Meet the Weekday Warriors


The close-knit win­ners of this year’s Musikarmageddon are a fun and quirky, high-energy, alt-hip-hop-funk band

The baby grand was silent with antic­i­pa­tion on a Saturday night in September as the crowd and com­peting bands waited to hear the fate of the Musikarmageddon finalists.

When local group Weekday Warriors were announced as vic­tors, a tremen­dous cheer erupted from the audience—and from Dan Lord, the band’s drummer, who stood tri­umphantly on a large speaker with his arms raised in celebration.

The four band members—Lord (known by friends as “Lord Dan”), singer and gui­tarist Russell Kutys (Russell “Que”), bassist Isaac Moore, and gui­tarist Deej Jalil—came onto the stage, bear-hugging each other and swap­ping repeated high fives—three per person, to be exact, which is their “secret” handshake.

“It was really grat­i­fying,” says Lord.

The band had come a long way from their first-ever show at JB McGinnes Pub & Grille two years ago, when all mem­bers had the flu, with tem­per­a­tures reaching 102 degrees, according to Lord. But by the time the high energy alternative-rock-hip-hop-funk group from Newark entered Wilmington’s battle-of-the-bands, they were brim­ming with confidence.

“We knew we had a pretty good chance of win­ning,” says Lord.

Musikarmageddon 2015 pre­sented per­haps the most diverse group of bands in the event’s nine-year his­tory. The com­pe­ti­tion offered audi­ences country, pop, heavy rock and hip-hop, among other genres. At the Sept. 26 finals, local bands Poor Yorick, The Jolly What, and It Is What It Is faced off with Weekday Warriors at the baby grand.

The Warriors joined the ranks of such noted past win­ners as Minshara, Glim Dropper and New Sweden. Their on-stage energy may have won them the victory—Lord says the band likes “to get people dancing” and includes rap­ping by Kutys—but the glue that holds the guys together is their friendship.

“The reason we have such strong con­nec­tions to each other? We’ve all known each other for a very long time,” says Lord.

He was the drummer for Jalil’s band, Echo Mission, in 2009, and he and Kutys have been playing music since 2011. And Lord remem­bers playing shows with Moore’s old band, My Worst Critic, years prior to that. Another friend­ship factor: most of the mem­bers have been room­mates at some time or other at a Newark house dubbed “The Bungalow,” which is cur­rently home to Kutys and Lord and dou­bles as prac­tice space and recording studio.

The band itself was born at open mics at Mojo Main, the dimly-lit Main Street bar that took the place of East End Café for just over three years before closing its doors last March. The loca­tion is now a trendy craft beer bar and restau­rant, Grain Craft Bar + Kitchen. The friends hosted trivia and open mic nights at Mojo, and the band held its first album release party at the bar.

“Our goal is to make enough money to buy Grain on Main back and restore it to its dive bar glory,” Lord jokes.

Kutys and Lord came up with the band name on a typ­ical Monday three years ago. The friends met up in the after­noon on Main Street for a few beers. They threw back one, then another, and then another, then launched an unof­fi­cial beer crawl down the street in broad daylight—an activity typ­i­cally reserved for Friday or Saturday evenings for weekend war­rior partiers.

The band started get­ting shows in Newark, Wilmington and Philadelphia while recording a number of EPs and albums, including September 2014’s Quantum Collapses, a 16-song CD recorded at The Bungalow and mixed by a friend, James Drake. Their newest EP, Three High Fives—a ref­er­ence to the greeting band mem­bers exchange when­ever they see each other—was released this past summer. It’s a col­lab­o­ra­tion between Weekday Warriors and others who “want to make good music with other good friends,” says Lord. “That’s what we did with this album.”

Newark musi­cians like Poor Yorick and Melissa Forsythe from the band This is Weird were among the artists who col­lab­o­rated with the Warriors, who in turn often par­tic­i­pate in their friends’ albums.

“We’ve all been friends since the Mojo Main days and we con­tinue to work together to help each other out,” says Lord.

The Warriors’ cur­rent project is Uppers, Downers and All Arounders, an album slated to be fin­ished by summer 2016. It’ll be a col­lec­tion of the band’s most recent songs, says Lord.

The friends are excited to take their quirk and humor to new places. They have three Saturday shows coming up in the area: on Nov. 7 at 1984; at School of Rock’s Fall Jam Nov. 21, and at Wilmo Rock Circus Nov. 28.

And for the record, despite the band’s care­free name, all members—mostly UD graduates—are employed pro­fes­sionals, and iron­i­cally enough, the majority hold day­time office jobs.

“We first started pro­moting the band as ‘the drunkest band on Main Street,’ but now I feel like we’re much more mature,” says Lord. “I don’t think we’re going to be the next Beatles, but at this rate if we can con­tin­u­ally grow our momentum over the next five years, we’ll be touring around the East Coast.”

For more infor­ma­tion, visit their Facebook page or web­sites at and week​day​war​riors​.band​camp​.com.