Prior to the formation of Parmalee, Matt and Scott performed with their father in a group entitled the Jerry Thomas and the Thomas Brothers Band. When their father retired, they wanted to continue spreading the gift of music so they started Parmalee. Parmalee originally and always has consisted of Matt and Scott Thomas, Josh McSwain, and Barry Knox. All members of Parmalee are able to play multiple musical instruments. Their first EP was titled Daylight. The band drew attention from producer David Bendeth of RCA. Bendeth invited Parmalee to record three songs at Water Music Studios in Hoboken, NJ., which led to a publishing deal with Los Angeles-based Windswept Publishing. Following the publishing deal came an invitation from Bendeth to record the remainder of the 12 songs that comprise the band's full-length debut album, Inside. Following the release, Parmalee spent nearly 2 years touring and promoting their album.
Parmalee also released a live acoustic album entitled "Unplugged" and a documentary-style DVD "Inside Live." In 2006, the band went to Los Angeles to begin recording with producer Stevo Bruno. The band split their time between touring the East coast and recording in California. Nikki Sixx, bassist of Mötley Crüe, collaborated with Parmalee on several tracks, both writing and producing. Parmalee recorded the majority of the tracks in Los Angeles, then travelled to Nashville to write, produce, and mix the remainder of the record with producer Kevin Beamish. Parmalee released their EP Complicated in 2008.
In October 2010, the band were the victims of an attempted robbery. They had just finished playing at The Money, a local bar directly across from Winthrop University (in Rock Hill, SC), and were in their RV when two suspects, Dytavis Hinton and Demario Burris, entered the vehicle with a handgun demanding money. At this time, drummer Scott Thomas came out from the back of the bus with his own gun and told them to leave. The gunman, Burris, opened fire and Scott was shot in the leg, stomach, and shoulder. Returning fire, both suspects were hit, with Burris being killed and Hinton wounded. Thomas was in critical condition after the gunshot wound and was hospitalized in Charlotte, NC for 35 days - 10 of which he spent in a coma. By May 2011, Scott was well enough to get behind a drum kit for the first time and the band finally performed their promised label showcase. He has since made a full recovery.
Stoney Creek Records
While in Nashville, the band met David Fanning from New Voice Entertainment at Sound Stage Studios. Alongside David the band recorded their hit "Musta Had a Good Time" in the back of their RV. The song led to both their production and record deals.
The inspiration for "Musta Had a Good Time" came right from their own lives. When the band formed, they all moved into the same house and parties happened almost every night. Scott clarifies: "I can say the car wasn't in the pool. My friend drove his truck into a small creek. That actually happened. We had to get a tractor to pull it out." And when they shot the video, another party broke out until the owner of the house where the video was being shot asked them to leave. The band got kicked out of their own video shoot. "'Musta Had a Good Time' describes that one epic party that all of us have either been to -- or hope to go to -- at some point in our lives," says Matt. "It's that one party that becomes a legend in a small town. The response that we get from fans when we play this song live is crazy -- the fans know all the words and everyone's dancing, and it becomes a party on stage and in the crowd. We're finding out that there's a lot of people out there who really like to have a good time."
In June 2012, the band was featured as a Billboard “Bubbling Under” artist. A live performance video for the song debuted on AOL's TheBoot.com in July 2012 and the music video debuted in August 2012
They were featured as Clear Channel’s NEW! Artist to Watch (Country) and the song was picked as one of CountryMusicIsLove.com's Top 15 Songs of Summer. "Taste of Country" gave the single two stars out of five.
Their second Stoney Creek single, "Carolina", was released to country radio on February 4, 2013.