The nominees were narrowed down and voted on, and on Tuesday, December 16, it was announced that Green Day had been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.  The three rapscallions known as Green Day–Billie Joe Armstrong, Mike Dirnt, and Tre Cool–will be honored alongside fellow rockers Lou Reed and Joan Jett and the Blackhearts in a ceremony on April 18th in Cleveland.

Over the span of a 27-year career that has had its ups and downs, the punk trio has earned the privilege to be held equal in the ranks of their predecessors before them.  What makes Green Day such an influential and lasting group of musicians, though?  It’s true they embody the very spirit of punk rock with their give ’em hell attitude and candid messages, tackling subjects from drugs, to masturbation to even politics.  For Green Day, nothing is off limits and everything will be criticized with a scrutinizing eye and gleeful, in your face approach.

One of the most valid arguments to be seen on Green Day’s continuing influence on music today stems from their popularity growth with the debut of their album Dookie, which brought punk rock into the mainstream.  That also meant it brought them under siege from die-hard punk fans who claimed they sold out.  As one fan points out though, what the trio merely did was bring punk back to the forefront at a time when it had been underground for so long.

Green Day’s mainstream success with a genre that had gone unnoticed for a time paved the way for other groups like Blink-182, The Offspring, Sum 41, and more, to experience the same kind of recognition while still staying true to the essence of punk rock, which is to go against the grain.  It’s basically a story of the underdog becoming the winner, and none embody that ideal more than these guys.