'Third Time was a Charm' Fan review of their #Dizzy20 Experience

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Third Time Was a Charm
Posted: January 10, 2019 in Music   

“And you ask me what I want this year…”

The first set of the Goo Goo Dolls show had wrapped up just minutes before.  John Rzeznik was intriguingly initiating the middle portion of the night with an acoustic rendition of “Better Days” – he was on vocals and was accompanied by, well, himself.  Digitally. On a video screen.  I can’t really begin to describe the way that three song set played out, but you can find footage online.  It’s worth the effort to track down because it was a very unique and cool thing to witness.  As had been the whole evening to that point.

Along with my wife it was Goo Goo Dolls concert number three in as many years.  Equaling the number as well of first-time venues for us in which we had been able to see them.  We had a feeling this was going to be the best show yet as it was the 20th anniversary tour of their Dizzy Up the Girl album so there would be a solid catalog of tunes we had yet to hear live.  We knew it would be a great night.

The concert was on November 3 which lucky for us fell on a Saturday.  Our plan was to leave early in the afternoon and make the half hour trip down to Seattle, grab dinner, wander around downtown, and then make our way to the Paramount.  We were running an hour or two behind our intended schedule as the day went along and were frantically trying to hurry out the door.  As I made one last trip to the bedroom to grab my jacket, I was halfway past the bathroom door when it flung open to the sight of my wife’s shocked, speechless expression and a pregnancy test shoved in my face.

We didn’t know how to react. It was something we both wanted, but in that moment, I don’t think any words were uttered for a solid minute (but who the hell really knows what our concept of time was in that instance) as we just held each other.  The change of a lifetime we had both been waiting for had just hit us like a ton of bricks with countless thoughts and emotions rattling their way through each of our bodies.  We kept asking and reassuring ourselves that it was real.  That it was finally happening.  Oh, yeah, and then remembered we had a concert to go to!

We blurrily set out on our original plans and enjoyed the few hours we had left before the show. Though this was the third year in a row seeing the band we love, each concert before had been an experience unto itself, and obviously this whole day was shaping up to be no different. The venue most certainly played its role and was a great setting for the whole thing. I personally had never been inside the Paramount before and was blown away by its intricate extravagance.  Its 1927 construction oozes with history and significance from all of those who have played there through the decades.

John, Robby Takac, and the rest of the guys proved as they always do that they can hold their own on any stage.  Their energy, their commitment to the music, but most importantly their devotion to their fans are all always on full display from the first chord strummed, to the last cymbal crashed.  John shows every night why he is one of the premiere front men in rock.

Between the intros and outros, he lets his guitar and his singing scream his enthusiasm.  Between the songs, he lets his heart and his soul do his talking.  The personable nature with which he addresses everyone in the room makes you feel as though bumping into him on the street would be no different than running into an old high school classmate.  To dig as deep into his family’s past as he did that night, to share the eye-watering sentimental story that he did about his mom when introing “Acoustic #3”, to bare his soul on paper and vinyl as he does to make a living – those can only been done to the degree that John does them by someone who truly loves those on the listening end.  What’s even better for us fans is he’s not alone up there.  Robby’s love for what he does, his love for the fans, and his love for sharing his most personal experiences via lyric all grab you by the eardrum and pull you in when he’s up on that stage.

Thankfully, on this particular November night the crowd was reciprocal of it all.  Belting out verse after verse all show long, singing back to the band with John’s mic was held out over them, and extremely accepting of the many stories John and Robby took the time to share throughout the show. Whether you were in the front row, up in the back row of the balcony, or choosing to simply hang out along the back wall down on the floor as we were – the guys never failed to make you feel like you had the best seat in the house.  It’s why we’ve seen them three years in a row and each experience was as magical as its predecessors.

It’s why we’re quite bummed that it doesn’t look too promising for us to see them a fourth year when they return to the area this coming June.  Not because it’s too far away.  Not because we’re burned out on seeing the boys from Buffalo.  No, it’s because we’ll be putting the final preparations in place for welcoming a new Goo fan.

At least, we hope they’ll grow up to have the same appreciation and love for the band that we do. If for no other reason than the fact that they and the Goo Goo Dolls came together to create our night of a lifetime.

The night our world began again.