This year’s Relays concert opener, the 90’s cover band All Things King, features the Director of Career Services for the School of Journalism and Mass Communication, Timm Pilcher.
“I guess Isaac Newsome [the Director of Student Life] heard I was in a band, and I told him I was in a couple,” Pilcher said. “I actually gave him a card for my other band, Faculty Lounge, and he must’ve given that to Cloey Tuttle…but she actually reached out to me about ATK.”
Cloey Tuttle, one of the two concert co-chairs on the Student Activities Board alongside Layla Kostusak, said they chose ATK purposefully because they thought Drake students would be excited to see a member of the Drake faculty perform.
“We wanted to find a way to incorporate the Drake community into the concert,” Tuttle said. “What better way to bring Drake’s campus and Relays together than with All Things King?”
According to Tuttle, the student body’s excitement over ATK’s performance far exceeded their expectations.
“The reaction All Things King got at Blitz Day was amazing,” she said. “We could tell the Drake student body is super excited for this, and I personally can’t wait to see them perform.”
Pilcher said he and his band, also consisting of his wife Katie on bass and their friend Dan Pardock on drumset, are equally as excited for the opportunity.
“I, of course, agreed to do it before even asking anyone else in ATK,” Pilcher said.
This will be ATK’s first time performing live since before COVID-19. Even though the trio gets together every week to play music, Pilcher said they never made it back to playing in public after the lockdown.
“Even though my wife has played in bands forever, she just isn’t a big fan of playing out,” Pilcher said. “She loves to play, she just doesn’t always like to play in front of an audience.”
ATK is only one of several bands that Timm and Katie Pilcher have been a part of, including their previous cover band Betty Buzzkill. Pilcher says the ATK group has been playing together officially for about fifteen years.
He said many people mistake their band for a religious group, thinking “King” refers to Jesus or God. In reality, the way ATK got its name was completely accidental.
“Some of the first songs we ever played were “Possum Kingdom” by the Toadies…and All the Small Things,” he said. “The first set list that we made was handwritten before we even had a name…and when I went to print it, the only words that showed up on the copy machine were ‘All Things’ and ‘King.’”
From there, the name stuck, but Pilcher said they mostly just refer to themselves as ATK.
He said any confusion over a religious connection is quick to clear when people see the giant skull and crossbones in the ATK logo, which is printed largely on one of Pardock’s drum sets.
In preparation for Relays, the trio has been on a “heavy practice schedule,” learning two new songs to debut at the concert.
“I don’t wanna give away our entire setlist…but the new songs are ‘Should I Stay or Should I Go’…and ‘Sk8er Boy,’” Pilcher said.
As Tuttle and Kostusak were the ones to request those songs, they are especially excited to hear them performed.
“I’m just really looking forward to seeing everyone get together and have a great time at the concert,” Tuttle said. “I’m so happy I was able to be a part of it.”