At Sunday’s AMA Awards, Green Day used their spotlight for political advocacy: while performing their single “Bang Bang,” the band burst into a chant of, “No Trump, no KKK, no fascist USA,” a nod to Austin punk band M.D.C. Billie Joe Armstrong and Co. appeared on The Late Late Show Tuesday night to discuss their moment of protest.
“We didn’t rehearse it,” the lead singer explained, as fans whooped and cheered. “We’re just as much in shock as everybody else is about this,” he added. “But I think with the AMAs [performance], it was a good start to challenge [Trump] on all of his ignorant policies and his racism.”
Armstrong made sure to point out the original source of his “No Trump” chant, which has become popular at anti-Trump protests around the country. “It was actually done by a band called M.D.C. that are from Texas but moved to San Francisco years ago,” he said. On the group’s 1982 song “Born to Die,” singer Dave Dictor chants, “No war, no KKK, no fascist USA.”
Speaking with Rolling Stone following Green Day’s AMAs performance, Dictor commended the band’s actions. “I just totally applaud it,” he said. “It’s something that needs to be said, and they obviously have the platform to get that thought out there far and wide. Good on them.”
Corden’s interview with Green Day ended on a lighter note, as the late-night host asked members of the band where they were when they found out they were going to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. (Green Day became members last year.) “I was in Walmart, trying to find a record with the word ‘fuck’ in it,” drummer Tré Cool quipped. “I couldn’t find one.”