King Bee & The Stingers
King Bee & The Stingers is a six-piece blues, soul and funk band from Bloomington, Indiana. The group works with Indie Ink Management and publicist Marlene Palumbo. Several KBS singles have been distributed by Sony Orchard and are being played on hundreds of radio stations across the world, including singles from KBS’s second album, “Don’t Move So Fast”, which was completed in early 2023.
King Bee & The Stingers formed in 2006 under the leadership of harmonica player and vocalist Mark "King Bee" Menefee. The band attracted a strong following across Indiana and the Midwest, playing classic, gritty roadhouse blues. In 2015, Mark's daughter Sarah Menefee took over as lead vocalist and has been a rising star ever since. King Bee & The Stingers are 2018, 2019, and 2023 semifinalists in The Blues Foundation’s International Blues Challenge in Memphis, TN.
After playing with the band as a fill-in drummer, Paul Karaffa joined full-time in 2019. In late 2019, bassist Jeff Shew joined the group. He had already worked with band, having written "You're All I Need," the opening track on the band's debut album, "Meet Me In Memphis." The band started writing more original music as it also added more soul, funk and pop to an extensive blues catalog. In 2020, Mark Menefee became the band manager, ceding harmonica duties to veteran harp player Mark Carnes. Keyboardist Wes Schrimsher joined in 2021, and guitarist Matt Boat joined in 2022.
Brown County native Wes Schrimsher trained in piano and saxophone at the Indiana University Music Clinic and Jacobs School of Music throughout high school. Having studied under David Baker and Tom Walsh at Indiana University, Wes launched his music career performing in jazz events hosted by Monika Herzig at Café Django. After high school he attended Berklee College of Music, and lived and performed in New York City for three years. Although classically trained, Wes embraces his stylistic side, playing jazz, R&B and Neo-Soul styles, as he continues to explore and create within the contemporary blues genre.