Goo Goo Dolls strike the right chords

Kristen Kotz

COURTESY Warner Bros. Records

Credit: Jason Hall

Alternative rockers the Goo Goo Dolls are still going strong despite having been around since 1986.

The band recently released a new single, “Before It’s Too Late,” for the summer blockbuster movie Transformers. The band’s most recent album, Let Love In (2006), is currently available in stores and features the single “Better Days.” Let Love In is the band’s eighth album.

Vocalist Johnny Rzeznik, bassist Robbie Takac and drummer Mike Malinin make up the band.

Takac said on the band’s website,, that his interest in music began at a very young age.

“I was never much with a baseball or a football, so it is where I naturally fit in,” he said.

Rzeznik and Takac met each other while in college in their hometown of Buffalo, N.Y., and began to play music together.

Takac said the band owes a lot of its success to its fans.

“The fact is, if the fans go away, this all goes away,” he said.

While the band is busy with their tour, many other projects are in the works.

The band is currently working on building a new recording space after tearing down their old space, Trackmaster Recording Studios, in Buffalo. The Goo Goo Dolls want to record there again and plan on letting local bands use the space as well, Takac said.

Takac said the Goo Goo Dolls plan on “going digital” and releasing more of the bands music online first.

“It’s what makes the most sense,” he said.

Aside from the Goo Goo Dolls, Takac also has a few personal projects of his own. He has a new musical project called Amungus – an eclectic mix of techno, dance and R&B. He has an independent label called Chameleon West Records, which has produced 13 albums over the past five years.

Takac is also the founder of Buffalo’s Music is Art Festival, which helps raise money for music programs in public schools.

“Schools need to pay attention to that group of people,” Takac said.

The foundation has over 80 programs running in Buffalo schools and has raised more than $250,000.

Takac said one of the songs he is most proud of is “We are the Normal,” which the band produced with Paul Westerberg.

“I remember being done with the song and thinking, ‘Wow, we did something really cool and different,'” Takac said.

In his spare time, Takac says that he likes to go on walks and see the sights of the town the band is visiting.

He also said that one thing his hectic schedule won’t allow him to do is take a long vacation but added the off-time might be too much for him.

“I think I would go stir-crazy,” he said.

The band just returned to the United States after touring in Japan and the United Kingdom. They were scheduled to play at Tower City Amphitheater in Cleveland Aug. 28, but the show has been rescheduled for Sept. 26 at the Agora Theatre due to inclement weather in the Midwest, according to the band’s website. All tickets for the Aug. 28 show will be honored at the September show. Refunds are also available from wherever the tickets were purchased.

Contact all correspondent Kristen Kotz at [email protected].