Having the Time of your Life with Volkswagen

Time of your Life

Green Day’s “Good Riddance (Time of Your Life)” is a staple of TV shows and funerals. It’s also exceptionally popular at High School proms, capturing the nostalgia felt when finally leaving school, culminating in its inclusion in Rolling Stone’s 20 best graduation songs of the past 25 years.  It reached another level of prominence in the UK in 1998, when ITV used it to soundtrack England’s departure from the World Cup. 

One of Green Day’s most popular songs — and one of their few ballads — it also features at the end of their concerts, with a heartfelt singalong. But while the song was recorded in 1993 — written by Billie Joe Armstrong about his girlfriend moving to Ecuador — it wasn’t picked to feature on Dookie, due to its acoustic nature on the otherwise punk rock album. Instead, it featured near the end of Nimrod in 1997, with added strings. Rather different from their usual work, it has been covered by the most unusual suspects, including Glen Campbell in 2008.  

The album version famously differs from the radio-friendly single, with Armstrong muttering “fuck” under his breath after messing up the chords and having to start again, giving the start of the song a lighthearted feel. It performed exceptionally well for the band too, peaking at number 11 on the Billboard Hot 100 Airplay chart and eventually selling over five million copies, making it the band’s most successful release. 

But it has never been used in an advertisement before… until now! Tracks and Fields licensed the track for a special Mother’s Day advertisement from Volkswagen, handled by DDB Germany / DDB Paris, and produced by Anorak Film, marking the first Green Day license for any advert from before and including American Idiot! Please feel free to check out the 40-second spot below!

Agency: DDB Germany / DDB Paris | Production Company: ANORAK Film | Music Research and Licensing: Tracks and Fields

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