Men’s Journal Everyday Warrior Podcast Episode 28: Goo Goo Dolls Frontman John Rzeznik

Men’s Journal’s Everyday Warrior With Mike Sarraille is a podcast that inspires individuals to live more fulfilling lives by having conversations with disrupters and high performers in all walks of life. In episode 28, we spoke to John Rzeznik, guitarist and frontman of the American rock band Goo Goo Dolls.

Listen to the full episode above (scroll down for the transcript) and see more from this series below.

This interview has not been edited for length or clarity.


Mike Sarraille:
Welcome, John. It is so damn good to have you on here. And I know we were talking before we, uh, recorded here, but this is like a trip down memory of the lane cuz I grew up on, uh, on your music. And when this came through, they said, Hey, do you want to interview John Resnick? It, it’s like, Why are you even ask him, you know, the answer. And I started going back and just listening to all the songs and I’m like, it reminds me of this time in high school or this time in my early days in the military, uh, pretty wicked how we tie a, uh, a memory to a specific sort of song in our life.

John Rzeznik:
Yeah, Yeah. It is amazing that that happens. That there’s, there’s music is definitely, it Marks time in our lives. You know,

Mike Sarraille:
Do, do you have that lot

John Rzeznik:
Memories?

Mike Sarraille:
Do, do people come up a lot and they’re like, Hey, that one song reminds me of this time of my life. Help me to help me get through this period. Or not. Yeah.

John Rzeznik:
Yeah. Those are the, those are the best moments. To me, those are the most gratifying moments of, of what I’m doing or trying to do is when I’ll meet somebody at a meet and greeted or at a show or, or, or just on the street and they’ll be like, Man, that song really helped me. You know, I had, I was having a bad time in high school and, and, uh, or whatever. And, and, and that song really spoke to me. And that to me that’s like, wow, something that came out of my brain connected with this person and, and I was actually able to be there for somebody in a weird way, like a tiny little way. But at least it was something that, that helped them hang on. Or, or it reminds ’em of a great time in their life. Whatever, you know, whatever the circumstance.

Mike Sarraille:
Is that like fuel for you? Cause I know you probably just, that’s, I mean, that’s impact at its finest. Does that just, do you walk away from that and you’re like, Okay, we gotta keep on going. We gotta write more. Yeah,

John Rzeznik:
Yeah. I mean, I, I walk away from that and it’s like, you hope you, you’re able to retain a, a, a little bit of that empathy, you know? And it, it does help when somebody says, Hey man, what you do is good. You know, And that was, that was always one of the things that when we were coming up in music, the people, the older people, I always listened to the, the old school music guys. You know, anybody who was a generation or two generations behind me, I wanted, I wanted to learn from them because these people were very successful. And, um, and, um, so, you know, and they would say things like, Look, if you’re gonna create art or you’re gonna make music or do whatever you’re doing, uh, or you’re gonna go out and you’re gonna make a billion dollars in the stock market, try to leave the world a little bit better than you found it. Just a little bit. You know? And I, and, and that’s something that I’ve, I’ve, I’ve tried to take to heart, you know, I mean, you know, there’s music that’s medicine. There’s music that’s candy, and there’s music that’s poison. Just like people,

Mike Sarraille:
You know. Okay, wait, wait, break that down for me. Gi gimme examples there of what you consider Amongs, the three. I’ve never heard that, but I do, I think I do know where you’re going.

John Rzeznik:
Well, like some music, you know, it’s like, there are people in my life who are medicine to me. I call them when I’m in trouble. Now I have to make sure I also call them when I’m doing well. So they’re not like, Jesus Christ, the only time you ever call me is when you’re having a problem. But, uh, um, but there are people in my life who are, are medicine and there are people in my life who are like candy and I, and I hang with them and talk to them when I just wanna have a good time. Um, and then there’s people that are poison and those are the, those are the telephone numbers that you lose, you know, delete.

Mike Sarraille:
But we’ve all hung with poison from time to time, probably earlier in our lives Yeah. Than than later, earlier

John Rzeznik:
In our lives where we’re, we’re, uh, you know, I, I got to admit, I mean, because, you know, I’m an addict and a recovering addict and, and alcoholic and, and sometimes the poison people are the most fun, you know, especially when you’re in that state of mind, you don’t understand how toxic they are. But, but, uh, because you’re so toxic yourself. Cuz I was so toxic myself, you know?

Mike Sarraille:
Yeah. As you’re saying that, man, now I’m thinking of my 37 to about 40 until I turned 40, uh, coming off a divorce, leaving the military, uh, hanging with a, and I don’t, I want to be careful not to call them poison, but they were a fun group. It just, their lives revolved around the bar. Thursday night, Friday night, Saturday night and Sunday night to where it was just after two years of that. Yeah. I just had a break free. So I, I want to go back cuz you know, rarely do people know about the history of high profile musicians such as yourself, uh, you know, sports stars, but, uh, one you were born in, uh, Buffalo, New York, which I don’t know if you’re a Buffalo Bills fan, but man, uh, you guys just can’t seem to, uh, to pull it out, dude.

John Rzeznik:
I mean, you know. Yeah, that was, that was rough. That was rough In the nineties. We, we sort of, my heart broke over and over and over again for, uh, you know, for my town, you know, because cuz the bills are like everything, you know, and the city, you know, I love my city and it’s always gonna be my home and my whole family still lives there. And I’m up there like six, seven times a year. Um, and it’s coming back in this really amazing way. It’s like people in Buffalo are, are naturally a hard workers B, honest and, and, uh, c they, they have the ability to adapt and, and, and reinvent themselves. And that’s what’s going on now. This ma major reinvention of the whole place. And, and you’re seeing the arts and, uh, you know, uh, entrepreneurship just growing exponentially in this place. And it’s great to see it because people are doing it themselves and they’re finally getting a little help from, from the, the local government and, and all that, you

Mike Sarraille:
Know? That’s good to hear, man. That’s good to hear. Um, so you were the youngest, did I get this right? Your, your older siblings are all girls your sisters?

John Rzeznik:
Yes. <laugh>. Yeah. Yeah, yeah, yeah. And they say, they say, Oh, you’re the baby. It’s like, no, I’m not the baby. I’m the last kid. By the time I came around, my parents were so burnt <laugh>, you know, it was like my sisters had to take care of me most of the time,

Mike Sarraille:
You know, and, and quite literally they did. Towards the end, um, when you were 15 and 16, you, you lost your mom or your father and your, your mother, uh, respectively back to back. Yeah. Is that correct?

John Rzeznik:
Yeah, yeah, that is. Yeah.

Mike Sarraille:
Okay. For a 15, 16 year old, my, my biggest drama in life was, uh, probably a girl breaking up with me. I mean, how does a 15, 16 year old, I mean, you lose your father and you probably, you know, not that you’re getting over that, but a year later you lose your mom as well. I mean, bro, walk me through that.

John Rzeznik:
Um, well, it was, I, I was, um, when that happened with my mom and I actually was holding her in my arms when she passed. And, um, I don’t know, it was like, it was shock really. And I remember it was like, I remember they had to take her to the hospital and then, and um, you know, she was obviously already gone. And, um, so, uh, it was like, I remember going to bed that night really, really late. And I just kept putting more and more blankets on me. But I, cause I, I couldn’t get warm, you know? Um, it was really a freaky situation. Um, and I was quite honestly, I was, was like, you know, we were broke. I mean, we were, we were so poor. It’s like, well, yeah, where are you gonna go? You know? So there was, there was a brief period of time where I was like, hopping around to friends’ homes and things like that.

John Rzeznik:
And like, you know, before I could get it together, it was really, it was really difficult. Um, you know, but one of the, one of the most amazing, brilliant things about being that young and, and being, being caught up in, in, in this pretty crazy situation is that, that I was, I was able to go, Okay, this is bad and this sucks and my heart is broken, but I have to keep going. And I think that was, it taught me a really important lesson in retrospect, you know? And it, and it really was. It’s like, you don’t have a choice, man. You get, you either get up or die. So get up and go. You know? And that, that was really became a motivating factor in my life. And I had, you know, and I, I, I didn’t have a lot of resources. We didn’t have any money. Um, you know, and you just kind of, you, you yet adapt and, and, and make it work. You don’t have a choice. So what do you do

Mike Sarraille:
Again for a 15 or 16 year old? That’s a pretty mature outlook. Did your parents raise you that way? To always pick yourself up by the bootstraps? Get back after it?

John Rzeznik:
Yeah. Yeah. I mean, cuz we didn’t really have anything when we were growing up, you know? And there were five kids. My dad was a mailman, my mom was a school teacher. Um, you know, and it was, it was, uh, yeah, we weren’t like starving, but, you know, I mean, we didn’t have anything. Um, and, and my dad, my dad, my, it’s really kind of, my dad was older. He was, he was actually, he was at the end of World War ii. He was in the Navy. And yeah, when it was like, you know, all my friend’s dads, they were like, you know, Korea, Vietnam, those kind of things. But, um, he got, he was, he was a dark individual. And my dad, my dad was very kind of a dark guy. And he would tell me, it was like he was preparing me. Like we would, we would be, cuz we were the only two males in the house, so we had to get the hell out of there.

John Rzeznik:
Sometimes he would be like, Get in the car, we’re getting outta here cause it’s all women. And, um, and so, and he would tell me things like, Listen, I’m not always gonna be here. I’m not always gonna be here. I’m not gonna hold your hand. I can’t take care of you. You know, you gotta learn to take care of yourself. You gotta learn to take care of yourself. You know, And it was like, and my mother was very much so like, come here, I’m gonna show you how to sew a button on your shirt so you don’t need a woman to do this for you. You know, this is not what women are for. So I’m gonna teach you how to do the laundry. I’m gonna teach you how to cook. I’m gonna teach you how to take care of yourself. And it was like, in a strange way, the way you phrased that, it just sparked this memory of, of, of just, yeah. Yeah. The whole time I was growing up, it was like, it was like going to boy scout camp. They’re like teaching me survival skills, you know?

Mike Sarraille:
It’s amazing now that you look back, it’s, they were preparing you. Not that they knew what was coming, but, uh, you’ve gotta be appreciative that

John Rzeznik:
I think my dad did though. Yeah. I think my dad did though, because he was, he was very, he was, he was a hardcore alcoholic. But once again, that guy was an everyday warrior because I don’t know how you get up every morning at four 30 in the morning, go to work, carry mail, work at the post office, and then drink a quarter whiskey and then get up and do it every day for 20 something years. And, and, but as dark as he was, he, he took care of his family. And that, that’s, that’s what growing up in a place like Buffalo is like, you take care of your family no matter what, you know? And he did until, until he just couldn’t anymore. And the disease got him. Yeah. You know,

Mike Sarraille:
That was a hard generation. That was a generation when you look at it. Oh hell yeah. So, you know, I’m wildly proud of my generation. We went to war for close to 20 years, but that generation faced a level of combat that far exceeds what we saw in the battlefield. I mean, far exceeds. I mean, they lost hundreds on du day alone in a matter of minutes. Uh, yeah. In comparison to our war. But they just came home. You know what they did? They got to work and, uh, yeah, they got

John Rzeznik:
To work.

Mike Sarraille:
I think there was an unhealthy aspect as we, we, we start to talk about mental health is they compartmentalize that though. Very few of them never talked about it. Even my grandfather who was third day of Normandy and he was the, in the black forest turning outta the battle of the bulge, never spoke about it. Wow. They just internalized. Isn’t

John Rzeznik:
That, that, that was Well, what was, I mean, that was, that’s the way that generation was though. It’s like, that’s in the past. Forget about it. We gotta move forward. I think that there’s a certain element of that that, I mean, it’s like a survival skill in a way, don’t you think? I don’t know what, Why do you think that generation was wired that way?

Mike Sarraille:
You know, I, I, I couldn’t give you a good answer and I could say the way you just framed it, there’s probably both good and bad with that. Yeah. Yeah. There definitely was a, a, a, I would say a higher element of emotional strength, mental strength within that generation. Is that,

John Rzeznik:
Is that called grit? Or is that mental toughness or what, You know,

Mike Sarraille:
I don’t think you’re mutually exclusive in, in, in my opinion. Right. I, I think emotional strength is very much a part of, uh, of grit. But we, I mean, we have seen, but it’s also, you know, so I’ve got a good clinical psychologist friend who says, you know, mental health issues have increased exponentially since World War ii. And of course the diagnosis of mental health is subjective. Uh, if I come into a doctor and say, Hey, I have mental health issues, they can’t say no, you don’t. Um, I, I, I do agree with people being more vulnerable, uh, discussing their problems, cuz that’s the best way to get through them. But there, there has to be an element of that greatest generation that, that grit that we instill back into our society. And again, that’s my opinion of regardless if you have mental health issues, and first off, lemme tell you that somebody said it, great mental health issues does not mean mental weakness. Like, people are down welcome dose.

John Rzeznik:
I agree with you. I agree with you. It’s like, you know, I think so. I think, Yeah. Yeah. I, yeah. I think if my father was able to talk about his experiences, because, you know, he lost his father when he was very, very young. And my aunts, his sisters told me, you know, they told me all the stories about when they were growing up kids. And, uh, I was like, my grandfather was crazy. Um, and, and I, in retrospect again, you know, it’s like, Oh, I understand why my father was so dark, You know, because he grew up in a screwed up situation. But, but, um, <affirmative> Yeah. I, I, I think but he, you, you carry on. That’s all. I, I lost my train of thought for a second. I apologize. Um, you know, I think you do need to open up and you need to be help, but you, but I, I think that the problem, because like, I went to therapy for like, and I still go to therapy in little blocks of time.

John Rzeznik:
Um, but I think there has to be a solution focused, you have to aim towards, towards a solution. And the problem with therapy now, as I think people just use it as a crutch. And it’s like, you’re sitting there for five years and you’re like, What is the end game here? You know, the end game is, is to have a better life. And, you know, um, and I think people just kind of sit there and, and win and bitch and, and nothing gets done. It’s like, we need to find solutions. And I think a lot of the solutions, I was, I was reading an article about a guy in Laos, okay? And this guy, this is about mental health. This guy was working in the rice patties. He stepped on a landmine, lost his leg that got him a prosthetic leg. He, he was in so much pain, he could not work in the, the rice patty.

John Rzeznik:
So instead of giving him pills and, and just, you know, a check every month or whatever, um, his, his little, uh, village, they sat down and they talked with him, right? And they found out what can this guy do? And they bought him a cow and that, and then he became a dairy farmer and his purpose was restored. I think that our, as, as human beings, we need purpose. And there seems to be, now in the modern world of the future, I think there’s an epidemic of loneliness, especially among men disenfranchisement. Um, you know, um, that old, that old message of shut up and just persevere, you know, it, there’s a component of that that’s necessary, but you also need to have people to talk to. You need, you need your tribe. It’s kind of strange, you know, because you, you do, you need your tribe.

Mike Sarraille:
So I, I couldn’t agree with you more. There is, and I think covid accelerated it, in my opinion, is everyone was isolated. And especially for somebody who is maybe single in New York, living in a, uh, 400 square foot apartment, if they’re lucky. Yeah. I felt so closed off from the rest of the world. I believe in the concept of tribe. And yes, when we use that word, it’s not cultural, uh, appropriation. There were tribes in, in the, in Europe, Asia, all well beyond, uh, you know, North America. Um Right. But we all need a sense of homecoming and belonging. That’s why I love the military so much. It, it was a, it was a brotherhoodhood and a sisterhood. And you had a sense of purpose. We knew why we existed. Yeah. And it wasn’t to go war and kill people. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. That was the, the, the, the hopefully the, the, the thing we could avoid it was to, let’s say, give a presence of strength that nobody would want to go to war with us.

Mike Sarraille:
Um, Right. But you also bring up something that I think is the, and it’s not a pandemic cuz it’s not global, but I think within the United States, there’s this epidemic of victimhood that, so you talk like people just want to talk for five years about their problems. There has to be a point. Talk is good, but that has to transform into action at some point. But I think with social media today, people can just sort of stay a victim. They say, Hey, I, I’ve suffered this and I’m a victim. And what does everyone do? They applaud them. So what do they do the next week? Oh, something else happened to me and this is a shame and I’m a victim. Oh, we’re so sorry for you. And they just, so they’re getting that i, I call it negative, uh, you know, affirmation. And so they just stay in the victim right. Category.

John Rzeznik:
Yeah. Well, I think, I think in general, yeah, I think in general now that, that is kind of the thing. It’s like the, the, the, we all feel like victims sometimes, you know? And we all love to feel sorry for ourselves on occasion. It’s an indulgence. It’s, it’s an indulgence that can become very addictive, you know? And, um, you gotta be careful of it. I think I, I try to be careful of it. Um, but yeah, where is the solution? It’s like, I wanna know, it’s like, why am I, why am I sad all the time? Why do I feel like, like, you know, my wife doesn’t understand whatever, you know, it could be, I’m just making stuff up. Why is this happening? What can I do about it? And how do I get to a better place? That’s what I want to know. And I think that’s where a lot of therapy goes wrong, because it’s not, it’s not solution oriented, you know?

John Rzeznik:
And, and, and there are, there are new forms of, of therapy, you know, um, you know, cognitive behavioral therapy and things like that, that are very proactive and try to in, you know, integrate you in, you know, back into life. Now, there are, now there are things that I wanted to talk you about as being in probably the most elite intense group of military people. There is a whole psychological level that goes into that. And you’re, you know, where, where you were, you brought up an interesting point. You want to have enough strength so that nobody wants to screw with us, You know? And that’s to present that kind of strength. But at the same time, it’s a collective strength. And you are, I don’t know how you mean, you know, we’re very into self-reliance, but we are, But the interdependence between you and your fellow soldiers warriors, that’s something that’s, that’s a bond that’s so important. And I think, I think, and that’s why I always played in bands like playing music. That’s my tribe, you know? And wherever I get together with musicians there, that’s my tribe. And I know that I can talk to these people, you know, and I’m, and I am part of something and I am not alone, you

Mike Sarraille:
Know, So when you talk about it, it’s funny. And I’ve got this, so this is how I, I painted when people ask. Yeah. I mean, it doesn’t matter what you’re doing, if you have a collective group around you that all have the same sense of purpose. And I do want discuss another, another thing with that, that I’ve, I’ve come, cuz I’ve, I’ve had a lot of time to reflect on my military experience. So you guys performed at elite level, We performed that in an elite level. We were all tribes, but so is the Hell’s Angels, So is Isis, so is Al-Qaeda, those are tribes as well. Yeah. And my point where I’m going with that is just make sure that your tribe is putting good into the world. Not, not, not evil. Um, but everyone, you know, even Isis, Al-Qaeda, Hell’s Angels also offers a form of homecoming and belonging to, to a young impoverished kid who, who’s never been part of a group to, to them that’s, that’s like a drug.

Mike Sarraille:
They’re like, I’ve never had this and now I belong to this, this group, regardless if they’re a criminal organization or, or, or, or nonprofit. Um, but, uh, what I, what I did realize, I’ve come to realize this is, uh, you know, I always talk about how we, I, I led through love in the military and, and a lot of guys led the same way. Um, cuz I’ll tell you, I loved my men and women a lot more than I hated the enemy on, on the other side of the battlefield. Uh, and that’s what, what drove me, right? But, uh, people are like, Oh, then you must have just liked every single guy in your team. And I’m like, Oh, no, no, no, not at all. Like, I love them, but, uh, I didn’t like all of them. Yeah. And some of ’em didn’t like me.

Mike Sarraille:
But we could come together, put our needs aside for the good of the group, identify, Hey, what’s the objective we need to achieve this week or this day? And then come Friday, that person went their direction with their circle of friends. I went mine. And, and I mean, we remain professional and tactful, but, uh, there is a difference between love and liking. It doesn’t mean you need to, like ev it’s like your family. You, you know, you love all your family members. You may not like your, your sister as much as you like your brother, but, uh, I mean, it’s still your sister and brother. And No, I’m not saying that I love my brother more than I love my sister. I, I don’t want, I don’t wanna get a phone call after this. Yeah. Uh, you know what I mean, man.

John Rzeznik:
Yeah, I know what you mean.

Mike Sarraille:
So, um, let’s, let’s jump into the music though, because you, you went through serious obstacles. You overcame serious obstacles in, in the early part of your life. Um mm-hmm. <affirmative>, you went to college for a, a short stint. Is that, is that accurate?

John Rzeznik:
Yeah, yeah. Yeah. I flunked out.

Mike Sarraille:
So did I, my my first experience. That’s why I enlisted in the Marine Corps. But, uh, when did you, you decide, hey, college for me or these other things ain’t for me. I’m full in on the music. What was it about the, that drew you in that that, that, you know, sparked that passion dude behind, uh, music?

John Rzeznik:
Well, it was, I mean, it was really kind of the only thing I was good at, you know, um, compared to, you know, I, you know, I I wasn’t really the academic type I guess at that point, you know, I mean, I, I was more interested in, you know, meeting girls and playing music and that, and college was kind of getting in the way of all that. So when I was asked to leave the university <laugh>, it was, uh, you know, I had, I had met Robbie and we were determined that we were gonna do something. We were determined that we were gonna do something great, you know? Um, you know, and, and, and, and, you know, we still meet up every day on tour. We still meet up every day in the morning for coffee, and we discuss what’s going on. And this is 35 years later. You

Mike Sarraille:
Know. What, what does Robbie mean to you? Cause I, I, I know you’ve been married, divorced, you’re married, now you have a little girl, but it seems like Robbie is the most consistent staple of your life.

John Rzeznik:
Yeah. Um, you know, we got days where we don’t like each other, but we love each other. Um, you know, just like everybody, uh, there’s times we really don’t agree. And there’s times, you know, there are <laugh>, there are times, you know, I’ve said I pushed the right button and, you know, he jumped across a coffee table and try to kill me. You know, so not really, but, you know, he wanted, you know, you know, he wanted to, you know, punch my head in. But, uh, you know, that’s, you know, that happens with brothers all the time, you know, and he is very much my brother in, in, in a lot of ways. And it’s, it’s, uh, he has been probably the most stable person in my life. Now, Robbie grew up in a house where his dad, who’s an awesome guy, he was a, a a, he was an mp.

John Rzeznik:
And so basically his job was to beat up drunk soldiers, you know? So, so I was like, okay, a very tough disciplinarian. And, um, you know, and I think that, that, you know, Robbie is one of the guys, he won’t give up. No, no, we’re gonna keep going. We’re gonna keep going. And there’s times where I want to pack it in and just be like, I’m done. This is ridiculous. Um, and he’s like, Come on man, let’s just, let’s just ride it out. And he, he was able, he was able to get us. Like, I always think of what we’ve done, the path that we’ve taken is you gotta look for your little victories and you gotta hang onto those and use those to propel you to the next little victory. Because all success is built on failure after failure, after failure after failure. And you have to look at your, not you, I have to look at my failures as a stepping stone to the next victory, you know? And nothing, nothing’s, the only way I fail is if I quit. You know? That’s the only thing I can do. I got you. Get up, get up, You get knocked down 10 times. You get up 11 times. That’s how you win.

Mike Sarraille:
John, you were correct when you said you with regards to me, That’s everyone, dude, in my opinion.

John Rzeznik:
Yeah,

Mike Sarraille:
It is. You’ve gotta reframe the way you look at failure, it’s part of the process. It’s not, it’s not a indication that you’re not capable of achieving whatever goal you’ve set out. It’s just an indication that you may be doing it the wrong way and you’ve gotta make these, these, these, these changes. But what, I mean, we’ve all heard the, the quote from medicine, Hey, I didn’t, uh, discover the, uh, light bulb. I, I found like 10,000 ways not to, uh, to, to do it, or, Yeah. That we’re

John Rzeznik:
All, Yeah, yeah. No, I, I was actually, I was thinking of that when you, when, and you said that that’s incredible.

Mike Sarraille:
Failure is the most beautiful thing in life, I think. Um, it in, we just, well, I, you know, George Silva who helped coordinate this and that guy’s like my right hand man, a guy named Jason Belay and a guy named Brian, uh, Gordon, uh, we just finished up a book. We just finished the manuscript called The Everyday Warrior, A No Hack, Practical Approach to Life. And we talk heavily about victimhood and we talk heavily about failure, uh, because my life is one, and we said it right before this, we were like, what is the the biggest failure in your life? It’s my life. It’s like one long error chain of, uh, things. And I occasionally, for every 10 things I get wrong, I get one thing, right. Um, but yeah, people have to reframe the way they, they look at failure and it is the, it is life’s greatest manner. I agree. In my opinion. Again,

John Rzeznik:
It’s be, I mean, you know what? I agree, I agree with you. Um, sometimes it’s hard to swallow because of our ego, you know, it’s like you need ego to do things, but there’s healthy ego and there’s, and there’s, there’s destructive ego. And, and you know, you, you gotta have, you gotta have some, some ego to get up on stage in front of people or you, you know, you, and you gotta have, I’m not gonna call it ego, I’m gonna call it what it is, balls to do what you did. You know, like, like I’m dealing with, with, you know, entertainment. I mean, you, you, what you do is much was what you were doing was much more serious.

Mike Sarraille:
Wait, John, let me put it to you this way. Yeah. I would be more nervous stepping in front of a crowd. What’s the biggest crowd you’ve played?

John Rzeznik:
150,000 people. Okay,
Mike Sarraille:
First off, that’s insane. I would be more nervous. That’s stepping in front of 150,000 people than stepping onto the battlefield. It’s different for different people. It’s like public speaking. I sucked at public speaking early on, and now, now it’s become more natural. Yeah. Um, so it in the, in the vein of, of failure, let, let me ask two questions. You said music was the only thing you were good at. Was that innate or was it because you worked your freaking ass off?

John Rzeznik:
Um, I believe that it was, it, I was born with it. I was born with it because I never took any music lessons really, except for accordion. Um, I believe it was innate, but that being said, you gotta work, you gotta do the work. And I know I have this five year old little girl, and I go and I tell her all the time, because I wish somebody would’ve said this to me. And I tell her, Look at me, look at me, Lilly, you have greatness inside you, but you gotta do the work. And I know it’s heavy for a five year old, but I just want to keep instilling that in her mind, that she’s got to do the work. I know tons of people who are considered geniuses and they can’t get off their ass and get anything done. And it’s like, you, you’re a genius, but you’re nothing but potential.

John Rzeznik:
It’s like we all have potential. We have to release the kinetic energy inside ourselves. We have to take action to get shit done. Like it says here in your thing, it’s like you have to take, you have to take at some point in time, I, this is how I learned how to swim. Okay. One of my sister’s boyfriends threw me in the deep end of the pool, just threw me in the pool. And I was terrified after that because I almost drowned, you know? And, and luckily someone saved me and I was a little kid. And then, um, and then I was terrified of swimming. So what I had to do, what I had to do to get over that anxiety and that fear was, it was the first time we went out on tour and we were staying in these crap motels. And we had, wherever there was a swimming pool, I would, I would throw myself into the deep end of the pool, but I would always have my hand against the wall. So I knew that I could get out, but I had to keep exposing myself to that fear and that anxiety until it didn’t affect me. I had to desensitize myself, you know, because because someone traumatized me. So I felt as though I needed to, I felt the only path for me to get over this fear was to move through it and get to the other side of it.

Mike Sarraille:
It’s, so, again, man, it’s, it’s, I love this because you haven’t read this book and you’re basically walking through the entire book. We just wrote about risk. Now when I say the word risk, and, and let me know if you think this is accurate, most people think fear and you have to, to again. Yeah. Much like, um, failure and changing your mindset. You, you have to look at the upside of risk. No risk, no reward. Yeah. But that doesn’t mean you go and throw yourself into the deep end of the pool, like what you just said. Yeah. You take small little incremental steps of exposing yourself to more risk until you don’t need to keep your hands on the wall anymore. And that’s what it is.

John Rzeznik:
Yeah. Yeah. And now I’m, now I’m fine in a swimming pool, you know what I mean? I was like, we were in a plane crash, uh, in Sicily. We were doing, um, we were doing, um, uh, like a USO tour and we went to Bahrain and all these crazy places and uh, and we got to play rock music on an aircraft carrier in the Persian Gulf. It was pretty crazy. Awesome. Um, and then, and then we were flying back and we had to go through Sicily and the plane crashed, like legit crashed. And, and, uh, I, I had to, I was like, I’m never getting on an airplane again. And then, but I had to, I got really drunk, got on an airplane, came back to the States, and I was like, That’s it, I’m done flying. But what I had to do, because I’m like, Well, wait a minute.

John Rzeznik:
If you’re gonna do your job, you’ve gotta fly. So you better get over this fear. So I went skydiving and I, I, I had a guy strapped to my back and, and I’m like, Dude, let’s go. And what out the airplane? Screaming, freaking out. But it was cathartic in a way because when that shoot opened and we were drifting down, and it was beautiful. And if I hadn’t taken that risk, I wouldn’t have gotten that wide perspective. And it became a metaphor in my life to, to keep going, you know? And you know, it’s, and those are the kind of challenges that we have to do. If I’m afraid to talk to someone, I have to go talk to that person, you know? And they may reject me. I think that’s my biggest fear in life is rejection. But you gotta learn to swallow it and accept it as a stepping stone to success or acceptance. Yeah.

Mike Sarraille:
That, that is so beautiful, man. And first off, I would rather jump out of an airplane than fly flying scares the hell outta me, but I jump out of, uh, you know, so I don’t know if you knew this. So I, I’m a tandem master. I can take people, uh, skydiving and, and strap into the front of me. But, um, that is the weirdest thing, man, is I’m more comfortable Scott diving than I am. Yeah. And I think it’s a control issue, I think, cuz I’m not a pilot. Yeah. I’m not in control. You, you, it’s, it’s amazing. We step on the planes every day and it’s almost like pilot, I hope you’re well trained and do your job well. Uh, you really are putting your hands into to, to somebody else’s life. But, um, it’s also a very regulated in industry. Uh, dude, that is my biggest fear of plane crash. That, that’s insane. Every, everyone walk away.

John Rzeznik:
Everyone walked away. But was crazy was the guy had to keep, I’ll, I’ll do this really quick cuz there’s more important things the guy had to circle around till he was pretty much outta gas, you know, out of fuel. And, um, and so I had a lot of time to think about what I was gonna do. Like, okay, we’re going down and we had time to think about it. So I’m like, okay, it’s the fire, not the crash that kills most people. So it’s like I’m putting a leather jacket over my head and like, okay, so the leather jacket’s gonna protect my face from the fire and I’m gonna like get outta the, And it was just, it was chaos. It was, it was chaos and it was nuts. And, and you know, it’s, it’s a bit of trauma, you know, in a way. I think this is something that I, I’m just gonna say that I think, like I have, I’ve been to a few therapists in my life and over the past few years, you know, you have to tell your story to the therapist.

John Rzeznik:
Boom. Instantly they diagnosed me with PTSD and I’m like, Hold on, hold on. Like, like I think Thatt, uh, PTSD in, you know, the civilian population, it’s a little bit overdiagnosed I think because I’m like, I’m like, well, maybe I do have p PTSD because, you know, I don’t know. But I’ve seen people who have real PTSD and my little annoyances and neurosis don’t stack up to what that really is. I just have annoying, I’m just annoying and neurotic at times, you know? And these are, these are challenges that the universe is putting in front of me to, to overcome, to get to the next place.

Mike Sarraille:
I will say that post-traumatic stress can lead to growth, though post traumatic growth.

John Rzeznik:
I think we can, but, but what is going on inside my mind doesn’t even qualify when you, when you’ve seen someone who has been through battles and who, who who has really been their life has been at risk and, and, and

Mike Sarraille:
It’s someone who was, you know, sexually or emotionally abused as as a child. Yeah. That, that is serious trauma. Um, but with the right help, they can absolutely turn that into, uh, to growth. You did say it earlier, man. And I believe, you know, just cuz somebody’s a qualified shrink or psychologist does not mean they’re good at what they do. It’s like musicians, they’re great musicians and then there are musicians that are not that good. It depends on the person. And, and you said it, is that person moving you towards a solution? I don’t think all shrinks in, uh, psychologists, uh, do that.

John Rzeznik:
No, no. I’ve met, uh, well I lived in Los Angeles for a long time, so there’s no shortage of bizarre characters. And um, you know, and I had, I had a, I had a therapist I was smoking pot with and, and like going over to his house and I’m just like, well, what is the end game here? And I just felt like, well you just want my 200 bucks an hour to like hang out. It’s like, this is not healthy. This is a bad relationship. So, you know, there, you know, and to, and the thing is, when, when you’re in a vulnerable position, there’s no shortage of people who are gonna try to take advantage of that. And that’s why I think it’s, it’s the, you know, people who really are suffering with PTSD and things like that, they really need to be cared for by people that can be trusted. You know, because, and I found that too in the, in the, in the uh, recovery community. Um, there are a lot of people trying to make a buck off, off of my disease or my, my illness or whatever you wanna call it. And, and that’s why I’ve been very wary of where I go in my sobriety to, to get help, to find my community, to help find my tribe of drunks that I can, that we can help each other through this and stay sober. Because there’s people who wanna exploit you.

Mike Sarraille:
Iron sharpens iron, so is one man sharpens another. You definitely have to find the right group that wants to heal and move forward. Or if not, misery loves company and they just wanna keep you down with themselves. Cause they don’t wanna put the work in but you Exactly,

John Rzeznik:
John. Exactly.

Mike Sarraille:
You hit some dark times in terms of substance abuse.

John Rzeznik:
Yeah.

Mike Sarraille:
Did you ever pinpoint through your healing process, this is why I was using this to mask this or this is why I became dependent on it. Was it the stress of the job? Was it the environment? What, what did, what, what conclusions did you come to?

John Rzeznik:
Um, I was afraid of everything. Everything. Even though, even though I would get up and face it every day, I was terrified of everything, you know? And, you know, and, and just, just plagued with self doubt and worry. And, and I couldn’t deal with it. And, and the fact that I had grown up in really in, in, in a pretty crazy environment, it was pretty nuts. My dad’s an alcoholic and life at home was pretty crazy sometimes. And, um, you know, and I truly believe if he had, if he had gotten the right help, he would still be here. Um, but anyway, on that aside, but, um, it caused me a lot, a lot of fear that I couldn’t control. And the only, and I’ll tell you why people use alcohol and drugs cuz they work <laugh> until they don’t. Until they don’t. And then somebody said this to me and I thought it was really brilliant. They’re like, the man takes the drink, the drink takes the drink, the drink takes the man. And yeah, it was like the saddest time in my life, the saddest time in my life was wanting, was being drunk as hell and, and on drugs and just wanting so desperately to be clean and not being able to do it. And I truly believe that the universe helped me and some people that, that

Mike Sarraille:
Care about me. Was it, was it you that came to the conclusion that you needed help or was it those close to you that say, Hey John, we’ve, we’ve, this, this has gotta stop? Or Both? Yeah.

John Rzeznik:
Well, I mean, I’m a real addict because when they tried to do the intervention thing on me, I laughed. I was like, I was like, I was sitting on my sofa in my underwear just laughing. I’m like, I love you guys, but this is bullshit and I’m not doing it. I tell you what, I made a deal just to get ’em outta my house just to get everybody that loved me outta my house. I was like, I’ll go to rehab, but I’m gonna stay drunk for the next three days. Okay, Is that a deal? That’s a deal. Cool. Get outta my house, I’m gonna get loaded. And um, and then I did, and then I went to rehab and it didn’t work. I had to go to rehab five times, you know, before I committed to it, you know, And, and then I had to spend three months there.

John Rzeznik:
I wish I could have spent six, but, but I spent three. And what I learned though is nothing, nothing is gonna make me quit until I decide I’m gonna do it. And, and I, when I’m talking to another alcoholic, I go, you know, dude, I know you’re trying, but this is not gonna work unless it’s for you. It’s kind of like a selfish process in a way. But if your wife’s bitching at you or, or your family’s bitching at you or you’re in trouble at work, consequences mean nothing to an addict. They mean nothing. They just, they just spark that defiance in you. I got defiant toward the people who loved me and were trying to help me. Cuz it’s like, screw you. This is not your life. This is my life. No matter how distorted and crazy it is, it’s just like, it’s my life and I’ll kill myself if I want to now get out, you know? Woo gives me the creeps thinking about it. I

Mike Sarraille:
I can only imagine how hard that is to ditch something that becomes everything to you. You’re, you’re, you’re, you’re out. Does the draw of alcohol

John Rzeznik:
Yeah.

Mike Sarraille:
Ever still pull you in?

John Rzeznik:
Um, it took a long time for me, but here’s the deal. Going back to our initial conversation about desensitizing yourself to things. It’s like my manager with all good intentions, my manager, the other guys in my band, they tried to sort of, um, set up a scenario where I could function and produce in a very controlled environment. Now they were trying to hide me away from the temptations, sober companions, a sober tour manager, you know, blah, blah, blah, all this nonsense, you know, and I, some people need that. I can only speak for myself. It made me more defiant. It made me want to drink more. It made me want to take more drugs. Like I am not the identified, I became the identified patient, which leads to victimhood in a way. So I had to, Now it took a while because I am an addict and I, you know, and I always will be, but when it finally got to a point, we were all out at dinner one night and one of the guys in the band was texting one of the other guys in the band, Where are we gonna go after John leaves?

John Rzeznik:
Because they all wanted to go out to the bar and drink. So in that moment what I did was I ordered wine for the whole table and I’m like, This is not your problem. This is my problem. Let me deal with it. You know, and that, that may not work for other people. But that’s what worked for me because, and, and when I felt uncomfortable, I got up and left and I went back to my room and I called another alcoholic and said, Dude, I was just at dinner, everybody was drinking wine, got a little crazy and slowly it got better. I keep liquor in my house. I am always the bartender. I love making drinks. Being a bartender is my true passion in life cuz it was the greatest job I ever had, better than being in a rock band. I swear to God cuz because I was shy. I was a shy young man. So I had, I had a reason to talk to every pretty girl in the bar. I left. I i I left my job every night with a, with a pretty girl and a pocket full of cash. Being a bartender is the greatest job. I highly recommend it to anybody.

Mike Sarraille:
Well, we know you had no issue, uh, with, uh, women, uh, pulling pretty women in your life. That that must have been another innate skill you have. No, I’m, uh, secretly jealous of it. Thank

John Rzeznik:
God for, thank God for women. No, thank God for women. Cuz like I, I’ve been very lucky and, and, and women have always been, uh, a big source of strength and, and, and, and, uh, trouble <laugh>. But, but, but, uh, like most beautiful things in life, I mean, the women in my life have always been strong and, and compassionate. And that, that’s what I look for in a woman is someone who’s, who’s strong, compassionate, and can be a partner, you know? Um, you know, women who have their own identity. I, I’m not afraid of strong women. That’s what I up

Mike Sarraille:
Came in the the good with the bad and, uh, couldn’t agree with you more. Um, you know, I know you spoke about your wife prior to, uh, to us hit and record here, but you know, I’ve, I found a woman who was very strong-willed, but will break down and cry when she knows I’m, uh, I’m in pain. And that, that right there, I know means the world to me. But John, before we get to our, our final questions, and one, I can’t thank you enough for your time, um, let’s talk a little bit about this album. Why You, you are, I mean, four decades of impact on the world through your music. And you talk about legacy, you know, there’s, there’s a time when John re you know, Resnik will no longer be here, but your music will remain. And that’s insane to think about that, but

John Rzeznik:
I

Mike Sarraille:
Hope so. What is it about this album that you and, uh, you know, Robbie are so passionate about and so excited to, to release into the world?

John Rzeznik:
Um, I think that covid and, and all the civil unrest and, and, and the struggles for, you know, whatever we’re struggling towards, where we’re, what are we creeping towards? I believe that there is, um, a positive end to this story. But, you know, interesting times are not always good times. And, um, we are being tested on so many levels as individuals, as, as, as Americans, as as human beings. Um, and when you, and then you, and then you put Covid on top of it and you’re trapped in the house and you have a lot of time to think and introspection and that, and, and this, this album is sort of a, uh, it’s kind of a reflection on like, just being a human being during this insane time in history, you know? And, and you know, I mean, there’s a little satire on the album because the, I I, I’m always amazed by the absurdity of celebrity in the year 2022, you know, and probably cuz of my age, but, but, uh, some of it I’m just like, what?

John Rzeznik:
That’s what that song Yeah, I Like You is about, because it’s like, this is, this is what celebrity is now. Wow. 10,000 people like me. Oh, wait a minute. What happens when 2000 people like me? What happens when more people don’t like me than like me? It’s like you’re, you know why they call it self-esteem? Because it comes from yourself. It’s not, you cannot get caught up in other people’s opinions of you. It’s like, my, my favorite alcoholic in the world said this to me. Your opinion of me is none of my business. And it’s like, I love that man.

Mike Sarraille:
Oh, my wife says the, uh, the same thing, man, I am taking notes. That, that right there, interesting times are not always good times that I think you just named this podcast, man, that, uh, or this, this episode that that is so true. But you have to believe as human being, we are moving towards, uh, like you said, a beautiful outcome. But I, I, I think there, I think we have, uh, some darker days ahead of us than than son of your days. But, but we’ll eventually, uh, get there. We always seem to figure it out.

John Rzeznik:
But you know what, you know what, I just wanted to say this. It’s, it’s something small. It’s very, very small and a lot of people would consider it trivial. But, but when I know that people are so divided along all kinds of lines in this country and in the world too right now, But one of the things that I have been noticing this summer, because I’ve been gone for three years, I’ve been toured in three years. People leave their differences at the door and we need to find common ground, something as stupid as a few songs, This guy, that girl, these, all these people from every walk of life. They put their differences aside and they come into the arena and find some common ground. We need to create a aven diagram in this society where we can all look at that little space where the two circles join, let’s work within here and work, then we’ll work our way out because we need to, we need to love each other and be respectful of our differences. You,

Mike Sarraille:
You said, uh, the word empathy, uh, earlier in the podcast and, and empathy is almost become like the, uh, the new hot buzzword, but people are not displaying empathy. Empathy means you listen to people’s perspectives and their experiences. No, because they’re entitled to them because their life experiences are different than yours. Yeah. And try to still find that commonality with people. We, we, we love to, to put buzz words out there, but yet we don’t follow them through behavior or action. What, tell me about the tour man. Where, what are, what are some of the highlights of the, uh, the tour which you guys have already started, correct?

John Rzeznik:
Yeah, Yeah. Um, well, uh, we got to play at Red Rocks up in Colorado.

Mike Sarraille:
Oh, I, I went to Colorado for school. Love the Red Rocks Band. Had I known you guys were playing there, we would’ve come out. My wife and I.

John Rzeznik:
Oh, well, you know, you are always welcome when we come back, you know, you know, um, yeah. You know, I mean, it’s just great to be able to connect with our audience again, you know, because that, that, like, they’re a tribe too. Like there are these, uh, fans of our band who they get together, they meet from all over the country, and they get together and they come to a few shows together and they’ve, they’ve had these friendships that developed and, and, and I’m like, that’s so cool that they bonded over something. And then, and you know it, and then you see their faces. You start to recognize faces in the crowd and, and they become an extension of your tribe.

Mike Sarraille:
When, when, when, uh, when does the tour go till,

John Rzeznik:
You know, um, this tour, this leg of the tour goes until the 24th of September. And, um, and then we’re picking up in the fall, we’re gonna do, uh, a theater run in smaller cities across America. And then, um, I don’t know, then I think we’re gonna go to South America,

Mike Sarraille:
Um, Australia, if people wanna find the dates in locations where, where to go is at Google. Google dolls.com. Uh, Google,

John Rzeznik:
Yeah. Google dolls.com Okay. Would probably

Mike Sarraille:
Be the best place. My wife and I will go take a look at that and hopefully we will find a way to make one of the, uh, the shows. Hey dude, I’ve always wondered this. Never, never. I equate doing tours for you guys to like, tours in the military. Are you guys freaking more out by the end of the door?

John Rzeznik:
Um, yeah, it’s broken sleep on a bus, um, you know, inconsistent food, uh, you know, just things like that. It’s like really trying to, and I’m getting older, so it’s kind of like, Oh man, just gimme that bed. But, um, it’s, it’s, it’s exhausting. But, but it is, it is fun, you know? And I mean, and it does take discipline and it’s like, I gotta get up. I’ve gotta go to the gym every day. You know? I guess that’s part of being everyday warrior. You got to do the things you got to do. And it’s like, you know what you do not only for yourself, but you have to keep other people in mind. It’s like you were saying, which is really brilliant. It’s like if you are living your life in service, not only to your country, but to the people who surround you and support you, you know? And I, you know, and I look at the guy who’s hanging the steel above my head every night and I thank that guy because if that, if, if I don’t support him and say thank you and express my appreciation, you know, it’s like, you know, what he does is very important cuz that shit could fall on my head and kill me. But he’s doing a great job. So how can I support you? You know, because you

Mike Sarraille:
Are supporting you. I don’t care if you are a professional athlete that has made it in, in an individual sport, like let’s say singles tennis. You are there because people have enabled and supported and coached and mentored you. Uh, yes, you probably have innate talent, but everywhere I’ve been, all my success, the product who I am has always been coaches and mens,

John Rzeznik:
I, I just find it so fascinating to talk to you because it’s like, and I can’t wait to read your book. Um, cuz it it sounds like, like a, like a tonic, like it sounds like, Yeah, we all it sounds like a very loving kick in the ass <laugh>. Well,

Mike Sarraille:
And it is. So, you know, one thing people rarely know about me is I come from San Francisco, which is, I, it was a great place, eighties, nineties. I, right now, they, they have their problems. They will find a way back. Hopefully. I, I have to believe that. But it was one of the most accepting places to grow up, you know, eighties, nineties, if you said you were gay, nobody cared. Like, all right man, come here, third arm. Right on, man. And, and there, there are different elements across the, uh, the nation, different environments that, that are not as accepting. Um, so the one thing with this book is I wanted to make it very inclusive of, it doesn’t matter who you are, sex, gender, sexual orientation, uh, it applies to everyone. And hopefully we, we’ve achieved that. But John, we, we end this with a series of what we call the hard questions, man. And we, we did send you to prep. So first one is, biggest regret of your life in here. We do not accept. I have no regrets in my life. Everyone has the regrets.

John Rzeznik:
The biggest regret in my life, and I thought about this, I was, I was in the gym yesterday and I was thinking like the biggest regret in my life and I’m just like, Wow, there are a lot, you know, small ones and big ones, you know, but, but, um, you know, wow, I, I regret it can’t be something like, Oh, regret, I didn’t talk to that really beautiful woman 30 years ago, whatever. It’s, that’s bullshit. My biggest regret is that I, I wrote an album and an executive at the record company refused to accept it, but he couldn’t tell me why, you know? And I, and I let him get in my head. I let him get in my head and it caused me to spiral down. I let some, I let myself spiral down because of someone else’s opinion of me. Now this is someone’s opinion who, if they didn’t like the record, it wasn’t coming out.

John Rzeznik:
This guy was theoretically in that circumstance, my boss. But I, and I just finally, I got to a point where I was just, I had to, for my own survival, go put the record out or drop me cuz I can’t live like this anymore. Like I can’t. And you’ve gotta have the balls to walk away from any situation. If it’s not right, oh my God, I’m gonna lose my fame, I’m gonna lose my status. I’m not gonna be cool and important anymore. Screw that. It’s ruining my life thinking about what this person’s opinion of me is. It’s, and it’s stalling me out. And it gave me writer’s block and all this. And, and then once again, it was just, it felt so good to just go, I’m done. If, if, if, if you don’t see it, okay, I gotta walk away that my biggest regret was stalling my creativity out. Because you have to trust your instincts as well as accepting advice. You need to balance it all out. And I didn’t No, no,

Mike Sarraille:
That, that is a great story. And I definitely put that in the bucket of moral courage. That took a lot of moral courage to do that. And hold your head high moral courage is, uh, there’s a deficit in this world. Physical courage. That’s easy, dude. That, that’s really easy. Uh, biggest or hardest decision you’ve ever had to make? Yeah,

John Rzeznik:
Probably ending my first marriage. That was, that was probably the hardest decision I had ever had to make. You know, because, because of circumstances surrounding our relationship, it, it, the, the situation just became untenable and, and it was like, we were not, we were growing apart and we were doing, we weren’t doing good for each other anymore. So it was,

Mike Sarraille:
But Nancy,

John Rzeznik:
That I

Mike Sarraille:
Walk away. Do you think timing was a factor in that just timing in life where you guys were at could have been a factor?

John Rzeznik:
I, I think, yeah, I think I, I think our, our lives were just, just going in different directions, but we were getting further and further apart and there was always a great still the love, there was a lot of love and we stayed friends for a long time, um, after that. Um, but we just weren’t good for each other anymore. So I, I need somebody who’s gonna be good for me and

Mike Sarraille:
I need to up in that boat. Um, okay, next one is, what are those like one to three tenants? Those, those keys for success for you that you, you’ve tried to live your life by? And usually if you follow them with discipline, uh, you know, usually lead to good outcomes.

John Rzeznik:
Try to keep your word. I don’t always, I, I, you can’t always keep your word, but you do your best to keep your promises and keep your word, um, you know, and honor your commitments. Um, keep your ego in check. You know, like in my, in my, in my situation, it’s like if my ego gets involved in the process of writing a song, then it’s gonna turn out to be crap. You know? You gotta do what’s best for the song anyway. Um, you know, and, and, and when you are going to fails, but you just keep going.

Mike Sarraille:
Those are powerful, man. This really is, uh, keep your word. You know, Samma Hagar said something very similar to, to, to us in his interview. He, he called it Don’t fuck anyone or Don’t try to fuck anyone. He said, Try, try to follow your word. He said, Sometimes things happen where, uh, someone gets, as he said, fucked, but, uh, it was never his intent.

John Rzeznik:
Yeah, no, I, I, I agree with that wholeheartedly. And I love him. I love Sam Hager. Like, I’ve never met someone who’s got so much joy

Mike Sarraille:
And I’m say, this dude guy for his age, he looks freaking good. Like he figured it outing great.

John Rzeznik:
He looks amazing, and he’s still drinks tequila. Wait,

Mike Sarraille:
Wait, you do that guy. He has written books. That guy has the, uh, the secret sauce to, uh, to life. I’m, uh, I’m convinced. All right, last question, man. When all said and done, and your time has come, how are you gonna know you lived a life of impact? Or what would you have wanted your legacy to be?

John Rzeznik:
I like, well, I think we, we, we hit on, on this before. I, I just hope that I left my little corner of the world just a little bit better than I found it, you know? And, and, um, and I hope that my daughter respects me. You know, that’s mostly it. I hope my daughter loves me and respects me in my

Mike Sarraille:
Last and brother, I have no doubt that she will, if you continue to give her advice like that is have your dream, but you gotta work for it. Um, well, John, dude, um, I’ve loved this conversation, man. I, and I mean that with all authenticity whatsoever, man, I wish we had three or four hours, uh, sitting down in person cuz we could keep going. And there’s a lot I can learn from you, man. And there’s a lot that people will learn from your advice in this

John Rzeznik:
Podcast’s a lot. We learn from each other. There’s a lot we can learn from each other that, that, you know, I’m, I, you know, I

Mike Sarraille:
Likewise respect likewise and, uh, much respect. You know, I do remember, and, and I know it’s your most iconic song, uh, Iris, but we were sitting on a h site in the Marines. I was a recon Marine in, in my initial days in the military, and we were stuck on a desert hill for two weeks overlooking the vastness of the desert. And, uh, your song probably came on more times, uh, and I was joking with one of my old recon buddies, is we, we had a little, uh, you know, radio receiver with a little speaker and, uh, he’s like, Dude, I remember that song coming on, uh, way too often. But, uh, we, I attached that memory as I said earlier, Wow. To sitting in, uh, desert, uh, uh, God, I’m forgetting. It’s the desert of California, man. So you’ve had impact and uh, I can, I’m gonna go look@googledolls.com and, and find the dates, man. Well, hopefully we can join you for one of your shows. John, I wish you a safe travel on the rest of the tour, man, and thank you for your time. No,

John Rzeznik:
Thank you brother.

Mike Sarraille:
And for all those thank you for listening. Uh, again, like I said, go to google dolls.com, check out the dates, go to a show. Uh, I’m looking forward to hearing this, uh, this new album. And guys, thank you for joining The Everyday Warrior. Thanks for joining us on another episode of the Men’s Journal Everyday Warrior podcast. Hey, whatever platform you utilize to listen to our podcast, please, please leave a review. We read all of ’em, That’s how we get better. And lastly, again, thank you to our sponsor, Pendleton Whiskey. We’ve got your six. Cheers.

Episode 29

Men’s Journal Everyday Warrior Podcast Episode 29: Zak Williams
Men’s Journal’s Everyday Warrior With Mike Sarraille is a podcast that inspires individuals to live more fulfilling lives by having conversations with
Play
Flip podcast card

Episode 30

Men’s Journal Everyday Warrior Podcast Episode 30: Jose Vitor Leme
In episode 30 of the Men’s Journal Everyday Warrior Podcast, we spoke to Jose Vitor Leme, a Brazilian professional rodeo cowboy and bull rider.
Play
Flip podcast card

Episode 31

Men’s Journal Everyday Warrior Podcast Episode 31: Adrian Brannan
In episode 31 of the Men’s Journal Everyday Warrior Podcast, we spoke to singer and songwriter Adrian Brannan.
Play
Flip podcast card

Episode 32

Men’s Journal Everyday Warrior Podcast Episode 32: Ezekiel Mitchell
In episode 32 of the Men’s Journal Everyday Warrior Podcast, we spoke to professional bull rider Ezekiel Mitchell.
Play
Flip podcast card

Episode 33

Men’s Journal Everyday Warrior Podcast Episode 33: Coach J. B. Bickerstaff
Men’s Journal’s Everyday Warrior With Mike Sarraille is a podcast that inspires individuals to live more fulfilling lives by having conversations with
Play
Flip podcast card