Yesterday marked the 20th anniversary of one of my favorite albums as a teenager. Green Day's Dookie was released February 1, 1994. A little over a month later, I turned 13 but had no knowledge of this record yet. A few months after that, during the summer, everything changed.
I was on vacation with my family the first time I saw the music video for Basket Case on MTV. I didn't have cable growing up so MTV wasn't commonplace in my life. Seeing this type of thing was rare and it happened at just the right time. The chugging guitar riff in the intro, the roar of the drums as the song kicked into gear, every bit of it swirled together in my new teenaged brain and left a mark that remains to this day.
That same year I saved up enough money for my first CD player (Sony Discman...duh). Dookie was one my first purchases. I'll never forget listening to it for the first time. Hearing all of those other songs that weren't played on the radio, I was blown away. It was a non-stop rocket ship ride from start to finish, or at least I thought so.
A lot of folks hate on this record and I understand why too. Dookie was just another tightly produced collection of pop-punk. It wasn't groundbreaking, but that didn't matter to 13 year old me. Presently I can't even stand Green Day. I was forced to hate them in 1997 thanks to the closing track on Nimrod. (You know which one I'm talking about.) Even so, none of that changes the way I feel about this record. With twenty years gone it still holds a special place for me. I wonder if I'll feel the same after another 20 years?