While everyone is getting all worked up about Mariah Carey joining "American Idol" and Britney Spears signing on for "The X Factor," NBC's "The Voice" has quietly acquired a dream team of credible, if slightly less flashy, mentors to advise the show's coaches in Season 3. Matchbox Twenty's Rob Thomas will assist Cee Lo Green, Mary J. Blige (who was once rumored to be in the running for "Idol") will help Adam Levine, Michael Buble will be Blake Shelton's right-hand man...and now it has just been announced that Christina Aguilera will join forces with none other than Billie Joe Armstrong. OF GREEN DAY.
I am sure some punk purists will grumpily call this a sellout--and Green Day do have a new album to sell in September, probably not coincidentally the same month that "The Voice" returns to the airwaves. So this development most likely gives a whole new meaning to the title "Wake Me Up When September Ends" for all those naysayers. But those haters probably haven't followed Green Day for the past, oh, two decades or so, or else they'd know that Green Day "sold out" long ago--when the band started playing stadiums, firing very un-punk NASCAR-style T-shirt guns and Supersoakers at their 20,000-capacity audiences, and even covering "Stairway To Heaven," while red/white/blue confetti cannons and dry-ice smoke exploded around in all directions them.
Or, basically, when the band sold something like 65 million records worldwide.
My point is, Billie Joe Armstrong is not some punk singer. He's a ROCK STAR, plain and simple--and there are far, far too few real A-list rockers offering their own valuable opinions to aspiring singers on shows like "Idol" and "The Voice." So I truly believe that Billie Joe might be the most awesome addition to the "Voice" cast since Cee Lo adopted Purrfect the cat. (I wonder what Season 2 contestant Tony Vincent, who once starred in the Broadway production of Green Day's American Idiot musical, would think of all this? My guess is he'd agree with me.)
In a statement released today, Billie Joe--who started shooting his "Voice" segments this week--stated that he appreciates how "The Voice" is "not molding artists, it's just giving them a little bit of guidance and direction without giving them a complete makeover." And I'm pretty excited to see what sort of guidance and direction this punk-pop demigod will bring to "The Voice" Season 3, which premieres September 10.
Wake me up when September starts, please.