Currently visiting college campuses on the MP3.com Music and Technology tour, the Goo Goo Dolls are still tweaking the looks they've been using for their Dizzy Up the Girl tour. LD Don LoDico has been working with the band since August 1998.
The LD brought board operator Mike Graves on board the following January. "For the summer tour the guys wanted to leave the fans feeling that they had seen more than just a band playing on a stage," says the LD. "They wanted to give a big show. The plan was to have three articulating trusses hung at different angles. Each one had motors on it so we could move them from a Skjonberg controller."
Ed and Ted's Excellent Lighting supplied the tour's lighting equipment, which included Vari*Lite(R) VL5s(TM), VL6s(TM), VL7s(TM), and High End Systems Technobeams(R) and Studio Colors(R). "The band wanted some shiny soft goods, so we got a beautiful black prism drop and a black knit shimmer drop--it takes any color and looks great," LoDico says. "Helene Romans at Rose Brand helped me get the right materials.
"We also purchased an old Kabuki mechanism from the Rush camp--we reworked some bits and it was as good as new," LoDico continues. "Then I added a cyc to project gobo patterns onto, and backlight with color. We opted for a 50' wide by 20' high twin white rear-projection screen."
Once on the road the band members kept coming up with new ideas. "Every time they came in for sound check they'd have a new idea," says the LD. "Johnny wanted the show to end in total chaos, and he wanted to have a video made. So Eric Eastland at All Access Staging fabricated eight 4-light Moles that would drop via electronic solenoids. We put springs on the ends of them to absorb the shock of falling 10' and it gave them a nice bounce."
Then they needed a reason for these lights to fall. "One of the short films John had made was called Greed in Action, by LA-based Crash Films," LoDico explains. "The movie ended with a nuclear explosion and we did a confetti hit, which brought us into the encore section of the show.
"The second movie was a pair of hot red lips talking on a phone, saying, 'Everything's wrong." The last image you see on the screen is a burned-out frame, and then John and Rob would hurl their guitars through the screen. Then there was more noise, the lights would fall, and the truss would move into a broken look."
The rest of the tour's crew included: tour manager David Ellison, production manager/FOH sound engineer Tim "Quake" Mark, Vari*Lite technician Kevin "Stick" Bye, electrician Mike McKinnon, electrician/moving motors technician Victor Mirabal, rigger Brian Collins, stage manager Peter Molnar, video director Robbie Alvarez, video/carpenter George Robbins, production assistant Rochelle Reber, and carpenter/ backline technician Andy Hindman.