Fall II Rise

A story of the band Fall II Rise based on an interview with band members Betty Rise / Tyler Williams
by Laura Sorensen
November 2015

Fall II Rise

Fall II Rise

Fall II Rise is not new to the rock scene. They have however changed and evolved since their inception in 2009 in Puerto Rico.  Combining members from another band and picking up their bass guitarist Tyler from Oklahoma, Betty (Guerrero) Rise believes they are now at full potential. She says that the new EP will be more representative of who they are now as a band, varying significantly from the previous self-titled CD “Fall II Rise” released in 2012.

Having achieved national popularity in their native territory of Puerto Rico, Fall II Rise went on to tour in the United States. The response in the Midwest was so positive that they decided to relocate to Madison, WI where they have been since April 2014. 

I asked Betty about the origin of the band name. She indicated that at the time they named the band, there was no real story behind it. Rather, the band has grown into the name as they have created their own story of struggling and getting back up again.  “The story kind of developed itself as the band grew, the way the band has developed itself and all of the things that we’ve gone through and all of the struggles. You have to fall a lot of times in order to rise and actually accomplish what you really want,” Betty said. I was also curious about the singer’s stage name “Betty Rise.”  It was pretty evident that the last name was tied to the band name.  It also makes things much simpler, as her real name has a lot of rolling “R’s” and she felt that she kept over explaining it. Thus the name Betty Rise was born and seems fitting for her role as lead singer.

We discussed the new EP and the songs that would be on it. This is the first release from the band with the entire new lineup. Everything about it will be different from the previous CD, the recording quality is better, the themes of the songs are more accurate according to what’s going on in current times. Tyler says “Betty really put a lot of emotion into these songs. The way she wrote everything lyrically and the music works really well.” He said that writing the songs really didn’t take that long, a few months. The recording of the music and producing the actual EP is what takes the longest.  As the song writer for the band, Betty says she is not one to write about sappy subjects. Her thought when she decided to become a musician was “How can I use this to convey a message of some sort?” Music has allowed her to address current topics and issues. Betty says ““We Are” is very much about uprising, about how people have a lot more power than they think they do, and standing up for what you believe in. The song starts out talking about how Fall II Rise came from a small place, people had no clue what we were doing and we moved into this big place. There’s so many musicians and so many good bands that you are trying hard to set yourself apart from. As the song continues, it turns into how we as a band were able to do this, to speak up about what we believe in. You can do it too.  Just because you don’t have a mic in front of you or you aren’t in a political standing doesn’t mean you don’t have the same kind of power.”

I asked Betty and Tyler if they have a timeline for releasing even more new songs.  They said they are always working and writing music. They estimated that by next summer they would probably have new music to release. As a band they are really committed to writing their own music and not doing cover songs.

The musicians talked a little about the financial burden of being in a band. Betty said that it helps that they all have regular day jobs, organizing their finances as much as possible and setting a budget. They try to separate things so they aren’t doing a photo shoot, video release and CD release all at the same time. She says it is a struggle but they believe in it so much that they make it work. At the end of the day they go back to rehearsal and it makes everything worthwhile. As far as merch they do have a couple of shirt designs, stickers and posters. They focus on their music and smart items to keep everything as cost effective as possible and bundle items together to make the pricing a little more affordable for their fans. The two band members expressed how important it is to them to make contact with their audience. They believe in meeting their fans, taking pictures, signing CD’s, answering questions. However, Betty says she is really opposed to people paying for band meet and greet packages.  “If you’re big enough to have a meet and greet you are already charging people for a ticket to that show.  Not everyone has the extra money to pay for a separate meet and greet. “

As far as long term goals, “It would be rather crass to say we don’t have a long term plan,” Tyler stated. “We definitely do, but we’re also realistic. I’m not going to say we’re going to be the most famous band ever, but I’m also not going to say that we aren’t going to try.” 

Betty’s last words of advice, “If you think a band is good, support them as much as you can, we all work do very hard at what we do. We are fans of other bands as well. You may think that a band is so big that they don’t need you to share their video because they already have a lot of people watching it. The reason we do this is because the fans come first, they are number one. Come to the shows, don’t be shy. Let us know you’re there.”

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