Watch Norah Jones and Green Day’s Billie Joe Armstrong Cover the Everly Brothers
Norah Jones and Green Day's Billie Joe Armstrong wowed audience members at a recent performance at the Bowery Electric in New York City by breaking out a cover of the Everly Brothers' "Roving Gambler."
Armstrong and Jones originally covered the tune for their joint Foreverly album. The project, released in 2013, is a reinterpretation of the Everly Brothers' 1958 record Songs Our Daddy Taught Us, on which the sibling duo covered songs such as Gene Autry's "Silver Haired Daddy of Mine" and Tex Ritter's "Long Time Gone."
"It all started with Stevie Wonder," Armstrong recalls to Stereogum. "We sang together with Stevie Wonder and his band and a whole bunch of people, that’s how Norah and I first met. Then … well, I got into the Everly Brothers’ record a couple years ago, and I thought it was just beautiful. I was listening to it every morning for a while off and on.
"I thought it would be cool to remake the record because I thought it was sort of an obscure thing and more people should know about it, but I really wanted to do it with a woman singing because I thought it would take on a different meaning — maybe broaden the meaning a little bit — as compared to hearing the songs being sung by the two brothers," he explains. "And so my wife said, 'Why don’t you get Norah Jones to do it?' and I was like, 'Well, I kinda know her.' Well, I mean, we had Stevie Wonder in common.
"And so I called her, and she said yes," Armstrong adds. "So it was kinda like a … well, I keep saying it was kinda like a blind date."
Foreverly isn't Armstrong's only foray into country music, though. He also performed "When Will I Be Loved," another Everly Brothers classic, with Miranda Lambert at the 2014 Grammy Awards. Their duet was in memory of Phil Everly, who passed away on Jan. 3, 2014, at the age of 74, due to complications from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.