Photo by Argenis Apolinario

Kenneth Bentley Jr. was born in Austin, Texas on August 26, 1976.  Raised in Round Rock, Texas, he began playing the tuba at age 11 and graduated from Round Rock High School in 1994. Kenneth studied with Steve Bryant at The University of Texas at Austin and graduated in the spring of 1999 with a Bachelor’s degree in Orchestral Performance. During his summers at UT Austin, he worked for the Walt Disney Company at the theme parks in California, Paris and Tokyo. In the fall of 1999, Kenneth moved from Texas to New York City to study at the Manhattan School of Music with Toby Hanks.  In May of 2001, Kenneth completed his degree program and received a Master’s degree in Classical Music from MSM.

Kenneth is a founding member of the Sugartone Brass Band based in New York City.  He played on Sugartone’s first album “Live in Brooklyn” (2008) and performed and produced the band’s second album “Fourth Man Down” (2012).  Kenneth also performed on and produced Sugartone's third album “Things are not the Same” (2014) and "Live at Vegetable Buddies" (2018).

Kenneth joined the YoungBlood Brass Band in 2004, touring America and Europe from 2004-2007 and 2009. As a member of YoungBlood, he recorded on two of the band’s albums:  “Live. Places.”(2005) and “Is that a Riot?” (2006).

In 2023, Kenneth joined the Radio City Musical Hall Orchestra.  He has also had the pleasure of playing Mira Nair's Monsoon Wedding the Musical at St. Ann's Warehouse (2023) and Jelly's Last Jam at the New York City Center (2024).  Kenneth currently performs with Slavic Soul Party, Howard Fishman and the Biting Fish Brass Band, Red Baraat, and Brass Against.