solo tour, the duo went on tour once more with Hunter Hayes in his Tattoo (Your Name) Tour. From the middle of 2015, they held the Just the Right Kind of Crazy Tour, which saw them perform across the US. The following year, they released a new single called “From the Ground Up” which promoted their upcoming album, releasing “How Not To” a few months later, followed by their third album – “Road Trippin” in 2017.
In 2018, Shay and Dan announced plans for a third album, and meantime released the single “Tequila”. Their self-titled album was released a few months later, just as “Tequila” reached the top 40 of the US Billboard Hot 100, their biggest hit so far. They also collaborated with Kelly Clarkson for the song “Keeping Score”, before in 2019 announced that they were working on a new song in collaboration with singer Justin Bieber. The song “10,000 Hours” was released just a few days after Bieber’s wedding, and debuted in fourth spot on the Billboard Hot 100.
While Shay got a bit of attention during his relationship with Veronica Ballestrini, the couple eventually broke up and embarked on separate music careers. He later began a relationship with former Miss Arkansas Hannah Billingsley, and the couple announced their engagement in 2016. A few months they had a son, and married later in 2017. They now have two children, and reside in Arkansas.