Ten Things You Might Not Know About United Pursuit
I know, top 10 lists are so cliché of me. But it felt appropriate on multiple levels, the main reason being we’re in a season of clarifying who we are and what our vision is for our future. For the past 5 years, United Pursuit has grown slowly and organically by you guys spreading our music. Thanks by the way:) One of the things that comes with organic growth is ambiguity of all kinds. So for the sake of bringing a bit more clarity to the messy, here goes.
1. “So…Who/What Exactly Is United Pursuit?”
We often refer to United Pursuit as a mythical being up in the sky. For example, when a piece of audio gear breaks and we want to replace it, we’ll often look up into the air, and ask the great UP in the sky if we have permission to buy a new one.
Ok, seriously though, United Pursuit is simply a name we gave our music 5 years ago when we set up our Myspace profile. There were just a few of us then. Now there’s many more. We were and still are friends first, musicians and songwriters second. So in short, United Pursuit is the collective name of our worshipping community, loosely based out of Knoxville, TN, but with members scattered across the US.
2. “But almost every album your artist name changes! Please explain.”
Sorry about that. This has happened because, like I said above, we’ve grown organically and so has our name. I’ll walk you through the name evolution. Probably more info than you’ve ever wanted to know…
The beginning, 2008: United Pursuit Band, EP, Radiance
- There were a few of us back in the day, and it seemed at the time that we were a band. Makes sense right? We all wrote songs and put them together on two albums.
2009: Will Reagan & the United Pursuit Band, In the Night Season
- This time around, Will had a bunch of songs he wanted to record, and we all gathered around him in the studio to help make it happen. It didn’t feel right to call it a UPB album because it was all his songs. But Will didn’t want to call it solely a Will Reagan album, because we all played on it. Thus, Will Reagan & the UPB was born.
2010: Will Reagan & United Pursuit, Live at the Banks House, Endless Years
- Don’t be fooled. This one is a subtle shift. Noticed how we took off the word “band”? Well, turns out “band” didn’t quite do our story justice. To us, “band” represented a fixed number of members. Either your in or out. That’s not us. We felt that we couldn’t be limited to a fixed group, as our numbers kept growing. It felt more appropriate to describe UP as a collective. So we dropped it. (Alas, Facebook won’t let us change our name, so we’re sorta stuck in the mean time. Anyone know someone who works there?) [well, never mind. Thanks Margie C. for helping us change the name on Facebook!]
2011: Michael Ketterer, Andrea Marie, Brock Human, Love/War/Solar System, Here Begin, Color of Red
- Now things start getting interesting. As our numbers grew, so did the amount of songs being written and recorded. We decided to pool our resources and help each other record and release albums. UP acted as the indie record label here, while the UP community helped make these albums happen. Stylistically, the music felt unique and different enough from our previous material, so we didn’t want to stamp UP on the end of it and potentially confuse people with “hey, your about to listen to a vertical worship cd” when it was more like“dance/pop tracks you’d like to work out to (Michael Ketterer)”, or “beautiful love songs you’d like to walk down the isle to (Andrea Marie).” The plot thickens indeed.
United Pursuit / Iris Ministries , Found
- We decided to partner with Iris Ministries, an orphanage/church planting movement in Mozambique, to help raise some money for them. 100% of this album proceeds go to them. And you get a nice devotional worship album in the process. You can thank Brock. He masterminded this gem.
2014: Michael Ketterer & United Pursuit, The Wild Inside
- Ah, the moment I’ve been waiting for. We’ve always planned on releasing multiple worship albums from different members of our community. The first three happened to be with Will. This time around, its with Michael Ketterer. You might remember him from his previous dance/pop project. This one is nothing like it. This is scream your guts out “anthemic” worship”, if that’s a real thing. We’re excited about this one. Coming Feb. 25th.
Click here to sample the album.
3. “Are You Signed On a major Label?”
No. We formed our own in-house record label, which is a fancy way of saying we write, produce, record, create art, websites, videos, and tour with the help of our amazing and talented community.
4. “How old are you guys?”
As of 2014, we range roughly from 23 to 36. Not naming names here:)
5. “ What is the Banks House? Who is the Mr. and Mrs. Banks?”
This might be sad for you to hear, but there is no Mr. or Mrs. Banks. The Banks house simply resides on Banks Ave. The name stuck way before there was an album recorded there.
6. “What “church” are you part of?”
Easy cliché answer = we are the Church.
More complicated answer = we are part of a small house church community that, as we say it, “does life together” throughout the week. (Read Bonheoffer’s Life Together. Good read.) We love the Church and live to serve Christ’s bride.
7. “You guys don’t tour too often, do you?”
Compared to a normal band, we don’t travel much. Usually 5 to 7 days a month, with a few longer international trips per year. We feel called to keep our roots in our home town of Knoxville, TN. We don’t want to live on the road, but live at home, and share what God’s doing in our home when we’re on the road.
8. “Do We Like Tasha Cobb’s Version of Break Every Chain?”
YES! It’s the cat’s meow. It’s the bee’s knees. Let’s face it, Break Every Chain was destined to become a gospel song.
9. “Are you connected with Jesus Culture? “
Not officially, but we love what they do, and are friends with some of their group. Chris, Kim, and crew, we love u guys!
10. “So what’s the Banks House 2.0?”
Woops. Didn’t know that name would catch on. Its actually called the Fifth Ave House. Banks House 2.0 was the name of our crowdfunding campaign (thanks for that. We owe you big time). “So What is the Fifth Ave House?”Glad you asked. Last year, we felt the Lord calling us to plant deeper roots in our city (Knoxville). We’ve been dreaming for years for a common space for the church of Knoxville to gather in unity and simply worship Jesus together. And because Knoxville is really central to lots of people on the East Coast, we thought it would be cool to have a place where you could easily join us too. We’d run out of room in our homes to host any more people, so the Fifth Ave House is our bigger living room so to speak. At 119 W. Fifth Ave, you will find us there every Tuesday night. And coming real soon, no matter where you live in the world, you’ll be able to join us via live streaming every Tuesday night. Thank you internet. We’re pretty excited about it. Stay tuned.
That’s a wrap ya’ll.
If I missed some burning question, write a comment on this blog and we’ll do our best to respond, or at least follow up with another blog post. Peace! – nate