Green Day’s Billie Joe Armstrong, who doesn’t look or act any older since releasing Dookie in 1994, expected a lot from his audience the other night. He demanded early on:

“Stand up! This isn’t a tea party; this is rock and roll!”

The entire audience agreed; everyone to the very top row was standing up for the entire concert.

Also he chastised a fan for taking a video, “When you are looking at me through your phone, you are not seeing me,” he said. So…I don’t have any videos or photos to show you because I was embracing the experience and giving them my full attention for the two and a half hours they rocked the State Farm Center!

My love for Green Day and their live performance can be summed up by paying tribute to three of their albums:


Being a “melodramatic fool” myself, I dug out my actual 20+ year old Dookie CD to obsess over it once again before heading off to see Green Day live.

This album was revolutionary for me. I was coming off my hair-band fan era, and Dookie was exactly what I needed at the time! I must have heard some of these songs 100s of times in my college years. When I heard them play “When I Come Around,” I had an overwhelming sense of: This song just feels like college!!

“No time to search the world around…Cause you know where I’ll be found, When I come around…”

I still love the feel of Dookie. Back then I didn’t study the lyrics too much. Now I see there was more there than I thought (some real life issues and more characterization than I originally heard) but this album is as fun to me now as it was 20+ years ago.

American Idiot

They played several hits off their most popular rock-opera album American Idiot. I don’t remember being as obsessed with this album as Dookie, but I’m not sure why because everyone else was! My husband remembers listening to it incessantly in his truck, and even my 75-year old father says he has this CD!

Anyway, I love this album now, which has stood the test of time with characters and a running theme throughout, and its themes are (unfortunately) as relevant as before.

This album contains probably their most popular song ever, “Boulevard of Broken Dreams,” which is beautiful, epic, and one to which many can relate. Last night I especially enjoyed the version of “Jesus of Suburbia” they did in the encore. My favorite on this album though is “Holiday”!! I just love this song and its video!!!

Revolution Radio

In preparation for the concert, I’ve listened to their new album Revolution Radio a lot, and I have to say it’s in my top 3 of their albums already. It sounds familiar already; it sounds like Green Day.

“I’m Still Breathing” is getting a lot of well-deserved attention as an anthem to perseverance. I think my favorite, however, is “Ordinary Day,” which Billie Joe played acoustically in the encore.

“What would you wish if you saw a shooting star In an ordinary world? I’ve walked to the end of the earth and afar In an ordinary world

Baby, I don’t have much But what we have is more than enough.
Where can I find the city of shining light? In an ordinary world
How can I leave a buried treasure behind? In an ordinary world”

I can relate as an “ordinary person” myself, but I hear this as him trying to find his place no longer being ordinary. I mean 25 years ago they were here playing on my college campus at Mabel’s, a dive-ish (though great!) venue, and now they roll back in to town to play State Farm Center as Rock and Roll Hall of Famers to thousands of fans! I can’t even imagine! Still when he played this song at the end of the concert, he manages to sound like an ordinary person, in a good way! You can check out this new song here.

Time of my life

After the “Ordinary World,” he closed, appropriately, with an acoustic Good Riddance/Time of your Life.”

“So take the photographs, and still-frames in your mind
Hang them on a shelf in good health and good time
Tattoo’s of memories and dead skin on trial
For what it’s worth, it was worth all the while
It’s something unpredictable, but in the end it’s right
I hope you had the time of your life”

Yes, Thank you Billie Joe and Green Day, for the soundtrack from college, for your epic albums and songs, and for rocking State Farm Center…I certainly did…have the time of my life!


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