Shawn Conley studied with George Wellington, Sr. for the first five years of his life as a bass player. During that time he won a position in the Honolulu Symphony, and both the State and Southwest divisions of the MTNA solo staring competition. He went on to earn a Bachelor of Music degree at Rice University's Shepherd School of Music, under the tutelage of Paul Ellison. Shawn was awarded a Wagoner Fellowship to study a year in Paris, where he received both performance and teaching diplomas from Francois Rabbath. Uopn returning from Europe, Mr. Conley returned to Rice University to work with Paul Ellison toward his Master of Music degree. In June 2007, he was a winner in the International Society of Bassists Scott LaFaro Jazz competition.