15 Minutes with the Goo Goo Dolls' Johnny Rzeznik

Buffalo's favorite sons the Goo Goo Dolls are at it again, this time barnstorming on a cross-country shed tour to support the ever-catchy Let Love In (Warner Bros.) while teamed up with the Counting Crows. Singer/songwriter and all-around nice Goo guy Johnny Rzeznik recently took some time out from the road to chat Web-exclusively with S&V. I also made sure he told me the best spot in Buffalo to get a favorite local delicacy, Beef on Weck ("go to Charlie the Butcher"). Thanks, bro!

One of the underlying themes of Let Love In is "you can go home again." Were there any specific instances, encounters, or places in Buffalo that really cemented the idea that going home was truly the right thing to do to in order to make this album work? Seeing my old neighborhood was key. And being there in a long, cold winter just felt right. We really cleaned house on this album. Leaving L.A. to write it and committing to do our best work, no matter how long it took, made a difference.

"Better Days" was made available for download many, many months before the album's release - and it also became an anthem for a lot of people. Do you see things like early downloads as being important in this day and age? I think the more you're out there, the better it is for you. People have a short attention span these days...

As people are consuming music differently these days, is the CD in danger of dying? Are we moving toward a purely digital-delivery future? I don't think the CD is dying anytime soon, but the world is moving that way. As long as we get paid, I'm okay with it.

What capacity is your iPod, and what do you have on it? I have a 60-gig video iPod with 2,385 songs and 172 videos. I've got songs on there from Chet Baker, Keane, Kiss, and U2. I watch TV on my iPod when I'm on the treadmill - Bill Maher and The Colbert Report.

Radio is a tough nut to crack these days. What's your take on the state of radio? How do you get your music played in 2006? You can't make anyone play your music, but I've been lucky at radio. We do well there. Also, I have both satellite-radio services. I love the depth of programming.

What's your opinion of surround sound? Have you listened to any 5.1 recordings? Only Beck's Sea Change, and it was breathtaking. I think it's limiting, though. But if you're an audiophile and can sit still for 45 minutes, it's unbelievable.

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