The mention of the band Green Day among any modern music fan will be accompanied with such hate. Such negative reactions might include a comparison of Green Day to the likes of Justin Bieber. The label they most people give Green Day is the “Kings of Selling Out.” With this past year being one of the biggest years for the band, does Green Day fit the bill of a sellout punk band? Have they traded their punk rock roots for the glamour of the pop music world? Well, the only proper way to examine the accusations against the band is to see if there is truth behind them. Has Green Day sold out? Time to find the truth!
Now there are several thousands reasons why people say that Green Day sold out, I’m only going to address just a list that I found on the internet.
Reason # 1: Green Day Sold Out When They Toured With blink 182
I see this as more of a complaint against blink 182. Both Green Day and blink are similar bands with some differences. The bands both started off with punk rock roots around the same time period: Green Day (1987) blink (1992). Both Green Day and blink breakthrough commercially within three years of each other: Green Day released Dookie in 1996 and blink 182 dropped Enema Of State in 1999. In 2002, Green Day was diving into this punk rock semi-acoustic direction with their sound. Around the same time, blink perfected their classic pop-punk sound. while the bands were at different points in their career when they toured together, that gives no reason to call Green Day sellouts.
Reason #2: Green Day Sold Out When They Created American Idiot: The Musical
For this to be a sell out move, most people might consider this move either not “punk rock” or just another way that Green Day could score a good bit of money off of this venture. First off, taking a punk rock concept album and putting it into a musical form is not betraying their musical morale center. If they took American Idiot and made a perfume line based on it, that would be a different story. Green Day made a firecracker of an album with American Idiot and they simply just wanted to see their album become more of a living breathing story that people witness on a different platform. Most Broadway shows take at least one year of steady performances to break even with costs.With that in mind, Green Day could not have been in it for the money. Instead, they were in it for expanding their album American Idiot into a different art form. I would argue that American Idiot: The Musical was essentially a very punk rock move. However, I’ll explain what I mean by that at the end of this entry.
Reason #3: Green Day Sold Out When They Did A Commercial For Rhapsody
So a band sells out when they films commercials for a music service? So I guess Lamb of God, Jay Z, The Temper Trap, and Rob Thomas have sold out because they are all featured in commercials for Rhapsody. Now I could see some truth in this claim if this was a shampoo commercial Regardless of what people might grieve over, the fact remains that Green Day is one of the world biggest bands and their image attracts companies like Rhapsody to use them in commercials. Did this commercial affect integrity of Green Day’s music? No, they continued being a pop punk band.
Reason #4: Green Day Sold Out When Billie Joe Started Wearing Mascara
In comparison to the previous reasons, this is perhaps they most irrational attempt to label Green Day being a sellout band. So with that in mind, I am not going waste my time with examine the context of this reason. Instead let me show you some lyrics from the Green Day song “King For A Day”, “My daddy threw me in therapy, He thinks I’m not a real man, who put the drag in the drag queen. Don’t knock it until you tried it.”.
I can address all the reasons why people think Green Day has sold out. Truth of the matter is that this entry would never end. The only major change I see in Green Day’s music that I would consider to be a sellout move is the change in the musical quality between their sophomore and third LPs Kerplunk and Dookie. However, I find it rare that people use that change in music as a sellout move. People say that Green Day is no longer punk. Well the question lies: What is punk? Well, I believe this following story of Billie Joe’s to be the answer to that question: “A guy walks up to me and asks, ‘What’s Punk?’. So I kick over a garbage can and say, ‘That’s punk!”. So he kicks over the garbage can and says, ‘That’s Punk?’, and I say, ‘No, that’s trendy!’”.
VERDICT: No Green Day Did Not Sell Out
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