Green Day’s Billie Joe Armstrong opens up about how his father’s death influenced ‘Wake Me Up When September Ends’

"It's something that just stayed with me"

Billie Joe Armstrong of Green Day has discussed the band’s 2004 single ‘Wake Me Up When September Ends’, shortly before performing it live on The Howard Stern Show on SiriusXM.

The song’s title comes from the words Armstrong said to his mother shortly after his father died, when the future frontman was 10 years old.

“I think it’s something that just stayed with me; the month of September being that anniversary that always is just, I don’t know, kind of a bummer,” Armstrong said to Stern shortly before the band’s performance of the song.


“But it’s weird. When things happen like that when you’re that young, it’s almost like life starts at year zero, or something like that.”

Armstrong went on to reveal that he still thinks about his late father when performing the song. “I think about him every day, really. I kinda avoided writing about him for many years, and then finally having a breakthrough like that felt good. It wasn’t like a negative emotion so much, but it was just kind of like honouring him.”

Meanwhile, it was recently revealed that Green Day get an annual spike in streams and sales of ‘Wake Me Up When September Ends’ at the end of every September.

The band are currently gearing up for the release of their new album ‘Father Of All…’, with the title track appearing as a single earlier this month.

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