The Quarter Mile Band showcased its emerging talent during a performance at the bandshell Tuesday.
Joking with one another and taking turns at center stage, the musicians played a medley of country rock with a little alternative rock mixed in for the younger crowd.
“We had a lot of fun and I could tell we’ve gotten better than when we played last year,” guitarist Mike Klein said.
Klein is one of three musicians, who organized the band about three years ago. As classmates at Dickinson’s Trinity High School, they spent their leisure time playing video guitar games. It occurred to them, why not start a garage band?
The name was easy, as guitarist Ryan Krebs enjoys quarter-mile drag racing. He won first place at Jamestown last week in his class division with a 1967 GTO.
“I’ve always played guitar a little bit, but not serious,” Krebs said. “All three of us were tired of playing video games and wondered, could we do this for real?”
They talked their buddy, Nathan Gunwall into purchasing a used set of drums — an instrument he had never played before.’
Gunwall listened to other artists and started practicing — soon it became fun, he said.
Gunwall and Krebs work at the Coteau coal mines near Beulah, so they face the challenge of finding rehearsal times.
“They come over to my basement — so that’s how we got started,” Krebs said.
Klein, who works at Able Inc., said the band plays a variety of music, everything from Johnny Cash to Blink-182. They have a roster of three hours of music and are polishing up a fourth hour.
Their fortune as an emerging band was enhanced when Cal Ullendorf took an interest in them. Ullendorf, who also works for ABLE, was invited to play with the band during a rehearsal.
Ullendorf has his own band — Dakota Breeze — that plays professionally around the region.
Ullendorf liked the sound of what he heard.
“They are a lot of fun to be around and that’s what drew me into helping them,” Ullendorf said. “These guys are so full of energy and so full of fun, we can practice five hours and it seems like 10 minutes.”
Ullendorf was acquainted Kristi Pechtl, and soon, she joined the group as vocalist and on keyboards.
She heard the band play at Dickinson’s Got Talent, a program that she helped organized as Arts on the Prairie director. The band made it to the finale that year, even though it didn’t win.
Her interest in band is linked to the friendships she’s fostered.
“We just have fun or we wouldn’t do it,” she said.
She described Ullendorf as having his own style.
“That’s why I love his solos so much — he’s an absolutely a free spirit when he’s playing,” Pechtl said.
The public recognizes Klein’s charisma while on stage, she said.
“He’s so much fun to be with — a lot of people say they have fun because we’re having fun,” she added.
Because of the connections to Able, the band plays for their social gatherings. The next is a dance, sponsored by the Arc of Dickinson on Wednesday at the Dickinson Eagles Club.Talk about it