What Shea Norman Has Taught Me About Living My Best Life


In October 2017, I got a message from a dear friend of mine, gospel singer, song writer and artist manager Ted Winn. He’d messaged me to let me know that a mutual friend of ours had died. His name was Shea Norman.

I first heard of Shea back in 2006 when Trevor Williams, David McQueen and I started a bi-monthly (every other month) gospel event called Souled Out. Our aim was to showcase up and coming gospel artists. We would bring one in from the United States as our headline and showcase around 3 other UK artists including spoken word, groups and soloists.

Shea was our first and, at the time, Ted was his manager. You see, we had heard Shea sing and his voice was pure liquid gold. We wanted the UK to hear him because we felt that he had something truly special.

So, in February 2007 Shea and Ted came over and blew us all away. His voice was off the chain and could move you to tears. He had an album that we helped to sell in London, and we took him to a Sunday church to deliver his ministry in song.

There are days when I just want to hear Shea’s voice and, although, he is gone I still have the ability and privilege of hearing his voice through his debut album “My Heart Depends on You.”

Now, it doesn’t matter if you are a believer or not… Shea’s voice transcends religion and touches the soul. He’s on one of gospel legend Fred Hammond’s albums and he sang with soul, conviction and that love of life and talent that comes from within.

So, I suppose you are wondering why I am telling you this…


It struck me the other day as my youngest daughter and I listened to his dulcet tones that Shea was gone but I was still listening to him. It dawned on me that Shea’s life and gift is a message to us all.

We spend a lot of time questioning our skills and talents, we hold back on doing what our heart, skills and talents call us to do. We find ourselves comparing ourselves to others and using that to stop ourselves even trying because… “why bother.”

Shea was only 45 years old when he died and left 4 children behind him. He didn’t become a major gospel singer, but he freely shared his talent and left and indelible mark on those who heard him sing. He only got to record that one album, but that was enough.

So, I implore you, as I implore myself, to get on and make your gifts, talents and skills count. Write that book, record that song, create that masterpiece, invent that product, deliver that service, do that podcast because someone, somewhere needs what you have to offer.

More so when you are gone you will have left a positive mark on this world and something that we may be able to enjoy time and time again even though you are not around.

That is service.

That is legacy.

That is why you are here…to make a difference.

Go listen to Shea’s voice and think of him and then many others who chose to gift their talent to us by sharing it with us in a format that could be accessed time and time again once they were gone.

What will be your legacy, your service, your difference?

Whatever it is step into it unashamed recognising that our world needs it.

Madeline McQueen