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Words and photos by Richard Clark

Reading Band Valeras supported Goo Goo Dolls in fantastic fashion with their mix of EMO, R’N’B and flashes of Latino influences. Lead singer Rose Yagmur had an incredible stage presence that was great to watch. Valeras set the mood for the night and the crowd were warmed up ready for the main show. A fan from Newcastle said to me after Varelas set that “The lead singer is mesmerising.” The Newcastle fans said that they were pleased to have seen Valeras as they were a good band musically as well as performers.

Goo Goo Dolls need little introduction as they’ve been going strong for 3 decades together as a band with over 12 million albums sold and 4 times GRAMMY Nominated. Miracle Pill is their 12th studio album that was released in 2019 with single ‘Miracle Pill,’ ‘Indestructable’ and ‘Fearless’ were included in tonight’s show.

The stage filled with smoke creating an atmosphere as the audience eagerly awaited Goo Goo Dolls to take to the stage to kick off the night’s proceedings. Singer John Rzeznik entered the stage first, grabbing the microphone, more smoke was released and the lights were low and John started to sing. The stage filled with more smoke as the rest of the band joined John on stage and the show was in full swing from the very start. John thanked the sold out crowd for coming to see them and he said how much he loved performing in the UK and to the Leeds fans. The crowd were in high spirits as they sang and danced along in the cramped space available.

Audience members shouted that they loved Goo Goo Dolls and Rzeznik responded saying he loved them too and more people shouted back. Rzeznik smiled and continued to play their next track. Throughout the show Rzeznik and Robby Tacac covered the whole stage walking whilst playing their guitars to the edges of the stage to engage with the crowd. Just a small gesture from Rzeznik and Tacac got the crowd cheering and clapping to the beat.

The first song of the evening was called ‘Indestructable in which Rzeznik reveals his regrets over a past lover, despite the sadness coming through in the lyrics it is layered with cheery and upbeat sounds from each of the guitarists. Rzeznik joked when he said he had an ex-girlfriend from the UK but they had to end as she was a better guitarist.

The second song of the evening is called ‘Home’ from their 9th studio album ‘Something for the Rest of Us’ Rzeznik talks about how he misses being home with important people he cares about and how he desperately wants to be where he feels happy and complete.

Third song ‘Slide’ was played which is a deep song about a Catholic girl who has become pregnant and the discussion between her and her boyfriend whether they should have an abortion or get married.

When the song ‘Big Machine’ was played mid way through the show, 100’s of black balloons released into the audience. The audience played a giant game of keepy uppy batting them around the O2. Pops were heard as the audience wanted to get back to watching the band on stage. At the end of the show a few balloons remained being passed around the audience.

Goo Goo Dolls covered their classic hits this made the crowd very vocal as they sang at the top of their lungs, arms raised in the air. The audience knew from the first few strums of the mandolin that ‘Iris’ was going to be played and they seemed excited to hear it. Rzeznik pointed the mic to crowd and they immediately started to sing the chorus. The band jammed showcasing their musical talents at their best. The music slowed in pace and the crowd were waiting for the music to drop, so they could continue dancing and singing to the remainder of ‘Iris.’ The show was nearing the end and the intensity didn’t stop as the band continued to play their two remaining well-known hits ‘Broadway’ and ‘Autumn Leaves.’ Each of the musicians fully showcased their skills as they heavily played their instruments Tacac taking the spotlight while playing the bass full throttle. Brad Fernquist played many different guitars and Mandolin demonstrating his talents throughout the show. Iris was unmistakable when Ferquis started to play. Craig Macintyre was incredible on the drums setting the pace throughout the night and he enjoyed his drum solo at the end of the show. Jim McGovern on key’s produced light and jovial tones to the contrast of guitars and drums. Rzeznik thanked their fans for coming to the show and played ‘Autumn Leaves’ before leaving the stage to bring their epic show to an end.

The Goo Goo Dolls, supported by Valeras, were at the O2 Academy in Leeds on February 22nd as part of their UK tour.

Check out these great photos from Scott Smith!


Usually it is a line, let’s be honest. But Rose Yagmur – a woman you sense means every word at the best of times – has a point when she says: “This is amazing, for a little band like us….. Thing is, the Reading four piece have taken it all in their stride. Not overawed in the slightest at seeing a packed venue, instead they tear into their half hour as if lives depend it – and to be fair, it could alter their future. Their scuzzy, punky, indie 90s rock takes in all kinds of things, not least “Playing With A Gun” with its impressive chorus, elsewhere, “Oh Well” and “Louder” sort of recall The Wannadies and the likes, but in a set that seems important for all kinds of reasons, then nothing seems more vital than the last one. “Hear Me Out” is about “being gay and proud – like me” says Yagmur, who ditches her bass for the duration, instead smashing a tambourine and jumping off stage to meet the front rows. Valeras have a youthful energy and an air of unpredictability that suggests this is far from the end of the road for them, and they may well blossom into something with proper individuality.

On a night for honesty, you can’t fault John Rzeznik’s. The man who, along with Robby Takac has helmed the Goo Goo Dolls for over 30 years, knows what he is meant to say: “Hey Birmingham!” He yells, after the classic “Slide”, third song in if you please. “We’re so glad to be here! It’s warm in here ‘cos we’re altogether…..”

That’s what bands do, right? Except it’s freezing outside and sleeting. Rzeznik stops, smiles and says what he really thinks: “Man, I am not gonna bullshit you people. I am fucking freezing!”

In that spirit, I’ll tell the truth too.

Until “Miracle Pill” the bands 11th and latest record, arrived in the MV inbox last year – and the title track is the one they play after the temperature revelation – it’d been at least 15 years since I had listened to GGD.

I’d been a massive fan in the late 90s. “Dizzy Up The Girl” (just the 4.2 million records sold in the US) in general and the single “Slide” in particular, along with The Gin Blossoms and Counting Crows had defined the greatest unrequited love affair in the history of the world that went on throughout the period in my head, then I’d gone back and listened to the metal records they’d started with.

Fast forward 22 years, and I am sitting here tonight singing the words to these songs,  stuff like “Black Balloon” and “January Friend” like they’ve been on my iPod every day since. That, right there, is the mark of brilliant music. They stick with you.

And a thought strikes. That story of the girl who wouldn’t remember me and who I haven’t seen in two decades. How many people here have something similar? Some connection with GGD like that?

Who knows, probably loads. What I do know is that this version of Goo Goo Dolls is in astonishingly good form tonight.

Starting with a new one “Indestructible” is a good move, given that it immediately gives notice that this is not a nostalgia trip. Rightly so, because they have plenty to offer and plenty to say.

They’ve always been hard to read. Their early records were proper heavy affairs, for all they became later, and when they play “Fallin Down” – on which keyboard man Jim McGorman excels –  or when Takac sings “Another Second Time Around” you remember the rawness of the material, certainly the contrast with “Fearless” – the anthemic affair from “…Pill” is stark.

But then, what we are witnessing on this stage tonight is the natural evolution of an underrated band. The breadth of their stuff is shown in this 95 minutes. “Stay With You” is superb,  and the screeching solo of “Autumn Leaves” from the new one makes for a great crescendo ready for the encore.

Except there isn’t an encore. And how can you not love the fact that this, a massive rock band by any definition, doesn’t need its ego stroking by going off and on again to get applause?

They do, of course, have “Iris” in their back pocket. Number one all around the world and millions and millions sold. It’s a mega hit, and it sounds huge, but you know what? “Broadway” is better. And it is alive tonight, it still is. The passion. The desire for the music, the pride in the performance.

How do we know this? Well, this is just a guess, but Rzeznik seems angry when the Harmonica part of the song doesn’t work. He throws the instrument, and if he could have launched his guitar at somebody at the end, then I am going to guess he’d have done that too. Settling instead for throwing it down.

I have no idea why he was upset, because let’s be clear, Goo Goo Dolls were brilliant tonight. In a way though, if he was upset that proves why. Because at a stage of their career when they could realistically, just find some anniversary and an excuse to play an album all the way through, they’d much rather keep pushing forward.

The band had a day off to explore the city before playing a packed out gig

By Matt Jarram Senior Digital Reporter and Crime Correspondent

Rock heavyweights the Goo Goo Dolls would probably never play a venue as small as Rock City back home in the good ol' US of A.

But then again, much of Britain hasn't really paid that much attention to the trio - as a conversation at Pizza Express before the gig revealed.

"Never heard of them," the twentysomething waitress said while she prepared our pizzas, before I stopped a fortysomething boss. "Is it a cartoon?" he replied.

Well, good job Nottingham has loyal Goo Goo fans, as the main room was packed to the rafters, with a good majority looking like they ran through the merchandise stall on their way upstairs.

For me, the Goo Goo Dolls aren't half as slushy as some people think they are.

Yes, they created the tear-jerking, heart-pulling Iris from the painfully average City of Angels movie, which has now become an instant favourite at weddings and funerals.

But there is more to them that. In fact, their music is very grunge / garage rock .

Not quite Pearl Jam or Counting Crows but somewhere in between. A good place. A respectable place. A place you are happy to visit once or twice in a lifetime.

And they were ready to show us why the £30-odd ticket price was a steal - a much more respectable price compared to what they charge back in New York City.

They started with the title track from their new album - Indestructible.

It's a bouncy number before charging into Home and Slide from everyone's fave Dizzy Up the Girl.

Guitarist/vocalist Johnny Rzeznik, said he has spent a bit of time in Nottingham before the gig and came familiar with the word 'knobhead.'

Someone called him it. Nice. Welcome to the city, John.

Bassist Robby Takac seemed to have a better time. "We had a day off and there was lots of bows and arrows and lots of fun."

Johnny danced in his Adidas tracksuit top, giving the left, right and middle of the crowd equal attention, so everyone could snap a decent picture.

It's a brilliant gig - stylish, well-polished, well-practiced rock.

And for Black Balloon they did release black balloons into the crowd.

Iris is saved for the encore but finisher Broadway is the show's best number.

This was a mighty 22-song set showcasing the band's extensive career since 1987.

Goo Goo Dolls - Nottingham salutes you!

Setlist at Rock City on February 24

Miracle Pill
Rebel Beat
Black Balloon
Big Machine
Another Second Time Around
January Friend
Fallin' Down
So Alive
Life's a Message
Bringing on the Light
Better Days
Stay With You
Autumn Leaves

The Alice Ski House, presented by Wells Fargo

Join us in Breckenridge, March 11 with John Rzeznik

After you register, listen to Alice 105.9 at 7:30AM and 5:30 PM Tuesday March 3 - Monday, March 9th for your name to be announced as a winner.

Winners Receive:

1 night hotel stay for two guests in Breckenridge

Access to the private party and performance featuring John Rzeznik at The Alice Ski House in Breckenridge

Shuttle Service to the Alice Ski House from the hotel

Plus, join Alice 105.9 at select Sprint Stores on February 29, 2020 for another chance to win!

Goo Goo Dolls News & Info / New Interview on the 2/24/20 AG Podcast!
« on: February 24, 2020, 07:25 PM »
On this week’s AG Podcast, Gen and Annie speak with Goo Goo Dolls fan Julie B.  Julie shares her story about how the band’s music helped with her recovery from cancer, and explains just how her awesome tattoo came to be! Plus, the opening date for the Summer Tour Meet and Greet Lotteries is announced!

Goo Goo Dolls News & Info / Videos from Glasgow, UK 2/19/20
« on: February 20, 2020, 05:14 PM »
Thanks to all the fans for sharing these great videos from the Glasgow show on Wednesday!

Dean Adams

"Fallin Down"



Helen Hall


"So Alive"

"Black Balloon"

"Autumn Leaves"



"Stay With You"


"Tattered Edge"

"Bringing on the Light"

"January Friend"

"Miracle Pill"


"Here is Gone"

Dina Dawl


Goo Goo Dolls to perform on Variety Club Kids Telethon

Check out this article from The Buffalo News about the Goo Goo Dolls appearance on the Variety Club Kids telethon.

Goo Goo Dolls News & Info / UK Music Reviews: Interview John Rzeznik
« on: February 14, 2020, 10:10 PM »
By: Kevin Cooper

John Rzeznick is an American musician, singer, songwriter and producer.

Forming the rock band, the Goo Goo Dolls in 1986 with co-founder Robby Takac, he continues to be the main songwriter, guitarist and front man of the band.

In 1998 he was asked to write a soundtrack for the film, City Of Angels, and the end product was the song Iris, which stayed on the top of the Billboard Hot 100 Airplay charts for a record breaking eighteen weeks and it also spent four weeks at number one on the Billboard’s Pop Songs chart. Later that year the song was nominated for three Grammys.

The Goo Goo Dolls have released twelve studio albums, but it was their sixth album, Dizzy Up The Girl which went on to amass multi platinum sales and brought them international acclaim. The album featured hit tracks Iris and Slide for which Rzeznick received the 2000 ASCAP Song of the Year Award.

In 2008 he was inducted into The Songwriters Hall of Fame and was also awarded the Hal David Starlight Award. In 2015 the Goo Goo Dolls also contributed to the soundtrack of the broadway musical Finding Netherland.

Rzeznick is also an ambassador for VHI’s Save The Music Foundation.

Whilst busy rehearsing for their forthcoming tour of the UK, John Rzeznick took some time out to have a chat with Kevin Cooper and this is what he had to say.

Hi John, how are you today?

I’m good thank you Kevin, how are you?

I have to say that I am very well thanks and before we move on let me just thank you for taking the time to speak to me today.

Not at all, thank you for being interested enough in what we are doing to give up your time for this interview.

And I must ask you, just how is life treating you at this moment in time?

(Laughter) better than most, but not as good as some.

We must speak about your forthcoming tour of the UK but if I may, I would like to talk about your recent album Miracle Pill which you released 13th September 2019.

Sure, that’s fine, go for it.

Well I must tell you from the outset that I love it. I think that it is a great piece of work.

Thank you very much, I really do appreciate that.

Are you and Robby (Takac) both happy with the final product?

Yes, we are, we really are. In fact, I must tell you that I personally had a lot of fun making the album. As you most probably know, I like to go out and do a few little field trips and making this album was the perfect excuse for me to travel around the States and record at different studios. It was also the ideal opportunity for me to work with different people, and I have to say that I really do enjoy that. For me, the whole episode is a learning experience. It is truly amazing what you can learn from other people. My writing was fine, but I just wanted to be able to expand it and then work with different producers.

We even managed to talk Alan Moulder into mixing a track for the album. He mixed a track for us which will soon be released as the next single from the album. Alan, as you know, is Britain’s premier alternative rock producer, mixer and engineer who has been working prolifically in the UK and USA since the 1980’s. When I heard what Alan had done with the track it was like ‘wow’ I was totally blown away. And the best part was that somebody else was paying for it all (laughter).

Your fans here in the UK are already saying that Miracle Pill is your best work to date. Would you agree with that?

I’m happy that it is good, and I am happy that people are receiving it well. However, I always find it hard for me to say what my best work is. I am enjoying it more now because it is something new (laughter). The shine of it hasn’t worn off yet (laughter).

If Miracle Pill made it, where would it sit in a Goo Goo Dolls top five albums?

I would most definitely have to say either two or three.

At this moment in time, I have three go to tracks. They are Lost, Fearless and Indestructible. I personally think that those three tracks are brilliant.

Thank you, they really are fun songs for us to play live. Well thinking about it, Lost isn’t that much fun but Indestructible and Fearless are both positive and pretty strong songs (laughter).

Putting you on the spot, do you have a favourite track on the album?

Don’t worry it’s not putting me on the spot at all. My favourite track on the album is a track which comes right at the end of the album called Autumn Leaves. For some reason, I don’t know why, that song just resonates with me a lot.

Are you always writing?

Over the past few years, yes, I am, because that just seems to be how the record business is nowadays. Back in the day you would write a set of songs, take a break, tour for a year or two, and then maybe take a little time off before writing some more songs. But now, you have simply got to keep going and let me tell you, it can be quite a grind sometimes. Having said that, I am enjoying the collaborations that I am doing with people now; it makes the process go a little bit quicker. Whenever I collaborate with someone, and it works really well it is like ‘wow, I never really thought to do that’ (laughter). So, for me, constantly writing is a good thing. I think that it also helps to keep the sound of the band fresh.

I have been told that you are coming over here to the UK to do some writing. Is that correct?

(Laughter) just who the hell has told you that? Yes, that’s right, I am coming over to the UK to write for the very first time with some British writers and I am excited about that. There is such a different take on music over there in the UK, and the music that I am listening to now that I love is Sam Fender, I absolutely love what it is that he is doing. I just think that there is a different aesthetic about music over there than there is here in America. I think that if I was able to infuse some of that into my music, then it would make it pretty cool. I consider myself to be a student of song writing.

They always say that you are never too old to learn, don’t they?

Yes, they do, but sometimes I feel too old the learn (laughter). I may not be but sometimes I feel like it (laughter).

When will you start writing for the next album?

I will be doing a few writing sessions before we leave for the forthcoming tour this summer. Plus, I already have a couple of songs that I just want to finish right now, so that is what I am doing now, until we come over to the UK.

You mention the UK; you will be back here 19th February for the tour. Do you enjoy the time that you get to spend here?

Yes, I do, I love it over there in the UK; the crowds are great. I love playing at the O2 Academies, and I have to say that they are just great rock halls. We don’t have a lot of those here in the States. It really is a great vibe. People have a different perspective on music over there than they do here.

Do the UK audiences look after you?

Yes, they do and that feels great. I know that this is going to happen again but, it really is a great feeling when you come out onto the stage, you are playing your very first song, and everyone starts singing along with you. That to me is just like ‘wow, you can hear them’ and its like ‘damn, I can hear the audience’ (laughter). That really is a cool experience; there is so much enthusiasm and they love their music so much.

You will be playing here in Nottingham on Monday 24th February. Will that be the first time that you have played here in the city?

You could be right; I don’t even know if we have played in Nottingham before (laughter). Let’s just say that I am just looking forward to being there. London has got a great vibe; I love being able to play there. I also love going up to Glasgow and seeing everything. Everything over there in the UK is so close in comparison to the States. I was recently listening to a Podcast on Spotify and it was basically an oral history of The Clash. The boys were saying just how insanely huge America was. They couldn’t believe that it took so long to get everywhere (laughter). Then, whenever I come over to tour the UK, I sit down on the tour bus, start reading a book, and after only a couple of chapters I’m like ‘what, were there’ (laughter).

Let’s just say that the UK is small but quaint.

Yes, let’s do that. I love it; I enjoy talking to the people and getting their take on just what is going on in my country (laughter). Take it from me that can be interesting. I can’t wait to hear what they have to say about the whole (Donald) Trump thing; it’s going to be so interesting hearing people talk. I don’t drink but there will be nights when I will go out to a pub, sit and try to talk to some folk; I love it (laughter). Having said that though, I won’t be doing much of that in Manchester because I think that they are likely to hold me personally responsible for Trump, and drag me out into the street and beat me (laughter).

Before you stopped drinking, did you manage to acquire a taste for our warm beer?

Yes, I did, far too much of a taste for it in fact. I haven’t had a drink in five years now and I have to say that I feel better but, I must be honest and say that things simply aren’t as interesting as they used to be (laughter). How can you go to Manchester and not get drunk; it is really difficult (laughter)? Not drinking is alright as I still get to observe people. Since I quit drinking, I love hanging out, watching people drink.

It’s okay providing that they are happy drunks and not violent drunks.

That’s right, but if things get uncomfortable, I simply step away. I tend to slip away to the bathroom and never come back (laughter).

Going back to the new album and the forthcoming tour; how many of the new songs will make it onto the set list?

Well we are most definitely going to play Fearless, Indestructible and Autumn Leaves, although we won’t be playing Lost, or maybe we will; we will have to see how it goes once we have rehearsed it.

With your back catalogue increasing to twelve albums now, is it difficult for you to put a set list together for the tour?

Yes, it is a little bit because there are songs that we have really got to play. In my own opinion all about being in a band is that I am an entertainer and so by the nature of the beast, I have to entertain. There are people who spend an awful lot of money in order to come and see a show, and that’s not cheap. If I am honest with you, I am doing okay financially, but my wife recently wanted to go and see Billy Joel, and when I saw the price of the tickets I was like ‘what’ (laughter). I was calling everyone who I knew trying to get some free tickets (laughter). I honestly could not believe just how expensive those tickets were. So, taking all of that onboard; if people want to hear the songs that they grew up with; the songs that they love and the songs that take them back to a moment in time, then that is okay.

Part of our job is to facilitate that, and I also get to indulge myself and play some deeper cuts. There are a lot of fans out there who are very hard core, and so we will occasionally throw in a couple of songs from Superstar Car Wash, something like that, simply because I think that it is important for us to entertain those fans. We are starting to play a longer set now, which is good, but I still don’t understand just how Bruce Springsteen can play for over three hours; I just don’t get it. Once you get into the realms of three hours, that is no longer a concert, it suddenly becomes an event. Plus, you must remember that he changes the show every night. I wish that we did more of that. Having said that, his catalogue is so deep; he is working with over forty-five years’ worth of music. That really is a lot of music, it’s crazy.

You formed the band back in 1986. Could you ever have envisaged that you would still be doing it some thirty-four years later?

In one word; no. And that is why we still have the name Goo Goo Dolls. If I had thought that there was going to be a future in it, I would have most definitely changed that name to something a little more sensible. But then I think to myself The Smashing Pumpkins and Red Hot Chilli Peppers; our name is just as stupid as theirs’ (laughter).

Have you enjoyed the ride so far?

That’s interesting. We were recently talking about this during a very long van ride, and we just started talking about it. A guy that works with us said “what’s it been like” to which I replied, “well it was great, but you actually pay for it in ways that suck”. The thing that I personally like the least about it is when people treat me differently to any normal guy. Don’t get me wrong, I like having fans at our shows, but you need friends. Sometimes friends are lacking because you travel the world constantly, so you miss the roots. Then I begin to get envious of my friends that have stayed in the same place their whole lives. Then they get envious of me and you must be very careful because everyone wants to steal your money; the record companies and everybody out there wants to try and rip you off.

Along the way we have lost friends, we have lost marriages, but luckily we didn’t lose any children in the process, but we have pissed a lot of people off along the way just by the virtue of being successful. The big take away from that is, for me at least is that; you have to be around people who are happy for you when you are doing well. I do my best to be happy for everybody who is doing well, like them or not. Don’t get me wrong, it is not always easy, sometimes you think ‘that talentless piece of shit, how did he wind up being so successful’ (laughter). Then I take a step back and go ‘why not’. I think that it is better to want everybody to be happy than it is to wallow in self-pity and loathing. I gave up to comparing myself to other people a very long time ago now, but, take it from me, it is not always easy because this is also my job and I want to be great.

I was never any good at sports; I have always been athletic but in a private way. I have always worked out, taken care of my body, but I have never gotten into team sports or anything like that because I simply was never good at them. So, what I really got competitive about was music.

After all this time together, do you and Robby argue?

Yes (laughter). I can’t decide if we are an old married couple, or just a couple of brothers who are together in this band. After doing it for thirty something years it just makes you want to roll your eyes at each other sometimes (laughter). Having said all of that, there is no question about it, I love the guy. Only the other day we were screaming at each other over something stupid, so stupid that I can’t even remember what it was (laughter). It’s at moments like that when I start to think about Ray and Dave Davies of The Kinks getting into their fistfights (laughter). I think that a lot of it is down to proximity too. I live five hundred miles from Robby, so I think that that helps (laughter).

What would you say has been the highlight of your career so far?

One of the highlights would have to be when we were nominated four times for a Grammy, and don’t get me wrong, that is very good for business, but winning one would have been nicer (laughter). The nomination was great; it bought so much press and so much attention to the band, that it really propelled us upwards a little bit. Thinking about it, I have got to say, a highpoint in my life was the day that I didn’t have to work a day job anymore. But having said that, it was also a little bit frightening because I had always been a bartender. I also had a food cart that I ran, and even though I had always played in a band, I had always got a couple of side hustles going on.

So finally, when I didn’t have to do those other things anymore and I had to dedicate myself to being a fulltime songwriter, it was a little frightening because I would often think ‘are you really a songwriter or is this just something that you do in your spare time’. Getting together with the band, writing songs, playing and doing all of that was a relief from doing all the drudgery of all of these menial labour jobs.

Testing your memory now, what was the first record that you bought?

The first record that my mom gave me the money to buy, which was one American dollar and six cents, because of the tax, that was exactly what she gave me (laughter). I went off to a local department store all on my own, and I bought a 45 of Fox On The Run by Sweet. That really was amazing. Plus, they gave me a free yellow adapter for the middle of the 45 (laughter).

Who did you first see performing live?

The first concert that I ever saw was Van Halen and I was around twelve years old at the time. I have to say that the whole experience was terrifying; I had never heard anything that loud before in my life. It was also the first time that I had ever smelt weed (laughter). I really was terrified, and I was heard to say that I never ever wanted to go to a live concert again. I think that seeing Van Halen was what propelled me into really seeking out different music and my older sisters were very much into bands like The Clash. What you have to remember is that in a town like Buffalo, New York, a band like The Clash back in 1982 never got played on the radio out there.

Over here in America The Clash had just the one hit which was Train In Vain. After that they didn’t have another hit in America until Should I Stay Or Should I Go and Rock The Casbah. When I was in High School, I bought my Echo & The Bunnymen Heaven Up Here album into school to give to a friend, and it was like if you didn’t like Lynyrd Skynyrd, Van Halen and all of those hair metal bands, they would give you shit like ‘Echo & The Bunnymen, well they sound like a bunch of pansies’ (laughter). The problem was that they were all frightened of something a little different.

What was the last song or piece of music that made you cry?

Oh my god, where the hell did that come from (laughter). I always get a lump in my throat whenever I hear Nobody Said It Was Easy by Coldplay. It is such a well written piece of music, plus it is also the sentiment of the song. There really is something about Chris Martins voice; he has got one of those once in a generation voices. I know that I will most probably catch shit because I like Coldplay but (laughter).

I must say that here in the UK there is a tendency to find a reason not to like Coldplay as opposed to finding a reason to like them.

Really, well you can edit that bit right out (laughter).

John, on that note let me once again thank you for taking the time to speak to me today; it’s been great, and I am hoping to be photographing you over here in Birmingham.

Thanks Kevin, I have loved talking to you man, it’s really been fun. I will make sure that I have shaved, and I promise to wear some clean clothes (laughter).

Goo Goo Dolls ballad Iris tops one million UK sales ahead of Valentine’s Day

The pop-rock classic earns mega-hit status in the UK as it reaches a huge sales landmark.

By Rob Copsey

Whether you celebrate Valentine’s Day or not, it’s difficult to avoid revisiting at least a handful of classic love songs when February 14 rolls around. Come on now, don’t deny it.

While love is always popular subject in pop, we’re talking about those big numbers of the ballad variety: Celine Dion’s Think Twice. Aerosmith’s I Don’t Want To Miss A Thing. Whitney’s I Will Always Love You.

Add to that list Goo Goo Dolls, whose slow burner hit Iris has reached the pinnacle of mega-hit status in the UK as it tops one million pure sales in the UK, with 1.003 million downloads and physical CD sales, according to Official Charts Company data. It’s a rare feat to achieve in 2020, when the preference is often to stream music.

Iris’s million-seller status is the latest feat in the song's particularly unique journey. While it was a big hit in the US, Iris missed the Top 40 on the Official UK Singles Chart when it was first released in 1998, debuting at Number 50 in July. A re-release the following year saw it enter the Top 40 for just one week, landing at Number 26.

Still, awareness of the song and its popularity steadily grew, and the introduction of downloads into the Official Chart in 2005 gave the song a new lease of life, spending six months in the lower half of the Top 100 between 2006-2007.

Iris saw its biggest resurgence in 2011, when it was a popular choice of audition song on The X Factor, notably by finalist Frankie Cocozza, whose rendition during the show’s Bootcamp stage sent it to Number 3 on the Official Singles Chart the following week.

Iris has so far managed 22 separate chart runs in the UK appearances in the Official Singles Chart – the last was in 2015 – totalling 92 weeks in the Top 100. Over the past year in the UK, it has been downloaded an average of 148 times a week and streamed around 410,000 times a week, while its music video gets 95,000 plays a week on average.

Band frontman John Rzeznik told "I’m so happy that this song has had such a long life in the UK. Thank you to everyone who gave us this amazing gift." See Goo Goo Dolls full Official Chart history, click on ‘Chart Facts’ to see the stats and week by week chart positions for Iris.

Iris - the title of which was inspired by a country singer named Iris DeMent – has, 22 years on, slowly-but-surely earned its place in the love ballads hall of fame. Its unreservedly romantic lyrics such as “you’re the closest to heaven that I’ll ever be” and “I just don’t want to miss you tonight” have made it an extremely popular choice for one particular occasion: never underestimate the power of a wedding song.

By Ryan Boldrey |

The Goo Goo Dolls have recorded five Top Three hits over the span of their 35-year career, including No. 1 smash “Slide” and high-rising singles “Iris," “Name,” “Black Balloon” and “Here is Gone.”

And while there’s no telling where the Buffalo, New York, rock-and-rollers’ most recent single, “Autumn Leaves,” will land on the Billboard charts, one thing is for certain — the iconic Kalamazoo State Theatre will forever be associated with the song.

The band, which took center stage at the theater Nov. 8 as part of its 2019 Miracle Pill Tour, decided to use live-shot footage from the show as the backdrop for the brand-new official “Autumn Leaves” video.

Management at the theater knew the Goo Goo Dolls’ production team was filming, but they did not know what the band’s intentions were for the footage, said Shannon DeVries, the State Theatre’s director of programming and production.

Seeing the finished product, released Feb. 4, highlight all the nooks and crannies of the 92-year-old venue was definitely exciting for DeVries as well as marketing director Harry Phillips.

“Obviously it’s a thrill to have a band as big as the Goo Goo Dolls use the Kalamazoo State Theatre as the backdrop for their new single," Phillips said.

"The video really showcases what an amazing experience it is to see a show at the Kalamazoo State Theatre and reminds the Kalamazoo community what an amazing gem they have right in their own backyard.”

The Goo Goo Dolls used the video in conjunction with the announcement of a 29-date summer headlining tour, the dates of which were also released Feb. 4.

The band has one Michigan stop on the tour on Aug. 9 at Freedom Hill in Sterling Heights.

In today’s Podcast, recorded on the day last week that Goo Goo Dolls’ summer tour tickets went on sale, Gen and Annie announce a new contest for Valentines’ week and explain yet another reason why Ticketmaster is f’ing evil.

Goo Goo Dolls News & Info / Re: Goo Goo Dolls 2020 Summer Tour Dates!
« on: February 08, 2020, 03:01 PM »
Hey guys! Can someone tell me what is included with the Platinum tickets? I purchased 2 through the presale and can’t find the info anywhere! Thanks!

Platinum tickets are just tickets only. Here's a little info. from Ticketmaster -

What are Official Platinum Seats?
Official Platinum Seats are premium tickets to concerts and other events made available by artists and event providers through Ticketmaster. They give fans fair and safe access to some of the best seats in the house.

Are Official Platinum Seats resale tickets?
No. Official Platinum Seats were not purchased initially and then posted for resale; they are being sold for the first time through Ticketmaster. Ticketmaster's Official Platinum Seats program enables market-based pricing (adjusting prices according to supply and demand) for live event tickets, similar to how airline tickets and hotel rooms are sold. The goal is to give the most passionate fans fair and safe access to the best tickets, while enabling artists and other people involved in staging live events to price tickets closer to their true value.

Goo Goo Dolls News & Info / Goo Goo Dolls 2020 Summer Tour Dates!
« on: February 04, 2020, 05:41 PM »
The Goo Goo Dolls will be hitting the road this summer with special guests Lifehouse and Forest Blakk.
Presales begin on Wednesday, 2/5/20 and public on sale begins on Friday, 2/7/20. Head to
for more information and ticket links.

July 23 – Boise, ID @ Ford Idaho Center Amphitheater
July 26 – Portland, OR @ Oregon Zoo Amphitheater
July 28 – Salt Lake City, UT @ USANA Amphitheater
July 29 – Morrison, CO @ Red Rocks Amphitheater
July 31 – Maryland Heights, MO @ Saint Louis Music Park
August 1 – Lincoln, NE @ Pinewood Bowl Theater
August 3 – Kansas City, MO @ Starlight Theatre
August 5 – Huber Heights, OH @ Rose Music Center
August 6 – Indianapolis, IN @ The Amphitheater At White River State Park
August 7 – Chicago, IL @ Huntington Bank Pavilion at Northerly Island
August 9 – Sterling Heights, MI @ Michigan Lottery Amphitheatre at Freedom Hill
August 10 – Toronto, ON @ Budweiser Stage
August 12 – Cleveland, OH @ Jacobs Pavilion at Nautica
August 13 – Vienna, VA @ Wolf Trap
August 15 – Holmdel, NJ @ PNC Bank Arts Center
August 16 – Syracuse, NY @ St. Joseph’s Health Amphitheater at Lakeview
August 18 – Boston, MA @ Rockland Trust Bank Pavilion
August 19 – Gilford, NH @ Bank of New Hampshire Pavilion
August 21 – Darien Center, NY @ Darien Lake Amphitheater
August 22 – Philadelphia, PA @ TD Pavilion at the Mann
August 23 – Saratoga Springs, NY @ Saratoga Performing Arts Center
August 25 – Raleigh, NC @ Red Hat Amphitheater
August 26 – Jacksonville, FL @ Daily’s Place
August 28 – Charlotte, NC @ Charlotte Metro Credit Union Amphitheatre
August 29 – Nashville, TN @ Ascend Amphitheater
August 30 – Atlanta, GA @ Cadence Bank Amphitheatre at Chastain Park
September 1 – Houston, TX @ Smart Financial Centre at Sugar Land
September 2 – Irving, TX @ The Pavilion at Toyota Music Factory
September 5 – Los Angeles, CA @ The Greek Theatre

Lifehouse, Forest Blakk will support the alt-rock legends on upcoming North American tour

By Suzy Exposito

Multi-platinum alt-rockers Goo Goo Dolls are plotting to hit the road this summer in support of their 2019 album, Miracle Pill.

The Buffalo band teased their upcoming North American run on Tuesday morning with a brand new video for the song “Autumn Leaves.”

The latest single off their pop-facing LP, “Autumn Leaves” is a stirring piano rock ballad that culminates in a mighty farewell. The video was filmed during a live concert last November at the Kalamazoo State Theater in Kalamazoo, Michigan. “Life is change, we move on,” sings Johnny Rzeznik; the drama builds, then dissipates, as he mentally prepares to drift away from a loved one: “Where you go, I hope the summer goes along.”

Bound together by music since 1986, founding guitarist-vocalist Rzeznik and bassist-vocalist Robby Takac have recorded 12 albums under the Goo Goo Dolls moniker. How exactly have they managed to write new material and tour so frequently over the past three decades? “Robbie and I grew up in very blue-collar working-class town,” Rzeznik tells Rolling Stone. “That same work ethic applies to whatever we do in life. We respect each other’s boundaries and we have learned over the years to get along, or ignore each other when we need to.”

Goo Goo Dolls will be joined this summer by fellow rock radio veterans Lifehouse and Canadian singer-songwriter Forest Blakk. “We’re putting together a really exciting show that will include the staples, new material, and a few curveballs,” says Rzeznik, perhaps hinting at an early Nineties deep cut (or two). “We can’t wait to see all of our friends and fans we have made over the years and hopefully make some new friends this summer.”

Presales for the summer tour begin today at 10 a.m. local time. Tickets will be available to the general public beginning Friday, February 7th. A complete list of ticket options can be found at

Goo Goo Dolls 2020 North American Tour Dates

July 23 – Boise, ID @ Ford Idaho Center Amphitheater
July 26 – Portland, OR @ Oregon Zoo Amphitheater
July 28 – Salt Lake City, UT @ USANA Amphitheater
July 29 – Morrison, CO @ Red Rocks Amphitheater
July 31 – Maryland Heights, MO @ Saint Louis Music Park
August 1 – Lincoln, NE @ Pinewood Bowl Theater
August 3 – Kansas City, MO @ Starlight Theatre
August 5 – Huber Heights, OH @ Rose Music Center
August 6 – Indianapolis, IN @ The Amphitheater At White River State Park
August 7 – Chicago, IL @ Huntington Bank Pavilion at Northerly Island
August 9 – Sterling Heights, MI @ Michigan Lottery Amphitheatre at Freedom Hill
August 10 – Toronto, ON @ Budweiser Stage
August 12 – Cleveland, OH @ Jacobs Pavilion at Nautica
August 13 – Vienna, VA @ Wolf Trap
August 15 – Holmdel, NJ @ PNC Bank Arts Center
August 16 – Syracuse, NY @ St. Joseph’s Health Amphitheater at Lakeview
August 18 – Boston, MA @ Rockland Trust Bank Pavilion
August 19 – Gilford, NH @ Bank of New Hampshire Pavilion
August 21 – Darien Center, NY @ Darien Lake Amphitheater
August 22 – Philadelphia, PA @ TD Pavilion at the Mann
August 23 – Saratoga Springs, NY @ Saratoga Performing Arts Center
August 25 – Raleigh, NC @ Red Hat Amphitheater
August 26 – Jacksonville, FL @ Daily’s Place
August 28 – Charlotte, NC @ Charlotte Metro Credit Union Amphitheatre
August 29 – Nashville, TN @ Ascend Amphitheater
August 30 – Atlanta, GA @ Cadence Bank Amphitheatre at Chastain Park
September 1 – Houston, TX @ Smart Financial Centre at Sugar Land
September 2 – Irving, TX @ The Pavilion at Toyota Music Factory
September 5 – Los Angeles, CA @ The Greek Theatre

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