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Billie Joe Armstrong Takes Lead in 'American Idiot'

Green Day frontman will step into role of St. Jimmy for eight performances, starting tomorrow

September 27, 2010 9:31 AM ET

Green Day's Billie Joe Armstrong will make his Broadway debut tomorrow, playing the role of St. Jimmy in the American Idiot musical. Armstrong is taking over for actor Tony Vincent, who is on a two-week break. Tickets for all eight of Armstrong's performances are on sale now at Telecharge. Vincent will return to the production on October 12th.

Green Day's American Idiot Musical: Meet the Show's Rocker Cast

The cast of American Idiot have joined Green Day onstage on several occasions, but this will be the first time Armstrong has acted with them. He will sing lead on a number of Idiot tracks including "Know Your Enemy," "Homecoming" and "St. Jimmy." Armstrong will rejoin Green Day on October 8th, as the band embarks on a tour of South America. Understudies Andrew Call and Joshua Kobak will then take over as St. Jimmy until Vincent returns.

Video: Green Day on American Idiot

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Song Stories

“Try a Little Tenderness”

Otis Redding | 1966

This pop standard had been previously recorded by dozens of artists, including by Bing Crosby 33 years before Otis Redding, who usually wrote his own songs, cut it. It was actually Sam Cooke’s 1964 take, which Redding’s manager played for Otis, that inspired the initially reluctant singer to take on the song. Isaac Hayes, then working as Stax Records’ in-house producer, handled the arrangement, and Booker T. and the MG’s were the backing band. Redding’s soulful version begins quite slowly and tenderly itself before mounting into a rousing, almost religious “You’ve gotta hold her, squeeze her …” climax. “I did that damn song you told me to do,” Redding told his manager. “It’s a brand new song now.”

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