It's Billie Joe Armstrong's birthday! Throughout the lifespan of Green Day, Billie Joe has reach legend status both as a musician but also a personality, yet they are not the only band he has played some sort of role in. So to celebrate such a special day, here are all of the projects he has been involved in over the years.
Forming in 1991, Pinhead Gunpowder have been releasing music in the same timeline as Green Day. Bringing Billie Joe into the fold in its second incarnation and also featuring long time band touring guitarist Jason White, the band's deliciously scrappy sound has been pleasing the underground ever since. Last releasing music in 2008 and last playing a show in 2010, who knows what the future may hold for this longstanding and utterly infectious project.
FOXBORO HOT TUBS
Shrouded in mystery and formed simply from the idea of the "love to play music and be spontaneous, and after a few late-night jams and a few too many bottles of wine, we were inspired to record some rockin' eight-track recordings", Foxboro Hot Tubs is more or less Green Day's garage rock alter ego. Going under the name Reverend Strychnine Twitch, Billie Joe fronts the troop and delivers plenty of rip-roaring punk rock in the process.
Punk-rock is all well and good, but sometimes you need a change of pace. Back in 2003, Green Day secretly worked on a new wave project alongside penning the usual day job, and the results were as baffling and mysterious as one would expect. Denying all involvement in the band from the release of their debut album 'Money Money 2020' in 2003 and continuing that mystery with the follow up 'Money Money 2020 Part II: We Told Ya So!' in December last year, if you're looking for an off-kilter and brilliantly bizarre departure from the norm then look no further.
A collaboration birthed from a chance encounter while playing with Stevie Wonder and a love for the Everley Brothers, Billie Joe and Norah Jones joined forces back in 2013. A reinterpretation of their 1958 album 'Songs Our Daddy Taught Us', which in turn is a collection of traditional songs that Everly Brothers put their own spin on, the duo put their own beautiful twist onto things in a way that no-one expected.
Billie Joe sure does love a family affair. Forming a band with his family and releasing an EP is in many ways the dream that most musicians have at one point in their career, but this was made a reality for the Armstrongs back in 2011. As loose and snotty as punk-rock can possibly be, the self-titled effort still to this day serves as a moment of carefree fun.
MATT GROCOTT & THE SHRIVES
Working alongside young and upcoming talent is something that Billie Joe has always prided himself on. Back in 2014, he backed that sentiment up when he took then unknown band Matt Grocott & The Shrives out of Grantham and into Jingletown Studios in California where he recorded their debut album with them. He also picked up the bass and did a bit of plucking too.
One of the latest of Billie Joe's side projects is probably his most pure and simple. Fast, frantic and melodic as it can get, The Longshot takes things back to the basement and sees our man taking care of guitar, bass, drums AND vocals. Ain't no rest for the brilliant.
NO FUN MONDAYS
2020 sure took us all by surprise, didn't it? Well, back when quarantine kicked in for the first time in March, Billie Joe took it upon himself to record and release a cover of a track every week until we were all allowed out again. What this turned into was not just a fascinating insight into some of Billie's biggest loves and influences but also a time capsule of sorts of one of the most unique periods in living memory in musical form.