American Idiot chords by Green Day


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American Idiot chords and lyrics

Intro

||: Ab Db Gb | Gb Db Ab Gb :||

Verse 1

||: N.C | N.C G | Ab Db | Gb Db Ab Gb :||
Don’t wanna be an American idiot.
Don’t want a nation under the new media.
And can you hear the sound of hysteria?
The subliminal mind fuck America!

Chorus 1

| Db | Db | Ab | Ab |
Welcome to a new kind of tension, all across the alien nation,
| Eb | Eb | Ab | Ab |
where everything isn’t meant to be OK.
| Db | Db | Ab | Ab |
Television dreams of tomorrow, we’re not the ones who’re meant to follow,
| Eb | Eb | N.C | N.C G |
for that’s enough to argue.

Instrumental 1

||: Ab Db Gb | Gb Db Ab Gb :||

Verse 2

||: N.C | N.C G | Ab Db | Gb Db Ab Gb :||
Well, maybe I’m the faggot America.
I’m not a part of a redneck agenda.
Now everybody do the propaganda.
And sing along to the age of paranoia.

Chorus 2

| Db | Db | Ab | Ab |
Welcome to a new kind of tension, all across the alien nation.
| Eb | Eb | Ab | Ab |
Where everything isn’t meant to be okay.
| Db | Db | Ab | Ab |
Television dreams of tomorrow, we’re not the ones who’re meant to follow,
| Eb | Eb | N.C | N.C G |
for that’s enough to argue.

Instrumental 2

||: Ab Db Gb | Gb Db Ab Gb :|| x4

Solo

| Db | Db | Ab | Ab |
| Eb | Eb | Ab | Ab |
| Db | Db | Ab | Ab |
| Eb | Eb | N.C | N.C G |

||: N.C | N.C G :||

Verse 3

||: N.C | N.C G :||
Don’t want to be an American idiot.
One nation, controlled by the media.
Information age of hysteria.
It’s going out to idiot America.

Chorus 3

| Db | Db | Ab | Ab |
Welcome to a new kind of tension, all across the alien nation,
| Eb | Eb | Ab | Ab |
where everything isn’t meant to be OK.
| Db | Db | Ab | Ab |
Television dreams of tomorrow, we’re not the ones who are meant to follow,
| Eb | Eb | N.C (Ab Db Gb) | N.C (Gb Db Ab) G |
for that’s enough to argue.

Outro

||: Ab Db Gb | Gb Db Ab Gb :|| x3
| Ab Db Gb | Gb Db Ab |


American Idiot chords and progressions

Being in the key of Ab (one could easily falsely assume they’ve tuned down a semitone and actually play in A), the verse chords cleverly disguise the I chord by finishing the initial verse progression on the bVIIx before a rest. This creates tension.

||: N.C | N.C G | Ab Db | Gb Db Ab Gb :||

At the end of the rest in both the verse and chorus, Billy Joe plays an open G. This chord has loads of tension as it is outside the key by a semitone.

This quick G chord also gives away that the guitars are not tuned down a semitone, clever stuff!

As the chorus kicks in, we start on chord IV, before moving to I – V I. Repeat this but finish with a rest, instead of chord I, and the tension is maintained.

All chords of American Idiot are played as either E shapes or A shapes and should probably be 5 chords for maximum punkiness.

Staying true to their simplistic punk pop roots, there are no more chords to worry about in American Idiot.


American Idiot, another Green Day classic

Released on Green Day’s seventh studio album, American Idiot was the lead single off the album bearing the same name.

As an instant success, it hit the charts the world over in 2004 and was destined to become yet another signature song for the band alongside Basket Case, and Time Of Your Life.

American Idiot is essentially a punk pop protest song, criticizing the American media for dumbing down its population around issues like war by intercutting footage from Iraq with ads, all in the name of more publicity.

On Rolling Stone’s 500 Greatest Songs Of All Time list, it claimed the #432 spot.


American Idiot | Related pages


Green Day

Green Day Biography

Green Day’s third album, Dookie (94), took the band to superstardom. With fifteen million copies sold, they became everyone’s favorite punk trio.

After a few more albums, Green Day released American Idiot (04). This firmly established them as one of the best-known bands in the world.

Go to Green Day.


Discontinued

Over the years, Spytunes have recorded many songs, some of these used to be in eBooks and courses but for one reason or another have been discontinued.

Since they have video guitar lessons, I’ve kept these and added chords and lyrics.

Go to Discontinued.


Song Book

As a guitarist, a repertoire is the greatest asset you can acquire. It is your ticket to playing with other musicians.

To help you on this journey, I’ve gathered tunes I play with acoustic duos, Jazz trios, Indie/Rock/Party bands as well as large Soul/Motown ensembles.

Go to Song Book.


Copyright + Comments

Studying great songs is the best way for a musician to develop, we believe displaying chords and lyrics falls under “fair use in education”.

If you are the copyright holder and do not wish to be represented in this way, or want to comment on anything in these lessons, do reach out.

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