Green Day's Billie Joe still has moments of self-doubt

Billie Joe Armstrong
Billie Joe Armstrong (Image credit: Getty)

Green Day’s Billie Joe Armstrong admits that he still has moments of self-doubt when he’s not doing anything after labouring over the band for two decades.

Bassist Mike Dirnt recalls how the frontman insisted the trio worked non-stop “for 20 years,” practicing six times a week and treating the band “like a vintage sports car” that would rust if they didn’t keep it tuned up.

But Armstrong admits his motto wasn’t true – and he learned that the hard way – resorting to pills and alcohol to get through the day at his lowest ebb. He has now been sober for four years.

He tells Rolling Stone: “You can’t be enthusiastic for the sake of enthusiasm. You have to get out of trying to outdo and one-up yourself all the time.

“We had to break that habit, because suddenly we weren’t really being ourselves anymore. I was a little burnt out on being in Green Day. We needed to stop.”

Though Armstrong has learned to take the occasional break from the band, he admits that having too much down-time can take its toll on his morale. He says Revolution Radio’s first track, Somewhere Now, is about feeling “spiritually broken.”

He adds: “It’s just that gloom and trying to rise above it. Sometimes when you’re home by yourself, there’s that feeling that you’re kind of spiritually unemployed – and you’re trying to figure out who you are.

“It’s about going, ‘What’s the most honest thing I can say about myself right now?’ That’s sort of what the record is about.”

Revolution Radio is out on October 7. It’s available for pre-order.

They’ll tour North America this autumn before hitting Europe in January 2017. Tickets will go on general sale from tomorrow (September 9) from 9am local time via the band’s official website.

Revolution Radio artwork

Revolution Radio artwork

Green Day Revolution Radio tracklist

  1. Somewhere Now
  2. Bang Bang
  3. Revolution Radio
  4. Say Goodbye
  5. Outlaws
  6. Bouncing Off The Wall
  7. Still Breathing
  8. Youngblood
  9. Too Dumb To Die
  10. Troubled Times
  11. Forever Now
  12. Ordinary World

Green Day North American, European tour dates

Sep 20: St. Louis The Pageant, MO
Sep 21: Chicago Aragon Ballroom, IL
Sep 23: Toronto World Cup Of Hockey, ON
Sep 24: Detroit Fillmore, MI
Sep 26: Columbus Newport Music Hall, OH
Sep 28: Sayreville Starland Theater, NJ
Sep 29: Philadelphia Tower Theatre, PA
Oct 01: Boston House Of Blues, MA
Oct 03: Washington 9:30 Club, DC
Oct 08: New York Webster Hall, NY
Oct 17: Los Angeles Palladium, CA
Oct 20: Berkeley UC Theatre, CA
Jan 10: Turin Pala Alpitour, Italy
Jan 11: Florence Mandela Forum, Italy
Jan 13: Bologna Unipol Arena, Italy
Jan 14: Milan Mediolanum Forum, Italy
Jan 16: Zurich Hallenstadion, Switzerland
Jan 18: Manheim SAP Arena, Germany
Jan 19: Berlin Mercedes Benz Arena, Germany
Jan 25: Oslo Spektrum, Norway
Jan 27: Stockholm Globe, Sweden
Jan 28: Malmo Arena, Sweden
Jan 30: Cologne Lanxesse Arena, Germany
Jan 31: Amsterdam Ziggo Dome, Holland
Feb 02: Brussels Forest National, Belgium
Feb 03: Paris Accorhotels Arena, France
Feb 05: Leeds First Direct Arena, UK
Feb 06: Manchester Arena, UK
Feb 08: London The O2, UK
Jun 23: Scheesel Hurricane Festival, Germany
Jun 24: Tuttlingen Southside Festival, Germany

Modern Classics: Green Day - Insomniac

Former TeamRock news desk member Christina joined our team in late 2015, and although her time working on online rock news was fairly brief, she made a huge impact by contributing close to 1500 stories. Christina also interviewed artists including Deftones frontman Chino Moreno and worked at the Download festival. In late 2016, Christina left rock journalism to pursue a career in current affairs. In 2021, she was named Local Weekly Feature Writer of the Year at the Scottish Press Awards.