Shay was born in Dublin, the eldest member of Ireland’s Black Family, which includes sisters Mary Black, and Frances Black. After spending more than 40 years in Dublin and Liverpool immersed in the music of Ireland, Scotland and England, he moved to Berkeley, where he has lived for 25 years. While in Liverpool, he developed a particular interest in music of the sea. He has toured and recorded with the illustrious Stan Hugill, the fabled sea shanty group Stormalong John, and the Irish band Garva. Since living in the US, he’s continued to play and sing in a number of bands, and currently teaches Folk Repertoire at Berkeley’s Freight & Salvage. He tours in the US with his brother Michael as The Black Brothers.