Two days after a profanity-laden rant onstage at Clear Channel’s iHeartRadio festival in Las Vegas, Green Day frontman Billie Joe Armstrong has entered rehab. A statement posted on the band’s Facebook page reads:
“Billie Joe is seeking treatment for substance abuse. We would like everyone to know that our set was not cut short by Clear Channel and to apologize to those we offended at the iHeartRadio Festival in Las Vegas. We regretfully must postpone some of our upcoming promotional appearances.”
Green Day performed on the first of the fest’s two days alongside Rihanna, Lil Wayne, No Doubt, Usher, Miranda Lambert, Bon Jovi, Swedish House Mafia, Jason Aldean, and Megan & Liz. As the band’s set wound down, Armstrong announced, “Oh, fuck this shit,” and cut the band off during “Basket Case.” Turning to drummer Tré Cool, he said, “I’m gonna play a fucking new song.” Noting a clock indicating the band had only one minute left, Armstrong became unhinged.
“Fuck this shit. Give me a fucking break,” he yelled. “One minute left. One minute fucking left. You’re gonna give me one fucking minute? Look at that fucking sign right there: one minute. Let me fucking tell you something, let me tell you something, I’ve been around since fucking 198-fucking-8. And you’re gonna give me one fucking minute? You’ve gotta be fucking kidding me! You’re fucking kidding me. What the fuck. I’m not fucking Justin Bieber, you motherfuckers. You’ve gotta be fucking joking. This is a fucking joke. I got one minute, one minute left, oh, now I got nothing left. Let me show you what one fucking minute fucking means.” Then he smashed his gold Les Paul to pieces. “One minute,” he shouted, flipping the bird. “God fucking love you all. We’ll be back.” For the record, that’s a 20-fuck rant.
There were no indications Armstrong was in distress when SPIN saw the band play a nearly 40-song marathon set in New York last week (see photos and read a full report here). The group is scheduled to begin a large arena tour on November 26 following appearances in San Francisco and at New Orleans’ Voodoo fest. Armstrong is also scheduled to help mentor singers on Christina Aguilera’s team on The Voice.
Armstrong’s most recent tweet on his personal account is dated September 19: “Saw a screening of
@pitchperfect and laughed my ass off! Go see it!”