Politics in the Music of Green Day

1698 Words7 Pages
Politics in Music

Every day we live our lives exercising the right of freedom of expression. In our country, everyone is entitled to his/her own opinions and are allowed to express those opinions freely and openly except in different circumstances where the state determines when (if) a limitation of this freedom is necessary. What happens when this threshold is breached? How has the freedom of expression affected the music industry? How has this all affected society?

Green Day is punk rock musical trio from California that features Billie Joe Armstrong on guitar and lead vocals, Mike Dirnt on bass guitar and backing vocals, and Tré Cool on the drums. Green Day is widely credited, along with fellow California bands The Offspring and Rancid, with reviving mainstream interest in and popularizing punk rock in the United States during the mid 1990s. The band has sold over 30 million albums in the United States, and over 63.5 million records worldwide, “making them the most successful punk band of all time” (Bruen, par. 4). Green Day currently has three Grammy Awards under their belt including Best Alternative Album for Dookie, Best Rock Album for American Idiot, and Record of the Year for their single “Boulevard of Broken Dreams.” They are also second to the Red Hot Chili Peppers for the most number-ones on Billboard’s Modern Rock Tracks with eight, and most collective weeks at number one on the Modern Rock Tracks with 39.

“American Idiot is a 57 minute politically charged epic depicting a character named Jesus of Suburbia as he suffers through the decline and fall of the American Dream” (Moss, par. 2). The album cover for American Idiot, which is pictured above, illustrates a transparent hand snatching a blood-dripping gr...

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