It has been a slow and steady climb to Chicago rock group Fall Out Boy’s first North American headlining arena tour. The best new artist Grammy nominees’ major-label debut, “From Under the Cork Tree,” has sold 1.6 million units since its spring 2005 release, according to Nielsen SoundScan, and now the band is planning to headline its first arena tour.
“We’ve gradually played in front of 50 to 8,000 people due to demand,” bassist Pete Wentz tells Billboard. “We wanted to play arenas at this point to give everybody a chance to see us, but our next U.S. tour after this will probably be a small club tour.”
The arena tour kicks off March 15 at the Pepsi Arena in Albany, N.Y., and will hit at least 40 markets. Dates are being gradually announced on the band’s Web site.
The group just completed a fall headlining stint on the Nintendo Fusion tour, which grossed $1.8 million and was attended by more than 85,000, according to Billboard Boxscore. Fall Out Boy is touring Europe, in mostly theater-size venues, in January and February.
The Nintendo tour mainly stopped at theaters, but also included a few arenas. Wentz says those stops were a learning experience that the group will apply to its new tour.
“We took a poll on our Web site asking fans what about our shows is most important to them. The things that came up the most were floor space and ticket price,” Wentz says. “We wanted to make sure that these concerns were met on our arena tour.”
Accordingly, arenas were specifically chosen to allow for the most general-admission floor space, and ticket prices are being capped at $30.
Wentz notes that though he and his bandmates — vocalist/guitarist Patrick Stump, guitarist Joe Trohman and drummer Andy Hurley — are not “taking away a big chunk [of money] on this tour — we will get fans on the next tour. It’s important to not skip steps in your career and make sure you tour in the right way.”