Shaun Brantley of Port Orange is not your ordinary pool cleaning guy.
Far from it.
The mild mannered 35-year-old, who cleans pools by day for Pinch a Penny, is also an accomplished musician who already has one album out and is working on a second one. He also has five college degrees, including two master’s degrees and served as a U.S. Army sergeant in both Iraq and Afghanistan. He is also a published author.
Mr. Brantley plays a multitude of musical instrument, but is especially adept at piano, organ and electric piano. The singer/songwriter/performer/producer prefers the musical genres of jazz, blues and soul.
“When I was 17, I graduated high school early with an associate degree and hopped on in the military as a chemical systems specialist,” he said. “I did a tour in Iraq doing that job. I came home for a while and was in the reserves and driving parasailing boats. After a while I finished up my master’s degree in behavioral analysis and swapped over to doing psychological operations with the Army. I did a tour in Afghanistan with that.
His tour in Afghanistan changed his perspective.
“I was raised in a Christian home. When I was oversees, they were handing out these little pocket bibles. I put it in my cargo pocket and went about my business,” he said. “We ended up taking fire when we were out on patrol and more or less being held up in a little bit of a shack, like a shed you see in anybody’s backyard. I noticed that the Bible had fallen out of my pocket. When I went down to pick it up, bullets sprayed across the wall where we were standing. If I hadn’t bent over to pick up that Bible, I might not be here today.”
He started thinking that maybe he needed to get into “serving and helping souls instead of taking souls.”
When he got back stateside, he pursued a master’s degree in Christian leadership, started an online podcast delivering sermons and wrote a book, “A Fruitful Foundation.” He cleaned pools as a teenager and fell back into that line of work with Pinch a Penny, which gave him “a really great offer he couldn’t turn down” and it also allowed him an opportunity to serve people, which he really wanted to do.
“Even though it seems minute, some people really appreciate having a clean pool to come home to,” he said.
As to his music, he met Victor Wainwright, an award-winning blues musician when he was 15 at an open mike night. After impressing Mr. Wainwright with his ability to pick up tunes instantly just by hearing them once, Mr. Brantley was able to spend some time with him learning even more about music and the entertainment business. He started his own band and played up and down the East Coast as well as in New Orleans, Chicago and New York. Once in the military, he won a talent contest and played in a soldier’s show.
Mr. Brantley stated that over time and after having children (he has three) he didn’t want to play in nightclubs and bars, especially after getting more involved in Christianity.
“I didn’t want to be smelling like whiskey and cigarettes all the time,” he said.
Mr. Brantley returned to Florida a couple of years ago, he said. “I’m happy to be back to a beach with an ocean.”
He invested in the equipment needed to create a recording studio in his home to focus on the production side of the industry. He wants to help others get their demos out there.
His album, “From the Bottom,” is available at Amazon and iTunes. He is working on an extended play album, which will have four to five songs on it entitled “Take Me Home.”
Besides Mr. Wainwright, he lists Charles Brown as a role model.
For more information, call (717) 819-6315 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.