Holiday (Green Day song)

"Holiday" is a song by American rock band Green Day. It was released as the third single from the group's seventh studio album American Idiot, and is also the third track. The song is in the key of F minor. Though the song is a prelude to "Boulevard of Broken Dreams", "Holiday" was released as a single later on, in March 2005.

Green Day - Holiday cover.jpg
Single by Green Day
from the album American Idiot
ReleasedMarch 12, 2005 (2005-03-12)
RecordedMarch 26, 2004 (2004-03-26)
GenrePop punk[1]
Lyricist(s)Billie Joe Armstrong
Green Day singles chronology
"Boulevard of Broken Dreams"
"Wake Me Up When September Ends"
Music video
"Holiday" on YouTube
Audio sample

The song achieved considerable popularity across the world and performed moderately well on the charts. In the US, it reached number 19 on the US Billboard Hot 100 and number one on the Hot Modern Rock Tracks and Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks charts. It debuted at number 11 in the United Kingdom and reached the top 20 in Canada, Denmark, Ireland, New Zealand, and Norway.

The song has appeared in various media, including the 2006 comedy film Accepted and an episode of CSI: NY. It was also used as the goal song of the Vancouver Canucks during their run to the 2011 Stanley Cup Finals; the Canucks also reused it for Henrik Sedin's personal goal song in 2016–17 and for the team as a whole during the 2018–19 NHL season.[2] "Holiday" was also featured in the soundtrack of the video game Tony Hawk's American Wasteland.[3]


One of two explicitly political songs on the album (the other being fellow single "American Idiot"),[4] "Holiday" took two months to finish writing, as Armstrong continually felt his lyrics were not good enough. Aided by the encouragement of Cavallo, he completed the song.[5] "Holiday" was inspired by the music of Bob Dylan.[6] Armstrong wanted to write something stronger than "American Idiot", with harsh language to illustrate his points. The song takes aim at American conservatism. Armstrong felt that Republican politicians were "strategic" in alienating one group of people—for example, the gay community—in order to buy the votes of another.[7] He later characterized the song as an outspoken "fuck you" to then-President George W. Bush.[8] Armstrong for the first time imagined how he would perform the songs he was writing, and envisioned an audience responding to his lyric "Can I get another Amen?"[9] The song's bridge, which Armstrong hoped to be as "twisted as possible," was designed as a "politician's worst nightmare."[6]

The chorus's refrain—"This is our lives on holiday"—was intended to reflect the average American's apathy on the issues of the day.[10] Armstrong characterized the song as "not anti-American, it’s anti-war."[11]

Live performancesEdit

In live performances, video screens would display footage of helicopters dropping bombs.[11] In New Jersey, at the Revolution Radio Tour, the lyrics "Pulverize the Eiffel Towers" were changed to "Pulverize the Donald Trump Towers".[12]

Depending on the location of the performance, the lyric "the representative from California now has the floor" will be changed to reference the country or state where the song is being performed. e.g., "the representative from United Kingdom now has the floor".

Music videoEdit

The first half of the video takes place in a car (a 1968 Mercury Monterey convertible), where Billie Joe Armstrong, Mike Dirnt and Tré Cool are partying around in Las Vegas. In the second half they are cavorting in a bar where each of the band members portrays several different characters. Billie Joe Armstrong plays the mentioned Representative of California, two fighting clients, a punk rocker and a nerd. Tré Cool plays a drunken priest, an arrested patron, and a female prostitute. Mike Dirnt plays the barman, another punk, and a policeman. There are also scenes featuring seemingly worn-down can-can dancers. At the end of the video, the car smokes to a halt in the field that "Boulevard of Broken Dreams" begins in. Like the video for "Boulevard of Broken Dreams", this video was directed by Samuel Bayer.

The band arrived at the 2005 MTV Video Music Awards in the same car, this time "pimped out" by James Washburn, a friend of the band.

Track listingsEdit

US promo CD[13]
1."Holiday" (clean radio edit)3:55
UK and European CD1[14]
2."Minority" (live)6:01
UK and European CD 2[15]
2."Holiday" (live)4:06
3."Boulevard of Broken Dreams" (live)4:24

UK 7-inch picture disc[16]

Side A
Side B
1."Minority" (live)6:01
  • Live tracks were recorded on September 21, 2004, at the Irving Plaza in New York City.


Credits are adapted from the UK-European CD1 liner notes.[14]

Charts and certificationsEdit

Notable coversEdit

Single by Scuba Dice
ReleasedMarch 13, 2006 (2006-03-13)
Scuba Dice singles chronology

The song was first covered by the Irish pop punk band Scuba Dice in 2006 and charted at number eight on the Irish Singles Chart, number two on the download chart that week, and went on to be the 42nd-best-selling single of 2008 by an Irish artist.[44]

Hayseed Dixie also performed a bluegrass cover of the song on the band's album A Hot Piece of Grass.

The song "Dr. Who on Holiday", from the mash-up album American Edit, combines "Holiday", The KLF single "Doctorin' the Tardis", and the original theme from the television show Doctor Who, while the intro juxtaposes George W. Bush with the Daleks, a race of monsters from the aforementioned British television series.


  1. ^ Pauker, Lance (January 22, 2014). "49 Phenomenally Angsty Pop-Punk Songs From The 2000s You Forgot Existed". Thought Catalog. The Thought & Expression Co. Archived from the original on October 10, 2014. Retrieved March 13, 2016.
  2. ^ Wagner, Daniel (October 15, 2019). "Fans want "Holiday" back as the Canucks' goal song, but here's what it should be". Vancouver Courier. Retrieved April 29, 2020.
  3. ^ "Activision Announces Complete Song Line-Up For Tony Hawk's American Wasteland". GameZone. October 7, 2005. Retrieved April 29, 2020.
  4. ^ Ian Winwood (May 9, 2012). "The Secrets Behind The Songs: "American Idiot"". Kerrang!. London: Bauer Media Group (1414). ISSN 0262-6624.
  5. ^ Steve Baltin (January 1, 2005). "Green Day". AMP. pp. 62–66.
  6. ^ a b Victoria Durham (March 1, 2005). "Green Day: Let The Good Times Roll". Rock Sound. London: Freeway Press Inc. (70): 50–55. ISSN 1465-0185.
  7. ^ "International Superhits". Kerrang!. London: Bauer Media Group (1061): 52–53. June 18, 2005. ISSN 0262-6624.
  8. ^ Sinclair, Tom (February 5, 2014). "How Green Day saved rock -- and their own career". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved May 20, 2017.
  9. ^ Winwood 2010, p. 50.
  10. ^ John Colapinto (November 17, 2005). "Green Day: Working Class Heroes". Rolling Stone. New York City: Wenner Media LLC (987): 50–56. ISSN 0035-791X. Retrieved June 3, 2015.
  11. ^ a b Matt Hendrickson (February 24, 2005). "Green Day and the Palace of Wisdom". Rolling Stone. New York City: Wenner Media LLC (968). ISSN 0035-791X. Retrieved June 3, 2015.
  12. ^ Angermiller, Michele (September 29, 2016). "Green Day Slams Donald Trump, Swaps 'Trump Towers' Into 'Holiday' Lyrics at New Jersey Show: Watch". Billboard. Retrieved September 30, 2020.
  13. ^ Holiday (US promo CD liner notes). Green Day. Reprise Records, WEA. 2005. PRO-CDR-101500.CS1 maint: others in cite AV media (notes) (link)
  14. ^ a b Holiday (UK & European CD1 liner notes). Green Day. Reprise Records, WEA International. 2005. W664CD1, 5439 16097 2.CS1 maint: others in cite AV media (notes) (link)
  15. ^ Holiday (UK & European CD2 liner notes). Green Day. Reprise Records, WEA International. 2005. W664CD2, 9362 42786 2.CS1 maint: others in cite AV media (notes) (link)
  16. ^ Holiday (UK 7-inch picture disc sleeve). Green Day. Reprise Records, WEA International. 2005. W664, 54391-6097-7.CS1 maint: others in cite AV media (notes) (link)
  17. ^ " – Green Day – Holiday". ARIA Top 50 Singles.
  18. ^ " – Green Day – Holiday" (in German). Ö3 Austria Top 40.
  19. ^ "R&R Canada CHR/Pop Top 30" (PDF). Radio & Records. No. 1614. July 8, 2005. p. 27. Retrieved October 16, 2020.
  20. ^ "RR Canada Rock Top 30" (PDF). Radio & Records. No. 1603. April 22, 2005. p. 58. Retrieved October 8, 2019.
  21. ^ "ČNS IFPI" (in Czech). Hitparáda – Radio Top 100 Oficiální. IFPI Czech Republic. Note: Change the chart to CZ – RADIO – TOP 100 and insert 200615 into search.
  22. ^ " – Green Day – Holiday". Tracklisten.
  23. ^ " – Green Day – Holiday" (in German). GfK Entertainment Charts. Retrieved January 19, 2019.
  24. ^ "Archívum – Slágerlisták – MAHASZ" (in Hungarian). Dance Top 40 lista. Magyar Hanglemezkiadók Szövetsége. Retrieved April 2, 2020.
  25. ^ "The Irish Charts – Search Results – Holiday". Irish Singles Chart.
  26. ^ " – Green Day – Holiday". Top 40 Singles.
  27. ^ " – Green Day – Holiday". VG-lista.
  28. ^ "Official Scottish Singles Sales Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved January 19, 2019.
  29. ^ " – Green Day – Holiday". Singles Top 100.
  30. ^ " – Green Day – Holiday". Swiss Singles Chart.
  31. ^ "Official Singles Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved January 19, 2019.
  32. ^ "Official Rock & Metal Singles Chart Top 40". Official Charts Company. Retrieved January 19, 2019.
  33. ^ "Green Day Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard.
  34. ^ "Green Day Chart History (Adult Pop Songs)". Billboard.
  35. ^ "Green Day Chart History (Alternative Airplay)". Billboard.
  36. ^ "Green Day Chart History (Mainstream Rock)". Billboard.
  37. ^ "Green Day Chart History (Pop Songs)". Billboard.
  38. ^ "Green Day Awards". AllMusic. Archived from the original on April 28, 2015. Retrieved August 17, 2020.
  39. ^ "The Official UK Singles Chart 2005" (PDF). UKChartsPlus. Retrieved January 19, 2019.
  40. ^ "Top 100 Songs of 2005 - Billboard Year End Charts". Archived from the original on June 29, 2012. Retrieved January 19, 2019.
  41. ^ "Italian single certifications – Green Day – Holiday" (in Italian). Federazione Industria Musicale Italiana. Retrieved October 2, 2017. Select "2017" in the "Anno" drop-down menu. Select "Holiday" in the "Filtra" field. Select "Singoli" under "Sezione".
  42. ^ "British single certifications – Green Day – Holiday". British Phonographic Industry. Retrieved November 9, 2020.
  43. ^ "American single certifications – Green Day – Holiday". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved August 5, 2020. If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Single, then click SEARCH. 
  44. ^ "About RTÉ: RTÉ's You're A Star Storms The Charts". March 16, 2007. Archived from the original on September 4, 2011. Retrieved January 11, 2012.

External linksEdit