GOO GOO DOLLS
Thursday 1 September 2006
Gates Open: 7pm
Event From: 8pm
Price: £30.00 Plus £1.50 Booking Fee
Murrayfield Stadium, Edinburgh, EH12 5PJ, GB
It was that time of year again. The Goo Goo Dolls were doing their annual UK tour, nine stops in twenty-one days. Bristol, Manchester, Edinburgh, London, Cardiff, Southampton, Reading, Glasgow, Dublin. Rachel and Martha, two 35-year old groupies, had had their tickets for months. Rachel usually took the time off work and Martha’s husband released her form caring for him and the kids to indulge in her first love.
1st September 2006
It was the part Rachel lived for, just before the band took up their instruments and the packed stadium was blown away. It was almost hypnotic, the smoky stage, the bright blue lights, the life-sized screen behind the stage, all combined with the eager chanting of the crowd. The band finally stepped onto the stage and the crowd went wild. There was an electricity in the air and Rachel found herself getting emotional. This was always her instinctive reaction to a Goo Goo Dolls concert, it all made sense when they played. She experienced a curious sensation of connectivity, like she was connected to all the atoms in the world and even to the sun, the moon, the stars, the sky. It was an almost sexual feeling or desire, this connection to the external forces around her. It was as if her soul was trying to find some kind of lasting and eternal thing to connect to and extract salvation from. Every heart longs for eternity. They performed all her favourites that night (but then again, they were all her favourites). Afterwards, she experienced the now familiar sensation of melancholy emptiness which always flooded her after a show. She wanted to abide in their lyrics and melodies forever, have them tell her about the hidden passions of her heart, as well as explain the world and all its iniquities to her. If there was no God in Rachel’s life, she filled the space with the Goo Goo Dolls. For someone who rarely allowed her emotions the privilege of surfacing, Goo Goo Dolls were a kind of kryptonite to her, shattering all her complexes.
4th September 2006
GOO GOO DOLLS
Monday 4th September 2006
Gates Open: 8pm
Event From: 9pm
Price: £25.00 Plus £1.50 Booking Fee.
The O2, Peninsula Square, London, SE10 0DX
In London, they played Sympathy. ‘Stranger than your sympathy, and this is my apology, I killed myself from the inside out, and all my fears have pushed you out.’ The song always reminded Rachel of things she would rather keep buried. Tonight, she was relieved Martha was too enchanted with John Rzeznik to notice her change in mood. Rachel had given up her baby for adoption at the age of sixteen. She had made a hasty decision based on pressures from her ashamed parents and fear of the unknown. She had known even as she signed the papers that she would always regret this moment. Something in Rachel had died the day she gave her beautiful daughter away, just twenty-four hours after her birth. For a while, her heart had skipped a beat everytime she saw a proud mother with a pram but eventually she had simply hardened her heart. She hadn’t seen the baby’s father in years, there had been a kind of silent agreement that they would go their separate ways. It had all felt so wrong, the traditionalist in Rachel had felt that in a perfect world, she should have been marrying the man who fathered her child. In spite of feeling like she had severed a link inside of herself, life went on.
Three years ago, Rachel’s adopted daughter had contacted her, asking her to meet up in a coffee shop. She had gotten as far as the car park before she had been overcome by fear and guilt. How would she justify her actions? She had also felt overwhelmingly inadequate. She was in her thirties, a single pub-waitress with the Goo Goo Dolls as her only real friend. Of course there was Martha but they only really were united by a passion for music, Martha’s life seemed a bit too neat for Rachel to feel she could share her life’s sorrows and pains. Two days later, Rachel’s daughter had contacted her and told her that she wouldn’t try again. She had even gone as far as saying that she understood why she hadn’t shown up, stating that maybe their mother-daughter reunion just wasn’t meant to be. Now when Rachel heard Sympathy by Goo Goo Dolls, she thought only of her daughter and had posted her the lyrics. ‘And stranger than your sympathy, take these things so I don’t feel, I’m killing myself from the inside out, and now my head’s been filled with doubt.’
11th September 2006
GOO GOO DOLLS
MONDAY 11TH SEPTEMBER 2010
GATES OPEN: 7PM
EVENT FROM: 8PM
PRICE: £25.00 PLUS £1.50 BOOKING FEE.
CARDIFF CF10 1NS
They began that nights set with Better Days. John Rzeznik belted out the chorus: ‘So take these words, and sing out loud, ‘cos everyone is forgiven now, ‘cos tonight’s the night the world begins again.’ As the song reached its crescendo, Rachel felt something in the atmosphere change. She felt herself get hot all over and her heart began to beat faster. Suddenly, she saw a man dressed in white, holding his arms open wide as if to embrace her. He seemed to simply radiate love, it emanated off every part of his being. He was beckoning to her and at first she shied away. He seemed so innately good that she felt she shouldn’t experience such a presence. But his eyes! Tears began to course down her face as she looked into his eyes, such eyes of love and compassion. They seemed to burn right through her, scorching to the very centre of her being. She glanced around to see if anyone else could see what she saw. Everyone else seemed oblivious; this suspended moment in time was just for her. A still and quiet voice whispered to her, ‘I chose you before you were born, I knit you together in your mother’s womb.’ Once again, feelings of fear and trepidation rose within her, if this man had always known her, what would he think of all these years she had spent acting as if he didn’t exist. What would he think of a woman her stood up her own daughter? But still the voice urged on, ‘Where the spirit of the Lord is there is freedom…come to me all you who are weary and burdened, and I shall give you rest.’ She was unable to resist the love behind these words and felt herself draw closer and closer to the man. She welcomed him first in her mind and then in her heart, the place where it really mattered. She felt herself being flooded by a peace she had never known existed…but most of all, she felt forgiven.