Signing Story: Alive Like Me--Why They Signed to Rise Records

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The members of Alive Like Me had been playing together in different forms since the eighth grade. And whenever they wanted to record a project, they took it to their friend, Ryan Furlott, at Rain City Audio. That connection proved fortunate—as a member of Defeat the Low, Furlott played alongside Rise Records’ founder, Craig Ericson.

Furlott passed Alive’s demo on to multiple contacts. One label called and another made a concrete offer. “It was really hard not to take,” reports their singer, Jairus Kersey. But then there was Rise, which held back but made their interest clear. The prospect of signing with Rise, a label boasting their favorite band, the Devil Wears Prada, was too tempting, so they waited.

“We were all so
excited that we just 
put pen to paper.”

Having sent Rise a second song, they were summoned to Ericson’s basement. Despite their van dying, a broken foot and Kersey nursing a cold, everything went smoothly. After twice running down their five-song repertoire, Rise offered dinner and a contract.

Youthful enthusiasm made the decision unanimous. “We were all so excited that we just put pen to paper,” blurts Kersey. Their trust in Furlott engendered faith in deal, but they’ve since reviewed the details. “It was exactly what we wanted.”

Signing with Rise has dramatically altered their career trajectory. For starters, they never would have been able to record their full-length album, Only Forever, due out Oct. 7. Nor would they have hired their manager, played the Warped Tour alongside Slaves or been slated to tour Japan with Issues this month. “Everything comes back to getting signed, making new connections, making new friends,” coos the singer. “That’s what it’s all about.”

– Andy Kaufmann