A celebrated studio band that took the next step and became performers on-stage, the Texas Gentlemen are a group of musicians who backed some of the biggest names in Lone Star music before striking out on their own.
The story of the Texas Gentlemen begins with Beau Patrick Bedford, a multi-instrumentalist, songwriter, and producer from Dallas who first made his way into the music business playing in Jonathan Tyler's road band, the Northern Lights. After heading out on his own in 2009, Bedford started producing sessions for other artists, beginning with R&B vocalist Larry Gee. As Bedford developed a reputation for his production skills with acts such as Kirby Brown, the Dovetails, the Roomsounds, and Paul Cauthen, he began working with an informal collection of local players who showed exceptional versatility and worked well together, developing a cohesive sound that set them apart from the sterile technique of many studio pickers.
While many musicians drifted in and out of Bedford's orbit, the core of the group consisted of Bedford on keyboards, Ryan Ake and Nik Lee on guitars, Daniel Creamer on piano, Scott Lee and Matt McDonald on bass, and Aaron Haynes on drums. The group adopted the the name the Texas Gentlemen, and began playing occasional dates in Dallas, as well as backing up everyone from Ed Sheeran to George Strait. The Texas Gentlemen's public profile got a major boost in 2016, when they were booked to play the Newport Folk Festival and were recruited to serve as the backing band for another artist -- Kris Kristofferson, who was making his first appearance at the festival in 45 years. Kristofferson enjoyed working with the Gentlemen, and hired them to accompany him on tour of venues in Texas.
Later that year, Bedford had booked time at the Fame Recording Studios in Muscle Shoals, Alabama for an artist he was working with. When the artist bailed on the sessions at the last minute, Bedford had a brainstorm -- he invited his fellow Texas Gentlemen and a number of their like-minded friends to come to Muscle Shoals, hole up in the studio, and see what happened. Over the course of four days, the Gentlemen wrote and recorded 28 songs; the bandmembers eventually picked the 11 tracks they liked the best and compiled them into an album, TX Jelly, which was released by New West Records in September 2017. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi