By THOM JENNINGS
FOR THE DAILY NEWS
DARIEN CENTER — On Saturday, the Goo Goo Dolls stop at the venue closest to their hometown as part of their Long Way Home Tour 2017.
The Buffalo-bred band formed in these parts back in 1986 but did not reach the status of commercial superstars until almost a decade later with the album “A Boy Named Goo” and then cemented their status in 1998 with the ubiquitous single “Iris.”
Formed as a trio, the original band consisted of John Rzeznik, Robby Takac and George Tutuska, who left the band in a royalty dispute in 1994. Drummer Mike Malinin was the drummer from 1994-2013; he was the only official member of the band not from Buffalo. Manlinin sued the band shortly after announcing his departure on Twitter. A judge dismissed the case in 2015.
Since Manlinin’s departure The Goo Goo Dolls only official members are Rzeznik and Takac. The lack of an official drummer has never slowed down the group. The group tours with three supporting musicians, Brad Fernquist on guitar, multi-instrumentalist Korel Tunador and drummer Craig Macintyre.
The 2017 tour’s set consists of over 20 songs from their 30-plus years as a band and covers most of the bands albums with the exception of the very early days when the band was still touring the country in a van. The current set even has a cut from “Superstar Car Wash,” an album that features a picture of a former Buffalo business of the same name that was located on William Street.
The band has released two albums and an EP since 2013. Their latest EP, “You Should Be Happy,” includes five songs and was released in May.
Even though Rzeznik no longer resides in Buffalo, he has been a champion of the city and returns to the area often. In recent years, Rzeznik and Takac filmed a promotional video in Buffalo and the duo performed at a memorial service for the Buffalo music legend Lance Diamond.
Takac still lives in Buffalo and is the head of the non-profit organization Music is Art. It’s not unusual to see Takac around Buffalo when the band is not touring, and he is one of the most approachable rock stars you will ever meet.
In addition to hailing from Buffalo, the Goo Goo Dolls have accomplished what many of their musical peers were unable to, they have remained a solid concert draw and continue to release and perform new music rather than solely rely on their back catalogue.
Opening the show will be Phillip Phillips, the 26-year-old former American Idol finalist best known for the song “Home.” His second album came out in 2014 and fans have been eagerly awaiting for his third one.