Rock Workshop: Where Are They Now? Take the King

Jun 12, 2015

Rock Workshop: Where Are They Now? Take the King

We asked former Rock Workshop band Take the King to tell us about their band--namely a brief history, what they have in store, and what role the Foundry has played for them. Here's what they had to say.


Take The King began their “Bandship” (started their band) through the Madison Music Foundry’s Rock Workshop Program. In addition to taking various lessons from the Foundry’s talented staff of musicians, each band member signed up to participate in Rock Workshop. Starting with Jens and Charles (guitarists, vocals and songwriting), followed by Galen (drums) and finally adding Van (bass), Take the King was formed. In fact their name was chosen during their first recording session at the Blast House Studio together during Rock Workshop. As they listened to their tracks come together with the audio mixing, one of the band members carefully thought out the next move on his electronic chess game. Another band member turned to him and said “Take the King!” The rest is history.

During their many Rock Workshop sessions, Take the King discovered their chemistry in writing music together. This creativity in songwriting has given them a unique niche as a high school band, as any given set list consists of mostly originals when they gig! Past gigs for Take the King include the Willy Street Fair, a Madison Mallards game, Bratfest and many other community events. Upcoming gigs include Summerfest, Atwood Fest and many more! Being from four different high schools has never been an issue for the Take the King band members, in fact their diversity has allowed them to compete in both Memorial High School and Mt Horeb High School’s Battle of the Bands competitions, taking home first place at both events!

In addition to summer gigs, Take the King has been working on their first full-length album at Blast House Studios with engineer Landon Arkens. They will be planning a release party for late summer/early fall.

Take the King is a really great group of well-rounded kids, as they are all honors students and Varsity athletes. One of the parents recently said that while driving the guys to a gig, their topic of conversation was about honors courses, GPA’s and National Honors Society.

It is clear that the talented Take the King band is committed for the long haul, thanks to the Madison Music Foundry’s Rock Workshop Program. Please show your support for young local talent by attending their gigs! Cheering as loud as you can will come naturally after you hear their amazing sound!

Galen Austin - Drums
Charles Donovan - Guitar, Vocals
Jens Shager - Guitar, Vocals
Van Tetzner - Bass

Tags: personal stories (6) promotion (3)