NRR journalist, Lucy Render-Kaplan, spoke with Robby Takac about the current tour, music taste, and band history.

I first met Robby Takac, bassist, singer and one of the founding members of the Goo Goo Dolls 15 years ago. I was working for Red Bull Energy Drink, and the band came to play a few acoustic sets on the Q101’s Mancow in The Morning Show. He gave me one of the egg shakers he played with. I was instantly smitten.

Recently, I had the chance to speak with Robby, as the band tours with Daughtry and Plain White Tees, on their way to the Goo Goo Dolls show in Chicago at FirstMerit Bank Pavillion at Northerly Island.

LRK: At the same time that I like knowing I’ve been following you for so long, it also makes me feel really old… Now, 28 years and 10 albums later, you’ve recently released Magnetic. What was the inspiration behind the latest album?
RT: It was time to make another Goo Goo Dolls album!
LRK: What does the name Magnetic refer to?
RT: It sounded catchy, it was short and it looked good in print …
LRK: (laughs) It does! It has almost a superhero sounding quality to it…maybe because of Magneto? What is different on this album, from the past 9?
RT: We used many different producers on this album and tracked it one song at a time instead of working on 15 songs at the same time, it makes for a much more varied, relaxed sound we think …
LRK: I agree – when I first was listening to it, I thought it had more of a relaxed sound. Rolling Stone has named this tour one of the best of 2014 –
RT: That’s badass right?
LRK: It’s pretty incredible! What has been YOUR favorite tour?
RT: In a romantic way the old van tours in the 80s were a challenge and a lot of fun, but all of the tours have been amazing ….
LRK: How did you hook up with Daughtry for this tour? While I’ve always listened to you guys, I haven’t listened to him much.
RT: We’ve been trying to get a package together w/ Daughtry for a few years now, it just seemed to work out this time …. cool show.
LRK: Is there anyone left that you are just dying to tour with?
RT: Tom Petty would be fun, we already toured with The Stones ….that was my bucket list tour …
LRK: I would definitely follow that tour around! Petty and Dylan were my first real concert. I was three. Is there any song that really hit it big that you were surprised did so well?
RT: Name blew our minds, we had never had a hit before.
LRK: Definitely an all-time fave. Who inspires YOU?
RT: Anyone who makes it through their day smiling every day….
LRK: Let me in on the start of a new album…What is your creative process like? Anything you listen to for inspiration, anywhere you like to go?
RT: I like to listen to the last few records and just try to get a grip on what we’ve been doing
LRK: Some performers have superstitions or rituals when they’re performing, do you have any?
RT: I just cover most of my body in band aids and have at it…
LRK: Heads up photographers coming to Sunday’s show! “Don’t miss the incredible band-aid wearing man!” What music do YOU listen to when you work and in your car?
RT: At work: Goo Goo dolls. In my car: British Metal
LRK: You’re coming to Chicago this weekend – what do you like most about playing in Chicago?
RT: Being in Chicago!
LRK: Funny. But I’m glad you’re a fan! Is there anything you like to do each time you come to town?
RT: Have Pizza!
LRK: I’ll share a deep dish with you anytime. Chicago is excited to have you perform Sunday. What are your fans in store for when they see your performance this weekend? Any surprises?
RT: Lots of good rock… just lots of good rock…
LRK: I don’t doubt it! Thanks for your time, Robby!


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Photo credit: Jeff Crespi of National Rock Review