“Slide” to superstardom: Goo Goo Dolls’ John Rzeznik looks back on 25 years of ‘Dizzy Up the Girl’

InterviewSeptember 22, 2023ABC Audio

Twenty-five years ago — September 22, 1998 — Goo Goo Dolls released Dizzy Up the Girl, the album that would make them bona fide stars, thanks to the hits “Slide,” “Broadway” and “Black Balloon,” as well as their signature song, “Iris.” But how does the band think it holds up as an album today? Frontman John Rzeznik says it does, but not entirely.

“That’s tough. You always listen back and it’s like, I remember … the fun that we had making that album and what a pivotal kind of time in my life it was,” he tells ABC Audio. “And there are a few things I would like to change about it, but you can’t. So, y’know, I just enjoy it for what it’s worth.”

He adds, “I skip a few of the songs.”

While “Iris” is the most successful track on Dizzy Up the Girl, John admits he didn’t even want to put it on the album because it had been released that April on the soundtrack of the film City of Angels.

“I was kind of like, ‘Ehhh, we already did that,'” John recalls. “And [the record company was] just like, ‘You’re crazy and you’re blowing an enormous opportunity.’ So I was like, ‘OK.'”

As for the song’s title, which is never mentioned in the lyrics, John says he didn’t know what to name it, so he took inspiration from a female folk singer.

“I was looking through an LA Weekly at the time and … it was an ad for Iris Dement,” John recalls. “And I was like, ‘”Iris,” that’s a really beautiful name. I like that.’ And so I said, ‘Call the song “Iris.”‘”

A 25th anniversary version of Dizzy Up the Girl, pressed on metallic ice silver vinyl, is available now.