Ted Nugent approached Green Day recently and proposed a collaboration. Green Day apparently laughed in his face.
Green Day has fascinated me since Dookie. Here was a band--arguably, the fathers of the genre I so fondly refer to as "nerd rock"--that revelled in their awkward dorkiness. These guys would have been beaten to a pulp when I was in high school, and that made me feel old. They seemed to reject the mainstream while chasing success.
When American Idiot came out, I was again transfixed. Post-Dixie-Chicks (and "I'm not changing my fucking show*" Madonna, pansying out with the video for "American Life"), here was an album and a series of videos that had the huevos to address the perception of Americans abroad and question the war in Iraq itself ("Wake Me Up When September Ends"). In an era that is sadly lacking protest music, this was the closest thing I had seen or heard. (Hello? "Fortunate Son" by CCR, anyone? Anyone?)
Of course, the caustic political climate in the United States today is enough to scare even the most rebellious of pop stars. In Madonna's case, I suspect it was more about money. (Note to Madge: American Life remains the only one of your albums I did not purchase. Yes, it was out of principle.) The safety of her children might have been part of it, but she does live in the UK, after all. The Dixie Chicks--some of them mothers as well--came through their ordeal smelling a little better. The inclusion of "Travelin' Soldier" on Home, and the innocuous (and now infamous) remark at a European concert was protest-y, and I respected them for it.
So, thank you, Green Day, for giving Nuge a 'thanks but no thanks.' You guys might not be Bob Dylan, but you're a start.
* Madge uttered this phrase in Truth or Dare. She was facing objections from the uptight Toronto police, who were threatening to arrest her for indecency if she faux-masturbated on stage for a concert in my city.