The Artery Foundation – Unique Merch Could Mean More Sales On Tour – Q&A INTERVIEW

Eric Rushing, who is the CEO of The Artery Foundation, has done an interview with us about the effects of touring merchandise sales. The interview can be read after the break!

Eric Rushing, who is the CEO of The Artery Foundation, has done an interview with us about the effects of touring merchandise sales. The interview can be read after the break!

Have you ever listened to bands like A Day To Remember, Asking Alexandria, or The Devil Wears Prada? Well, if so, you have probably heard of The Artery Foundation! Eric Rushing is the CEO of the management company behind a lot of your favorite hardcore and metal artists. We had a chance to catch up with him to talk about the effect of tour merchandise sales on the success of a touring band. He gives some awesome insight, so keep reading! You won’t regret it.

Digital Tour Bus: Can you please state your name, company, and position?
The Artery Foundation: Eric Rushing, The Artery Foundation, CEO

DTB: Can you give a brief description of what The Artery Foundation does and provides for the musicians you work with?
TAF: Artist management company that provides management skills for bands careers and future.

DTB: Artery Foundation bands are known to be road warriors. Is this a part of your strategy as a band manager?
TAF: Yes indeed it is.

DTB: How important is touring to your strategy as a manager and to your bands?
TAF: If you don’t tour you can’t develop. Radio bands can develop from being on the radio, but indie and underground bands have to hit the road in order to develop. That is why touring is very important.

DTB: About how many months of the year does an average Artery Foundation artist spend on the road touring?
TAF: 9-10 months out of every year.

DTB: Do you believe that bands that tour regularly have a chance a success or bands that do not tour?
TAF: Yes I do, as I stated below you must tour to develop in this business. No one knows who your band is if you don’t get out there and show them what you got live! Fans are short lived these days, so you must go out there and make lifelong fans out of them.

DTB: Your bands are also known for touring together. Is this a strategy that helps brand your bands and lets fans know what to expect out of the tour package?
TAF: Definitely, strength in numbers.

DTB: Not too long ago, Artery started doing branded Artery tours. Does this have to do with the growing Artery roster, the niche genre of music that a lot of your artists fulfill or other reasons?
TAF: Yes, we do branded tours so that people are familiar with our roster and if they like a band on our roster hopefully they’ll give some of the other bands a shot and listen to them as well.

DTB: Which Artery branded tour has experienced the most success? What bands were on the tour and why was it so successful?
TAF: The Artery Foundation Across the Nation…. Past bands that have done these tours that have gone on to blow up or developing very nicely: Asking Alexandria, Breathe Carolina, Dance Gavin Dance, Of Mice & Men, A Skylit Drive, Sleeping With Sirens, Woe is Me, Isetmyfriendsonfire, In Fear and Faith, I See Stars and many many more!

DTB: Forming a record label in the current state of the music industry seems like a crazy idea, but Artery started a record label in partnership with Razor & Tie. What prompted you to start this label?
TAF: We needed another great label to be able to put out new music that we find. You can only put so much music out on the current labels, so another option was needed for bands.

DTB: Do you believe that a signed band has a better chance to have success on the road over an unsigned band?
TAF: Definitely, you have some financial backing and marketing, which unsigned bands do not have.

DTB: Do you think fans expect all good bands to be signed and that they only take signed bands seriously?
TAF: No, not really everyone loves their hometown hero’s

DTB: When starting to manage an unsigned band, which is a bigger priority: getting the band signed or getting them on the road?
TAF: Signed is more important but not always first.

DTB: Your bands are also known to have some elaborate merchandise selections. Is this something that you help your bands set up, or is it something your bands decide on their own?
TAF: A little bit of both. It all depends on the band.

DTB: What are some of the standard merchandise items all of your bands carry on tour?
TAF: You’ve seen our merch malls we carry it all! Again, it depends on the bands and what they want to brand their name on.

DTB: What are some of the unusual merchandise items that have surprising sold well for your artists?
TAF: Hmmmm… Not really sure on that one. Most things do sell well, even novelty items.

DTB: What is the most outrageous merchandise item one of your bands has ever sold on tour?
TAF: Maybe given away, but not sold and that was condoms that Asking Alexandria gave away.

DTB: How important is merchandise sales to the success of a touring band?
TAF: That is how you survive on tour.

DTB: Would it be possible for an artist to tour and make a profit without merchandise to sell?
TAF: Doubt it.

DTB: Is it easier for your bands to sell merchandise on the road or online?
TAF: If you tour and sell on the road then people know who your band is so that you can sell online as well.

DTB: With the declining revenue from music sales, how important are touring and merchandising in the current state of the music industry?
TAF: It’s a must because you may never make money on selling record all depends on how successful your band is at retail

DTB: Do you think touring and merchandising will become more important as profits from music continue to fall?
TAF: It already is one of the main revenue streams for bands. Of course we all want to sell records. The more records you sell, the bigger your band gets. The bigger your band gets, the bigger tours you get. The bigger your merchandise sales are, the more successful your band is.

DTB: Do you have any other comments you would like to make or ideas/opinions to bring to light?
TAF: Get out there! You must tour nonstop!