Support for LAist comes from
Made of L.A.
Stay Connected

Share This

This is an archival story that predates current editorial management.

This archival content was written, edited, and published prior to LAist's acquisition by its current owner, Southern California Public Radio ("SCPR"). Content, such as language choice and subject matter, in archival articles therefore may not align with SCPR's current editorial standards. To learn more about those standards and why we make this distinction, please click here.

Arts and Entertainment

Billie Joe Armstrong Calls Psy 'The Herpes Of Music'

Support your source for local news!
The local news you read here every day is crafted for you, but right now, we need your help to keep it going. In these uncertain times, your support is even more important. Today, put a dollar value on the trustworthy reporting you rely on all year long. We can't hold those in power accountable and uplift voices from the community without your partnership. Thank you.

Remember when "Gangnam Style" came out last year, and everyone experienced an immediate sensation of delight, like as if you had just done a few rapid-fire shots of whiskey? And then that delight went away as quickly as it came on, but you were still glad that it happened?

And then remember when Psy, the brains and talent behind "Gangnam Style," released "Gentleman" a few weeks ago, and that same instant but brief joy occurred, although to a lesser extent?

Well, there's at least one person among us who feels like those fleeting, meaningless-yet-wonderful spurts of happiness should be banished from this earth, and that person is Billie Joe Armstrong.

On Instagram, the Green Day frontman posted a photo of Psy and captioned it with, "This dude is the herpes of music. Once you think it's gone, it comes back. #herpes #flareup #pleasegoaway".

Support for LAist comes from

So, why the haterade? Butthurt? A general distaste for anyone who doesn't drown themselves in emotional black eyeliner? Or just music snobbery? Impossible to tell. But Armstrong has made his point.

Look -- no one is saying that Psy is dropping knowledge on the masses like some sort of modern-day Bob Dylan, but that doesn't mean that his music should be discounted and tossed aside like so much dirty laundry. There's something to be said for songs that just make people happy for no reason at all. Or, songs that make people annoyed, but the kind of annoyed that allows them to bond with other people who are also annoyed. It's called cultural criticism, Armstrong, and without it, we'd just be a ragtag group of savages.


Anyway, Psy comes out the classier party in all this, because in an interview with FUSE magazine, he responded to Armstrong's Insta by saying, "I kinda like it, it's cool...He said I'm like the herpes... that keeps coming back. I think it's really cool. Thank you."

Hang your head in shame, Billie Joe.

Most Read