The Wilder Blue began in 2019 when Zane Williams, already a road-worn troubadour with seven solo albums under his belt, pulled together a hand-picked group of multi-talented musicians from the Texas music scene. Their debut album Hill Country in 2020 and 2022’s follow-up The Wilder Blue both feature five-part harmonies interwoven with bluegrass-influenced arrangements of folk-rock and country songs, garnering comparisons to early Eagles and 80’s-era Alabama.

For their newest release Super Natural in the fall of 2023, the band enlisted grammy-nominated Brent Cobb to produce the album and perform on the title track, which they co-wrote together in the studio. Brent’s groovy vintage-country sensibilities proved a natural fit for a band with influences as diverse as Little Feat, Del McCoury, and Robert Earl Keen. A cover of the Eagle’s classic “Seven Bridges Road” also features band admirer Luke Combs, who added The Wilder Blue to his stadium tour lineup in 2025.

Twenty years before he was fronting a break-out band, Texas native Zane Williams was a solo coffee-house performer and aspiring songwriter in Nashville. After moving back to Texas in 2008 he eventually became a dancehall staple and respected songwriter with cuts by the likes of Pat Green, Kevin Fowler, and Cody Johnson. To the surprise of his fans (and the bemusement of his booking agent), Zane announced the formation of the new group in 2019 by soliciting band names from his fans and promising lifetime free tickets to anyone whose suggestion was picked. (The winning name “Hill Country” had to be changed just after the release of their first album due to a trademark conflict but the winner is still on the guest list for life!)

Multi-instrumentalist, singer and songwriter Andy Rogers was the only member of the Zane Williams band to come along for the new group. Born and raised in Lebanon, TN, Rogers learned bluegrass chops from an early age and excelled on bass, banjo, dobro, guitar, and just about anything with strings. Rogers moved to Denton, TX in 2004 to study jazz bass at the University of North Texas and made a long-term home in the artsy community he found there, playing in a series of rock and country gigs that eventually led to joining the Zane Williams band on bass and vocals in 2016.

Looking over the Texas music scene for likely bandmates, Williams sent a text out of the blue to a singer-songwriter and lead guitar player whose voice had caught his ear a few years before on local radio. Paul Eason was ensconced at the time in a comfortable guitar gig with Texas staple Kevin Fowler but was immediately intrigued by the notion of joining forces. Originally from Houston, TX but living at the time in San Antonio, Eason fronted various bands beginning in his teens and released two solo albums in the 00’s before joining the Fowler band full time. A third solo album followed in 2016, which showcased his distinctive lead vocals, southwestern aesthetics, and impeccable guitar playing.

Eason vividly recalled once meeting a singing drummer named Lyndon Hughes who had been with the Roger Creager band, and he and Williams looked him up at a studio in the Woodlands, TX where Hughes was working as an engineer, producer, drummer, and vocalist. Singing together that day on a new song Williams had written called “Dixie Darlin’”, the three knew they were onto something special. Hughes, a Houston native, brought a wide range of skills to the project. His effortless harmony vocals and versatile drumming combined with his ears as an engineer and producer would end up having an outsized affect on the sound of the band.

After an experimental jam session and some casual demo recordings in 2019, the four existing members agreed that Rogers was best utilized playing primarily banjo and dobro which meant the search was on for a permanent bass player to round out the band. After several months and at least two dead ends, the band reluctantly proceeded with their first album without a dedicated bass player. With the first gig only a few months away, the pressure was building to find someone—-anyone—-who could fill the role. Which is when the perfect person happened to come along.

Only in his mid-20s, Sean Rodriguez had already been both a road dog and a fixture in the live music scene of Austin, TX. Originally from Corpus Christi, TX Rodriguez grew up playing everything from funk to rock to cojunto to country. It’s a diversity reflected in his flamboyant dress and vintage playing style, delivered on stage with a boot-scootin’ joie-de-vivre that quickly earned him the nickname “The Boogie Man”. The four existing band members asked Rodriguez to join them in the studio and play on the final two songs of the first record to see how it went. Shortly after he arrived, there in the lobby of the studio, the five members of the Wilder Blue first gathered around to sing something together. “Let’s try “Seven Bridges Road”, someone suggested. The blend was magic, and the chill bumps on their arms are the same ones they’re now giving fans at venues all over the nation.