LOS ANGELES Win, lose or draw, Goo Goo Dolls frontman Johnny Rzeznik says he's treating himself right for his band's nomination in this year's Grammy Awards.
As buckets of rain soaked through the slickers and ponchos of starry-eyed fans on nearby bleachers, Rzeznik stopped on the red carpet on his way into Wednesday's gala at L.A.'s cavernous Staples Center to talk about rewards and consolation prizes.
No matter what happens, he said, he planned long ago to see a new truck in his future.
"If I was going to lose, I was going to trade in my old car and buy myself a [Toyota] 4Runner to console myself," said Rzeznik, whose band's "Black Balloon" (RealAudio excerpt) is vying against songs by odds-on favorite Santana, as well tracks by Garbage, Hole and the Red Hot Chili Peppers, in the Best Rock Performance by a Duo or Group With Vocal category.
"And then I decided if I win, I was gonna buy a 4Runner to celebrate," he said. But, the poster-boy singer and guitarist explained, "Instead of waiting, I just decided to do it. So I got myself a 4Runner," Rzeznik said.
While the stars arriving at the 42nd Annual Grammys found shelter from the storm in the canopy that covered the red carpet, hundreds of fans huddled nearby under a rainbow of colored umbrellas.
Blues singer Susan Tedeschi walked in with humble thoughts. She's up for Best New Artist, alongside teen pop's Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera, rock-rapper Kid Rock and soul singer Macy Gray.
"Goodness, no!" Tedeschi said when asked if she had extravagant celebration plans should she be tapped as the winner.
"I'm a blues artist," she added. "Not until I sell a million records!"
Former Genesis singer and drummer Phil Collins learned in a preshow ceremony that he scored a golden phonograph in the Best Soundtrack category for the "Tarzan" album.
He planned to celebrate by looking hopefully toward next month's Academy Awards ceremony, in which the "Tarzan" track "You'll Be in My Heart" (RealAudio excerpt) is nominated for Best Original Song. The bald singer said he hoped the soundtrack work and Grammy win would mark a new upward cycle in his career.
"I'm feeling grateful," Collins said. "There's an element of luck in all of this."
Jazz journeyman Poncho Sanchez, on the other hand, said he'd grown tired of waiting for his turn in the spotlight. The multi-instrumentalist and bandleader will take home the Best Latin Jazz Performance Grammy for his Latin Soul album.
"This is the first one," he said of the award. "I've been nominated four times. I've got 19 CDs out. It's about time."