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Good Charlotte
Good Charlotte
Background Information
Origin Waldorf, Maryland
Genre Pop Punk
Alternative Rock[1]
Years active 1996-present
Label(s) Sony BMG/Epic/Daylight
Associated Acts Dead Executives
Wakefield
The Summer Obsession
Website http://www.goodcharlotte.com
Members
Joel Madden
Benji Madden
Billy Dean Martin
Paul Thomas
Dean Butterworth
Former Members
Aaron Escolopio
Chris Wilson

Good Charlotte is an American rock band from Waldorf, Maryland that formed in 1996. They took their name from the children's book called "Good Charlotte: The Girls of Good Day Orphanage," written by Carol Beach York.

The members of the band are identical twin brothers Joel Madden (lead vocals) and Benji Madden (Lead guitar and backing vocals); Billy Martin (Rhythm guitar, keyboards), Paul Thomas (bass guitar) and Dean Butterworth (drums)

HistoryEdit

Good Charlotte (1996-2001)Edit

Good Charlotte started out by playing at small venues. They soon caught the attention of punk rock band, Lit, whose song "My Own Worst Enemy" was a chart topper at the time. Good Charlotte lost the opening slot on Lit's East Coast tour in 1999. Soon after, Good Charlotte played some dates with the band Blink-182, who had just experienced mainstream success with their album, Wikipedia:Enema of the State. All of this caught the attention of major music labels, and Good Charlotte eventually signed with Epic Records in 1999.

In 2000, they released their self-titled debut album Good Charlotte. Y100, a now-defunct radio station in Philadelphia spun Good Charlotte's song "Little Things" before it was released as a single. It ended up being a big success on the station, so big that on Y100's nightly "Cage Match" competition (where new songs were pitted against each other and listeners could vote on which was better), "Little Things" won fifteen nights in a row, beating out bigger names, before it was retired to the cage match hall of fame.

"Little Things" was later released as a single in 2001, and peaked at #23 on the U.S. Billboard Modern Rock Tracks chart[2]. In the second half of the year, three more singles were released from the album, "The Motivation Proclamation", "The Click" and "Festival Song".

The Young and the Hopeless (2002-2003)Edit

2002's The Young and the Hopeless marked the band's emergence into mainstream popularity. Their breakthrough single, titled "Lifestyles of the Rich & Famous", topped both pop and rock charts around the globe. Singles that followed from that album include "The Anthem", "Girls & Boys", "The Young and the Hopeless" and "Hold On". They thanked many other bands for their influences for this album, including Blink 182, Sum 41, NOFX and Green Day.

The album eventually went on to receive triple platinum certification (three million copies sold) from the RIAA[3]. During the course of the album's success, Good Charlotte landed appearances on Saturday Night Live, CNN, and The Today Show, the covers of Rolling Stone and Alternative Press magazines, and were also featured in The New York Times. They also became popular on MTV, where their music videos were played in heavy rotation on both MTV and MTV2. "Lifestyles of the Rich & Famous" received the "Viewers Choice Award" at the 2003 MTV Video Music Awards.

The band hired temporary drummers during the recording, release and touring of The Young and the Hopeless due to former drummer, Aaron Escolopio, having left the band before its release to join his brother's group, Wakefield. In 2003, the band added Chris Wilson as a drummer, he was introduced to the band through mutual friends from the group The Used. Also in 2003, the band made a cameo appearance in the King Gordy video for "Nightmares".

The Chronicles of Life and Death (2004-2006)Edit

Good Charlotte's third album, The Chronicles of Life and Death, was released by Blake Adam in 2004. The album received mixed reactions from both the music press and Good Charlotte's fanbase. The album has been widely considered a departure from their previous two albums, mixing new elements such as strings, synths, and more mature lyrical topics into Good Charlotte's youthful sound. Singles released from the album include the two hits "Predictable" and "I Just Wanna Live", as well as "The Chronicles of Life and Death" and "We Believe". The only single from The Chronicles of Life and Death which managed to chart upon the U.S. Hot 100 was the hit "I Just Wanna Live". All of the singles released from the album went top 30 in the UK, except for "We Believe".

In May 2005, after much speculation from fans, it was officially confirmed that Chris Wilson had left the band citing personal health reasons. Benji also told Kerrang! magazine that, for him, "Chris leaving the band was the worst part of 2005". Chris then joined a pop/rock band The Summer Obsession but because of its split in 2007, he currently plays drums in Allegiance To The Fire.

On Good Charlotte's "Noise to the World Tour", performing with Simple Plan and Relient K, the band recruited Dean Butterworth (who had previously played for Morrissey) as the band's temporary drummer. Later, in March 2007, Butterworth was confirmed as the band's permanent drummer.

Benji Madden has claimed in interviews that he feels this record was not as successful as the previous record due to it being "too selfish."

Good Morning Revival (2007-2008)Edit

Good Morning Revival is the fourth album by Good Charlotte and the follow up to 2004's The Chronicles of Life and Death. It was officially released in March 2007, with the precise date varying by country.
Good Morning Revival debuted in the top 10 of thirteen countries worldwide including the U.S., giving the band some of their highest international chart positions thus far. At midnight, on January 23, 2007, the forthcoming record was made available for pre-order on iTunes. When pre-ordered, the single, "The River" was downloaded immediately, while the rest of the album was queued to be downloaded on the released date. Pre-ordering on iTunes also provided the exclusive bonus acoustic version of the aforementioned single.

The first single from the album, "The River", featuring Avenged Sevenfold's lead singer, M. Shadows and guitarist Synyster Gates, appeared online on January 4, 2007 and was released as the first single from the album in North America. The music video for "The River" was added to UK music channels Kerrang! and Scuzz on April 13, 2007, making it the second single released from the album in the UK. The song charted at #108. "Keep Your Hands off My Girl" was released as the first single in the UK and Australia. "Keep Your Hands Off My Girl" charted on the UK Singles Chart at #36 the first week of release through download sales and then climbed to #23 when released in stores. The second single released in North America was "Dance Floor Anthem", with which the band had scored a surprise hit, making it onto eleven different Billboard charts and peaking at #2 in Australia. The "Keep Your Hands Off My Girl" video was recently certified gold by MTV International. It was played 3,000 times on over 4 continents during the first half of 2007. On January 1, 2008, Good Charlotte was featured on Tila Tequila's New Years Eve Masquerade on MTV, as they were the second performance of the new year and performed their hit "Dance Floor Anthem".

The band made multiple U.S. and international TV appearances in support of the album. First, Good Charlotte appeared on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno on April 9, 2007, the Outdoor Stage on Jimmy Kimmel Live on April 11, and on The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson on April 27. Joel and Benji Madden, Good Charlotte's lead singer and guitarist respectively, co-hosted the Australian MTV Video Music Awards with Fergie on April 29, 2007 where the band also won the "Viewers Choice Australia" award for "Keep Your Hands Off My Girl". In August 2007, the band embarked on Wikipedia:Justin Timberlake's FutureSex/LoveShow tour, as Timberlake's opening act. Good Charlotte supported Timberlake throughout his second leg North American dates. They were present for the August 16, 2007 show in Madison Square Garden, which was taped for a HBO broadcast.

In 2008, Good Charlotte appeared on the Three 6 Mafia track off of their new CD Last 2 Walk called "My Own Way".

On November 25, "Greatest Remixes" was released. This compilation album includes 15 songs from previous Good Charlotte albums remixed by other artists like Metro Station, Junior Sanchez, The Academy Is..., and The White Tie Affair feat. Mat Devine of Kill Hannah.

Cardiology (2009)Edit

Good Charlotte are currently in the studio recording their fifth studio album, which is slated for release in mid-2009. Describing the sound to MTV news, Joel Madden said it would sound a lot like Blink-182.[4] Later on, a blog posted on the official Good Charlotte website, Joel mentioned that he didn't mean the album would sound like Blink-182, but sound more like a pop-punk record.[5] Joel Madden went on to say in the same MTV interview that "There's nothing dance-y on the record, though, at all, which is different from our last one," [6] further implicating a movement away from the sound of Good Morning Revival. In late November, Grammy-winning southern rapper Chamillionaire announced that the band would be featured on his third studio album, Venom.

On December 3rd Kerrang! magazine announced that Good Charlotte would be releasing their fifth studio album, Cardiology in 2009. The title of which, according to Joel, comes from the lyrical content of the album, which he explained is "all connected to the heart". Joel also revealed that producers for the new album could include Don Gilmore, Trevor Horn and John Feldmann. Madden also added that they have already written 20 songs for the new album, and are said to be heading back to their pop-punk roots.

ActivismEdit

Band members Joel Madden and Billy Martin are active vegetarians, and Benji Madden is vegan. In the past they actively supported PETA's animal rights campaigns. Members of the group recorded a track, "Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous", on PETA's Liberation CD and appeared at PETA's 25th Anniversary Gala and Humanitarian Awards Show.[7] Group members have also demonstrated against KFC's treatment of chickens. PETA and the band went their separate ways when news emerged that the band's partners are pro-fur.

Good Charlotte has shown support for Washington, D.C. punk and youth activist group Positive Force D.C. on multiple occasions. In 2004, the band organized a special benefit show for the group. The show raised thousands of dollars for Positive Force which was also shared with the D.C. Area Books to Prisons Project, Prevention Works! Needle Exchange program and We Are Family - a DC based advocacy and service provider for low-income seniors in D.C. neighborhoods.

The twins have also posed for the YouthAIDS Aldo "Aldo Fights AIDS" dog tag campaign. They stand side by side, eyes shut, on the "See No Evil?" dog-tag packaging. Joel holds his hands in prayer, whereas Benji's face is contorted and angry and his hand is in a fist.

Good Charlotte also supports the fight against AIDS, as shown in the design of a t-shirt designed by the band's guitarist, Billy Martin, for the H&M Fashion Against AIDS campaign[8]. The t-shirt displays a couple under an umbrella, protecting both of themselves from the rain, as a metaphor for using protection.

Good Charlotte also appeared as a guest star on Nickelodeon's iCarly's first movie: iGo to Japan performing the song Where Would We Be Now almost at the very end of the movie.

DiscographyEdit

Main article: Good Charlotte discography

AwardsEdit

Main article: List of Good Charlotte awards

Band membersEdit

  • Joel Madden - lead vocals (1996–present)
  • Benji Madden - guitars, backing vocals (1996–present)
  • Billy Martin - guitars, keyboards (1996–present)
  • Paul Thomas - bass (1996–present)
  • Dean Butterworth - drums, percussion (2005–present)

Former membersEdit

Temporary membersEdit

  • Dusty Brill - Played as a drummer with the band after Aaron Escolopio left the band.
  • Cyrus Bolooki - Played as a drummer at some dates with Good Charlotte on tour.
  • Josh Freese - Recorded the The Young and the Hopeless album as a drummer.
  • Robin Eckman of bands Elder Statesmen, Burn the Fields and Zonder - Played as a drummer on the tour for "The Chronicles of Life and Death" in Australia, Europe and Asia.
  • Derek Grant of the band Alkaline Trio - Played drums for Good Charlotte at MuchMusic Intimate and Interactive during the promotional tour of "The Chronicles of Life and Death"

ReferencesEdit

  1. Good Charlotte Biography - AOL Music
  2. Good Charlotte Billboard Chart History
  3. RIAA Certification Database
  4. MTV News
  5. Goodcharlotte.com
  6. [1]
  7. PETA's 25th Anniversary Gala and Humanitarian Awards Show
  8. H&M Fashion Against AIDS

External linksEdit


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