Green Day’s American Idiot is one of my top five favorite albums of all time, so of course I had to read Green Day: American Idiots & The New Punk Explosion by Ben Myers.
The book is like a documentary in written form. It combines information with dialogue to tell the story of the band’s rise from its humble beginnings to mega-stardom in the American Idiot era.
The Green Day story is very blunt: three school friends grow up together in a cluster of small blue-collar Californian towns, form a band … and sell over 50 million albums. Except it wasn’t that simple. Self-confessed latch-key kids, theirs was far from an easy ride.
Inspired by both the energy of British punk bands like the Sex Pistols and Buzzcocks and cult American bands such as Dead Kennedys and Husker Du, Green Day formed in 1989. The band gigged relentlessly across the US, quickly selling out every underground club that booked them, and their 1994 major label debut Dookie was a 10-million-selling worldwide hit album that seized the zeitgeist while rock music was still reeling from the death of Nirvana’s Kurt Cobain. They toured the world, headlined all the big festivals, won countless awards and released multi-million selling albums.
In 2004 Green Day reached a career pinnacle with the concept album American Idiot, a sophisticated commentary on modern life–not least dissatisfaction with their president and America’s continued cultural and economic imperialism. The No. 1 success of the Grammy-winning album extended Green Day’s fan base even further–from pre-teen kids to previously skeptical critics.
(Source: The Publisher)
Are you a Green Day fan? Then you’ll love it.
Have you read Green Day: American Idiots & The New Punk Explosion? What did you think of it?
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