As thousands of Americans struggles to rebuild after Hurricane Harvey, more and more celebrities have been joining forces to donate in relief efforts. Punk rock band Green Day are the latest to offer financial aid after seeing the tropical storm devastate Texas and Louisiana.
Hurricane Harvey’s strong winds and heavy rain caused residents of Texas to not only lose property, but also loved ones. Houses, cherished establishments, and vehicles the size of RVs lay in pieces. Thousands of residents have lost literally everything they have, and are struggling to fit in overpopulated shelters. On top of that, last week’s body count of 30 doubled to at least 60 this week with many more sure to come.
Figures like Kevin Hart, T.I., Nicki Minaj, the Kardashian-Jenner clan, JJ Watt, and Houston native Beyoncé have raised and donated an accumulated total of 22 million dollars to different relief programs so far. With the number still rising, Billie Joe, Mike, and Tre of Green Day pledged their own donation and a fundraiser.
Green Day’s never been the kind of band to keep quiet about social issues. They recently released a music video for their track “Troubled Times” that rotates around the immoralities of the United States. To help those in need, they made a direct donation to Americares, a health-focused charity that’s been present in Texas even before Harvey hit. For every $10 a person donates, Americares provides $200 in aid. In addition to delivering medicine and relief supplies, they also began transporting patients in need of dialysis.
At around 4:00AM local time, along with a $100,000 financial donation, Green Day hopped on Facebook Live for an intimate fundraising gig . Cramped backstage in Florida arena, the setting gave off a garage ambience—perfect for their setlist that mostly contained songs from earlier albums. The livestream proved to be a treat for many Green Day fans as they played tracks like “Paper Lanterns,” “2000 Lightyears Away,” “When I Come Around,” and “She”. As a sworn Green Day fan since my early grade school days (don’t test me), I got giddy when they played “Only Of You” from their 1990 album “39/Smooth,” “Christie Road” from “Kerplunk,” and “Coming Clean” from their beloved “Dookie” album. The last track is my all-time favorite Green Day song by the way, so just imagine my morning delight.
In between songs, the band prompted their fans to donate to Americares and to spread the news. Apart from their advocacy, the livestream once again demonstrated their first-class abilities as musicians. They usually play with a full band including Jason White on additional guitars and Jason Freese on other instruments, but they sound just as good as a trio which reminds me—I need to see them live again soon.