Good Charlotte's Benji and Joel Madden Compare Favorite Family Traditions & Their Most Underrated Songs


Identical twin brothers and Good Charlotte bandmates Benji and Joel Madden, 39, are preparing to release their band’s seventh album, Generation Rx, out Sept. 14 on MDDN/BMG. Though the two have been in the same band for more than 20 years and now live down the street from each other — oh, and they have the same face — Benji insists that they're actually quite different people.

"We have a completely different sense humor, completely different take on things … but where we meet in the middle is on things like business and creative," Benji says. "I think that's what's made being in a band together, creating together, so easy. There's definitely like a ying-yang kind vibe."

Favorite Part About Being a Twin

Joel: I like that if I ever needed to leave the country, I could just take his passport and I could probably have a good day or two jump on everyone.
Benji: I'm not that much a psycho. I think the best thing is like you've just got a partner on everything. You just have a built in partner to take on the world with and that definitely makes things easier.

Favorite Family Tradition

Joel: We go back to Maryland every summer. Basically any time in summer when crabs are in season and you can go to a baseball game, and just kind hang in Maryland. It's super low-key and nice.
Benji: We do family dinner every weekend on Sundays. That's the best way to start the week or end the week, however you want to see that.

How Many Tattoos You Have

Joel: I probably have like 70 percent my body covered. I have tattoos for my wife and kids on my hands — like little symbols and dates, special dates and things like that.
Benji: I would have to go with maybe 80 or 90 percent my body is covered. I actually don't have very much space left, but I don't know how many I have. When I got married, I got my wife's name on my chest. That one means a lot to me, obviously, so that's probably my favorite — my most meaningful one for sure.

Go-to Karaoke Song

Joel: I would say Meat Loaf, "I'd Do Anything for Love (But I Won't Do That)." It's a big, epic song. I get to showcase my vocal range. And it’s dramatic. I love a little drama.
Benji: Mine would be "Mary Jane's Last Dance," Tom Petty.  It’s just right in my wheelhouse. That song is a sure shot for me.

Most Underrated Good Charlotte Song

Joel: "Emotionless" on 2002's] The Young and The Hopeless. That was a really good, classic GC song that sometimes goes overlooked.
Benji: “‘Harlow’s Song,’ on 2010’s] Cardiology. It was a song Joel wrote for his daughter when she was born. That’s one the best songs we’ve ever done.

Fill in the Blank: Good Charlotte is…

Joel: My life. You can hear where I'm at in each part my life on each record. At this point, besides my family, it's the most constant thing that's been in my life.
Benji: Nice to have around. We're nice enough. Nice band, positive. That sounds like a true statement. Good Charlotte is nice to have around.

A version this article originally appeared in the Aug. 25 issue Billboard.