Green Day (1989-)
Billie Joe Armstrong (vocals, guitar)
Mike Dirnt (Michael Pritchard) (bass)
Tre Cool (Frank Edwin Wright III) (drums)
Artistfacts®: You can leave comments about the artist/band at the bottom of the page.
Champions of East Bay Punk-Pop, Green Day's mid-'90s success helped bring Punk briefly to the forefront of the music industry.
Green Day were one of the latter-day punk bands to emerge from the 924 Gilman Street club scene in Berkeley, California.
Billie Joe recorded and released his first single "Looking For Love" at the age of 5 on Fiat records. The first song he wrote and then recorded was "Why Do You Want Him?" when he was 12. (thanks, MsZacEfron - Chicago, IL and dara - charlotte, NC)
They once played at a high school party with the band The Lookouts in a remote mountain location near Willits, California. Only 5 kids showed up for the party and there was no electricity in the house, so Sweet Children had to play using a generator and candlelight, but they played, as Lookouts singer/guitarist Larry Livermore put it, "As if they were the Beatles at Shea Stadium."
The band's name comes from a term referring to a day spent smoking pot, hanging around, and doing absolutely nothing. The band were joint-smokers since puberty and Billie Joe got his nickname, "Two Dollar Bill," from selling joints at that price at his high school. It is widely reported that when the boys went to their high school principal to say that they were dropping out to become a full-time band the principal observed that "would be a green day in hell" before they amounted to anything. (thanks to Pravin for all above - http://paul.rutgers.edu/~spravin
At age 12, Tre Cool became a member of the band The Lookouts. Their album attracted some attention, and Tre began performing at an early age at 924 Gilman Street. In 1987, Armstrong and Dirnt formed The Sweet Children with Armstrong on lead vocals and guitar and Dirnt on bass and backing vocals. They began playing in 1988 at Rod's Hickory Pit in Rodeo, California. In 1989, the Children renamed themselves Green Day, after their first semi-successful song. They soon added Al Sobrante (born John Kiftmeyer), and went looking for a record deal.
Green Day signed with Lookout Records in 1989 and released their first EP, 1,000 Hours And Slappy in 1990. The next year, they produced the album 39/Smooth and released it in 1991. (The EPs would eventually be re-released on one CD as 1039 Smoothed Out Slappy Hours). Al Sobrante left the band at this point, and was replaced by Tre. Green Day kicked off a national tour the day after Dirnt graduated from high school in 1990, then returned to the studio to produce their second album Kerplunk in 1992. The group signed with Reprise Records in April 1993 and released Dookie in February 1994.
They played both Lollapalooza and Woodstock 1994. At their Woodstock gig, a mud fight broke out between the band and the audience. The audience won - Dirnt ended up losing his front teeth. (thanks, Chrissy for above 3)
Mike Dirnt was adopted at a young age. His adopted parents got divorced when he was young.
Billie Joe's father died of cancer when Billie was 10 years old. Before he died, he gave Billie Joe his first guitar. He named her Blue and now has many replicas of it. (thanks, ashy - Yonkers, NY, for above 2)
Billie Joe Armstrong is a playable character in the skateboarding game Tony Hawk's American Wasteland. The game also includes numerous Marvel characters. (thanks, alex - Glendale, AZ)
Armstrong married Adrienne Nesser in 1994, shortly after Dookie was released. They have 2 children, Jacob and Joesph. Tre Cool has been married twice, and divorced twice, and has 2 children, Frankito and Ramone. Mike Dirnt also has a daughter, Estelle.
Every member in Green Day has tattoos, but they all have "E.B.P.M." somewhere on their bodies, meaning "East Bay Punk Mafia." (thanks, Holiday - oakland, CA, for above 2)
Other bands Billie Joe was in were Pinhead Gunpowder, Blatz, Goodbye Harry and Corrupted Morals and Rancid. Other instruments he plays are the drums, harmonica, guitar and the mandolin.
Mike was good friends with Billie Joe since they were 10. They met in fifth grade in the school cafeteria, and he used to go over to Billie Joe's house to play guitar. He later rented a room in Billie's house. Mike got good grades in school, and completed High School. Mike switched to bass, and in 1986, the two renamed their band Green Day. (thanks, korey - wayne, NJ, for above 2)
In the film Freaky Friday the daughter Anna (played by Lindsay Lohan) has a Green Day poster in her room.
During soundcheck, Billie Joe likes to practice on the drums, and Tre likes to play frisbee with the other crew members while they are riding skateboards. Tre also gives away a pair of drumsticks to a random person watching the soundcheck.
Tre is the godfather of Billie Joe's kids. (thanks, maan - quebeck, Canada, for above 3)
Billie Joe's hair is naturally reddish brown. If you've seen him with it dyed, you know he's no-holds-barred: blue, red, green, orange, and bright yellow are regularly rotated. (thanks, MsZacEfron - Chicago, IL)
Billie Joe's cat, Zero, died in a washing machine accident.
Armstrong is double jointed in his elbows.
Dirnt worked as a cook before Green Day became famous.
Armstrong is the youngest of 6 children.
The first instrument Tre played was violin when he was 9 years old. (thanks, Bertrand - Paris, France, for above 5)
This Kentucky singer/songwriter's hits include "She Couldn't Change Me" (recorded by Montgomery Gentry) and "It Ain't Easy Being Me."
As a 5-year-old, Brandi was writing lyrics to instrumental versions lullabies. She still puts her heart into her songs, including the one Elton John sings on.
Eric Kretz of Stone Temple Pilots
The STP drummer talks about how they write their songs, and how the process is different now that Chester Bennington has replaced Scott Weiland.