by Robert Wilkinson
Today we send up a Happy Solar Return and Birthday to musical power house Billie Joe Armstrong, frontman for Green Day. A band that can rally millions, his is the voice that's challenged authoritarian and brain-dead thinking for years. Today we have videos.
As I’ve written before, in case you've been on a trip to Sirius or Alpha Centauri, Green Day blasted their way to national influence in the so-called "grunge" alternative rock movement of the mid-1980s. The band originated in Berserkeley and soon blazed to global popularity through its uncompromising brand of neo-punk thrash rock that forced everyone to take note of what was happening. A major musical force and social conscience in our world, for your listening pleasure here are Billie Joe Armstrong (February 17, 1972), Taurus Mike Dirnt (May 4, 1972), and Sagittarian Tre Cool (December 9, 1972) (with a shout-out to Scorpio Jason White (November 11, 1973))!
Today features early, middle, and recent performances, so enjoy the many faces of Oaksterdam native Billie Joe Armstrong! We begin today's party with a bowl full of their classic tunes, all great videos of Green Day live. Unfortunately some require a bit of buffering time before hitting play, but hang in there. It's worth the wait!
Let's begin with a video for a cause that really matters. Here's a great performance for "Instant Karma: the Campaign to Save Darfur," Amnesty International's effort to bust genocidal war criminals. A powerful video of Green Day doing the John Lennon classic Working Class Hero offering a chilling indictment of genocide! Here's their performance of "Working Class Hero" on American Idol that was said to "stun America." We can only wish that Amerika would wake up and remember.....
Here's one of their best! From 2009 in England, complete with the crowd singing every single line, "Good Riddance (the Time of your Life)." From Japan, another great live performance of "Good Riddance (the Time of your Life)”
Recent material features some magnificent live performances. We now groove into my favorite Green Day song, "Holiday." Written as an in-your-face challenge to the Bush War Criminal administration, Billie Joe makes it clear that "This song is not anti-American. It's anti-WAR!"
This version is magnificent. From the Billboard Awards ceremony, "Holiday."
From the 2005 “Bullet in a Bible” tour in England, I found a bunch of their songs, which I’ve posted in the same order as the playlist! We begin with the title song from the album of the same name, here's a live performance of ”American Idiot.”
Billie Joe’s rousing the rabble! Another stunning performance of "Holiday.”
Here’s the full two hour show! Green Day 2005 “Bullet in a Bible” UK concert
We now leave that concert for more live performances!
Here’s a great 10 minute performance in Japan of "Jesus of Suburbia."From Berlin, Green Day live performing “Minority” and “We Are The Champions”
Here’s the entire 53 minute show of Green Day at the Bizarre Festival 2001
Here’s the entire 55 minute show of Green Day MTV Live in Italy 2005
Here’s U2 and Green Day in N’awlins in 2006 doing a great performance of "Wake Me Up When September Ends” and “The Saints Are Coming," finished with "Beautiful Day.”
An interesting Live Audio 1990 performance that features fragments of several early songs set to still photos.
And if you still want more, here's the official Green Day You Tube channel where I'm sure you can get dialed in to what's up with this amazing group.
Happy 41, Billie Joe. Keep writing, keep rocking, and keep the flame burning bright!
© Copyright 2013 Robert Wilkinson