Good Charlotte

Members: Joel Madden, Benji Madden, Billy Martin, Paul Thomas

Active: 1996-present


Good Charlotte's frontmen, identical twins Joel and Benji Madden, were born on March 11, 1979 to a lower middle class family in the ghetto of Waldorf, Maryland. Their father left the family when the twins were 16 years old, causing financial hardship to the twins, their mother, older brother, and older sister. Benji and Joel cite their older brother Josh Madden for introducing them to punk rock music by bands such as Rancid and Social Distortion. After attending a Beastie Boys concert at the age of 16, Benji and Joel decided to start their very own band, although Joel had never sung before, and Benji had never played guitar. They started Good Charlotte in 1996 when they recruited childhood friends Paul Thomas (bass) and Aaron Escolopio (drums). They soon moved to Annapolis, Maryland and met Billy Martin, through a mutual interest in the band Silverchair.

After releasing an EP, entitled Another EP, in 1999, Good Charlotte released their first self-titled album in 2000, which was not a huge commercial success. Singles that were released from that album include "Little Things" and "Motivation Proclamation," and "Festival Song".

Aaron was the drummer in their debut album, Good Charlotte, before leaving the band in early 2001 to join the band Wakefield with his brother, Ryan. He was replaced with Dusty, who was just a temporary drummer, who had left the band before the recording of their second album, The Young & the Hopeless. As a result, veteran professional studio drummer Josh Freese plays for that album.

2002's The Young And The Hopeless was much more popular, and marked the bands emergence into mainstream music. The single that made them famous, titled "Lifestyles of the Rich and the Famous", topped charts around the globe. Singles that followed from that album included "The Anthem" ,"Girls and Boys", "Hold On" and "The Young and The Hopeless". "The Young and the Hopeless" received a 3x-platinum certification from the RIAA, landing the band on Saturday Night Live, the covers of Rolling Stone and Alternative Press, a two page feature in the New York Times, and spots on CNN and The Today Show. Good Charlotte were also hugely popular on MTV, where the Madden Brothers once served as hosts on the late night music video show "All Things Rock." Their music videos were favorites on both MTV and MTV2, with "The Anthem" going on to receive the "Viewers Choice Award" on MTV's 2003 Video Music Awards.

Chris Wilson was the band's drummer for their third album, The Chronicles of Life and Death, which was released in 2004. The singles released from that album include "Predictable", "I Just Wanna Live", "We Believe" and "The Chronicles of Life and Death". This album was considered a departure from their previous 2 albums. In May 2005, Chris left the band for personal health reasons[1].

Today, through non-stop touring and wide publicity, Good Charlotte has built a huge fanbase from all four corners of the globe.

Their most recent "Noise to the World Tour" with Simple Plan featured Dean Butterworth, who has previously played with Morrissey, as the band's current temporary drummer.


The trademarks of identical twins Joel and Benji Madden are that they are both fully tattooed. Benji has more tattoos with heavy make-up on his face. Both of them wear make-up and have heavily black-dyed hair. Benji's looks can easily be distinguished by his quadruple piercings on is lip and he's more chubby compared to Joel. Benji usually wears his trademark bandanna and netcap during performing. Paul is the big guy in the group who possesses a white-dyed part on his hair which made him comfortable whenever he does his trademark banging of the head when playing the bass guitar. Billy also has numerous tattoos on his skinny body and usually wears heavy black eyeliner make-up with colors pink and blue on his eyebrow and eylashes. He also possesses heavily black-dyed hair like the Madden twins.

The trademark looks of identical twins, Benji and Joel, are that they have their hair dyed in different colors and most often the color Black. When the band's first album came out, Benji sported mini liberty spikes and had a spot of hot pink while the rest of his hair black. Benji is frequently changing his hair styles and colors. He used to have a pale pink mohawk and leopard spots in his hair. Currently, his hair is jet black with the sides kinda shaven and some hair in his right eye [but he mostly wears either a bandana or a hat]. His make up includes having eyeliner tears down his face. But sometimes he goes for the natural look. Benji also has a large amount of piercings. His nose used to be pierced, but he took the ring out. He now has his lip pierced 4 times, and his ears pierced. Benji also casually wears punk rock band shirts and a pair of black jeans. Joel on the other hand, is the laid back twin and not as brave when it comes to his hair. He goes for the black with the fauxhawk. When GC's 2nd album, The Young And The Hopeless, was reaching the top of the charts, Joel colored his fauxhawk red. At this moment, he still has the 'hawk, but its all black. Joel didn't wear make up until their 3rd album, The Chronicles Of Life And Death, came out. Now he is seen with smudgy, dark lined eyes. Billy Martin's hair has been dyed, cut, short, long... you name it. Back when Billy was in high school, he had shoulder length dreadlocks, and his affinity for wearing make up to school didn't help him fit in. When Billy decided to cut his dreads off, they found part of a dorito in them. Right around the year 2002, Billy had chin length bleach-blonde hair. He also has a large amount of piercings. He has his eyebrow pierced, his labret pierced, his nose pierced, and his ears gauged. Billy tends to wear smudged black or red eyeliner. In the single 'Predictable' he has eyeliner tears down his face. Sometimes though, he doesn't wear any make up at all. Billy's hair is currently black and purple. He always wears a thin, black ribbon around his neck, and he tends to wear some of his clothing line, Level 27. Paul tends to wear both of Benji and Joel's and Billy's clothing lines, Made and as mentioned above, Level 27. His present hair color is black with a patch of hair blonde, while his black hair is shorter than the blonde piece.


Good Charlotte recorded a theme song for radio talk show host Glenn Beck. However, during the 2004 Presidential election, the band refused the show rights to the song over political differences. Beck then tried to purchase the song, not willing to let political differences get in the way of business (taking into account how conservative talker Sean Hannity uses liberal Bruce Hornsby's music as an example), but Good Charlotte refused outright. Beck has since complained that, because of Good Charlotte, he currently has no theme song.


2000 - Good Charlotte

2002 - The Young and the Hopeless

2004 - The Chronicles of Life and Death



Little Things

Motivation Proclamation

Festival Song


2002 - Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous

2003 - Girls and Boys

2003 - The Anthem

2003 - The Young and the Hopeless/Hold On

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