American Idiot is the seventh studio album by the American punk rock band Green Day. It was released on September 21, 2004 through Reprise Records and was produced by longtime collaborator Rob Cavallo. In mid-2003, the band began recording songs for an album titled Cigarettes and Valentines. But, the master tracks were stolen and the band decided to start recording a new album rather than re-record Cigarettes and Valentines.
Green Day decided to produce a rock opera, inspired by the work of The Who and several musicals. The album follows the life of Jesus of Suburbia, a character with "anti-hero" image created by Billie Joe Armstrong. Following early recording at Studio 880 in Oakland, California, the band finished the album at Ocean Way Recording in Hollywood.
The album achieved success worldwide, charting in 27 countries and peaking at number one in 19 of them, including the United States and the United Kingdom. Since its release, American Idiot has sold over 14 million copies worldwide, over 6 million copies of which were in the United States alone, including 267,000 in its opening week. The album spawned five successful singles, including the international hits "American