Name:
Billie Joe Armstrong
Birth Date:
February 17, 1972
Birth Place:
Oakland, California, USA
Height:
5' 7''
Nationality:
American
Profession:
Actor, Musician
BIOGRAPHY
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Billie Joe Armstrong
Green Day's Vocalist

Background:

American rock musician Billie Joe Armstrong is famous as the lead singer, main songwriter and lead guitarist of the multiple Grammy Award winning punk rock band Green Day. The group has sold over 65 million albums worldwide, including 24.65 million in the United States alone. They enjoyed a breakthrough success with their first major label debut, “Dookie” (1994), which received Diamond certification from the RIAA. The group gained further success with “American Idiot” (2004), which marked the group's first No. 1 hit album. Green Day's latest studio album, “21st Century Breakdown” was released in May 2009 and became the group's next No. 1 hit album after “American Idiot.” Armstrong is also a guitarist and vocalist for the punk rock band Pinhead Gunpowder and sings lead vocals for Green Day's side project Foxboro Hot Tubs.

Armstrong has been married to wife  Adrienne Nesser since 1994. They have two sons together. Armstrong lives in Oakland and Newport Beach, California and also has a home near his wife's family in Minneapolis, Minnesota. He is close friends with Adam Levine, Matthew Fox,  Gerard Way and Jason Mewes. In addition to guitar, he also plays harmonica, mandolin, drums, piano and the saxophone.     

Drop Out

Childhood and Family:

Billie Joe Armstrong was born on February 17, 1972, in Oakland, California, to  Andrew Armstrong, a jazz musician and truck driver,  and Ollie Jackson, a waitress. He was raised in Rodeo, California. The youngest of six siblings, he has two older brothers, Alan and David, and three sisters, Anna, Marci and Hollie. His father died of esophageal cancer on September 10, 1982, when Billie was 10 years old. Shortly thereafter, her mother remarried. His hatred to his stepfather led to a then 14 year old Billie write his first song, “Why Do You Want Him?”

Billie showed a passion in music at an early age. At age 5, he recorded a song, “Look for Love,”    for a small local record company called Fiat Records. While attending Rodeo Elementary School, he met fellow student and future bandmate Mike Dirnt in the school's cafeteria in 1982 and they quickly brought together their love of music. By age 15, the two had formed the band Sweet Children. They performed their first gig at Rod's Hickory Pit, in which the two also worked as busboys. Billie dropped out of  Pinole High School just a day before his 18th birthday and midway through his senior year to focus on music.

Billie met Adrienne Nesser in 1990 at one of Green Day's early performances in Minneapolis, Minnesota. They married on July 2, 1994. The couple welcomed their first child, Joseph Marciano Armstrong, on  February 28, 1995. Their second child, Jakob Danger Armstrong, was born on September 12, 1998.   


American Idiot

Career:

Billie Joe Armstrong formed his first band, Sweet Children in 1987, along with former elementary school buddy Mike Dirnt. At first, they both played guitar, with John Kiffmeyer  (aka. Al Sobrante) on drums and Sean Hughes on bass. After Hughes leaving the band in 1988, Dirnt took over bass position, and they became a three piece band. They began adopting the name Green Day in 1989, allegedly due to their fondness for marijuana. The same year, they launched their first extended EP, “1,000 Hours” through Lookout!, Reprise. Their first full length studio album, “39/Smooth,” followed on April 13, 1990.  The band released the compilation album “1,039/Smoothed Out Slappy Hours,” which combined “39/Smooth,” “1,000 Hours” plus another EP called “Slappy” (1990), on July 1, 1991. On January 17, 1992, Green Day released the second studio album “Kerplunk,” with new drummer Tré Cool. The album enjoyed underground success. The group spent the most of 1992 and 1993 touring, and played numerous shows overseas in Europe.

After leaving Lookout!, Green Day signed to Reprise Records and released their first major label debut, “Dookie,” on February 1, 1994. Produced by Rob Cavallo and Green Day, the album was a commercial success worldwide. It peaked at No. 2 on the Billboard 200, No. 13 on the UK Albums chart and was a chart topper in Canada, Australia and New Zealand. It sold over 10 million units in the US alone and over 16 million copies worldwide. The album spawned five hit singles: “Longview” (#1 US Mod.), “Welcome to Paradise” (#7 US Mod.), “Basket Case” (#1 US Mod.), “When I Come Around” (#1 US Mod.)  and “She” (#5 US Mod.), all of which were written by Armstrong. “Dookie”  won the group a Grammy for Best Alternative Album and helped to propel Green Day into mainstream popularity. Green Day also was nominated for a 1995 Grammy for Best New Artist, while the singles “Longview”  and “Basket Case” receiving Grammy nominations for Best Hard Rock Performance  and Best Rock Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal, respectively.
 
In 1995, Green Day released a new song called “J.A.R.” for the soundtrack of the movie “Angus.” The song reached No. 1 on the Billboard Modern Rock Tracks in August 1995. The group's fourth studio album, “Insomniac,” followed on October 10, 1995. A second collaboration with producer Rob Cavallo, the album peaked at No. 2 on the Billboard 200 and went double platinum in the US. The album produced two top 10 hit single on the Billboard Modern Rock Tracks with “Geek Stink Breath” (#3) and “Brain Stew/Jaded” (#3).  “Walking Contradiction,” the fourth and final single from “Insomniac,” was nominated for a 1997 Grammy in the category of Best Short Form Music Video.     After the release of a first live album, “Foot in Mouth” (April 25, 1996(, Green Day resurfaced with the fifth studio album “Nimrod” on October 14, 1997. The album peaked at No. 10 on the Billboard 200 and was certified double platinum by the RIAA. It sold over 5 million worldwide. “Nimrod” contained two Modern Rock Tracks Top 10 hits: “Hitchin' a Ride” (#5) and “Good Riddance (Time of Your Life)” (#2).  Three years later, Armstrong and his bandmates released the follow up “Warning” on October 3, 2000. The album reached No. 4 on both the Billboard 200 and the UK Albums Chart and was certified platinum by the RIAA and gold by the BPI. The lead single “Minority” reached No. 1 on the Billboard Modern Rock Tracks in September 2000.  Also in 2000, Green Day received a Grammy nomination for Best Rock Instrumental Performance for “Espionage.”

Green Day released the compilation albums “International Superhits!” and “Shenanigans” in November 2001 and July 2002, respectively. The group did not release a new studio album until September 21, 2004 with “American Idiot.” Marking the group reunion with producer Rob Cavallo, the album achieved success worldwide. It charted in 27 countries and peaked at No.1 in 19 of them,  including the United States, the United Kingdom and Canada. The album sold over 6 million units in the US alone and over 15 million units worldwide. “American Idiot” won a 2005 Grammy for Best Rock Album and was nominated for the Album of the Year category. The title track reached No. 1 on the Billboard Modern Rock Tracks and No. 61 on the Billboard Hot 100. It received four Grammy nominations in the categories of Best Rock Song, Best Rock Vocal Performance by a Duo or Group, Best Music Video Short Form and Record of the Year. The album also generated three more hit singles with “Boulevard of Broken Dreams” (#1 US Alt.; #2 US Hot 100), which won a 2007 Grammy for Record of the Year, “Holiday” (#1 US Alt.; #19 US Hot 100) and “Wake Me Up When September Ends” (#2 US Alt.; #6 US Hot 100), a memorial song to his father.   

In  2006, Green Day collaborated with U2  to record a cover version of Skids' “The Saints Are Coming” for charitable purposes. Released on October 31, 2006, the song reached No. 51 on the Billboard Hot 100 and No. 22 on the  Billboard Modern Rock Tracks. It earned them a 2007 Grammy nomination  for Best Rock Vocal Performance by a Duo or Group.   Green Day went on to receive a 2008 Grammy nomination in the category of Best Rock Vocal Performance by a Duo or Group for a cover of John Lennon's “Working Class Hero,”  which the group recorded for the 2007 compilation album “Instant Karma: The Amnesty International Campaign to Save Darfur.”

Green Day's eight studio album, “21st Century Breakdown,” the band's second rock opera, following “American Idiot,” and their first album to be produced by Butch Vig, was released on May 15, 2009. The album reached No. 1 in many countries, including the US and the UK, and won the Best Rock Album at the 52nd Grammy Awards. The single “21 Guns” (# 22 US Hot 100; #3 US Alt.) was nominated for the Grammy Awards for Best Rock Song and Best Rock Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals. The album also spawned the No. 1 hit single “Know Your Enemy.”

In 2010, a stage adaptation of “American Idiot” debuted on Broadway to mostly positive reviews. The album “American Idiot: The Original Broadway Cast Recording” won a 2011 Grammy for  Best Musical Show Album. Green Day released a live album titled “Awesome as Fuck” on March 22, 2011. It peaked at No. 14 on the Billboard 200.

Apart from his work with Green Day,  Armstrong provides lead vocals and plays guitar for the punk rock band Pinhead Gunpowder, which was formed in East Bay, California, in 1990. Members of the band also include Aaron Cometbus (drums, lyrics), Bill Schneider (bass) and Jason White (guitar, vocals)., who replaced the original guitarist Mike Kirsch in 1994. The band has released two studio albums: “Carry the Banner” (1995) and “Goodbye Ellston Avenue” (1997), not to mention three compilation albums and several EPs. In 2007, Green Day had a side project called Foxboro Hot Tubs, on which  Armstrong also serves as lead vocalist. Their debut album, “Stop Drop and Roll!!!,” was released on April 22, 2008. It peaked at No. 21 in the US and No. 37 in the UK. The lead single “Mother Mary peaked at No. 16 on the Billboard Modern Rock and No. 137 on the UK Singles Chart. Between 2003 to 2005, Armstrong also sang for the new wave band The Network under the alias  Fink.   The band's debut album, “Money Money 2020” was released on September 30, 2003.
 
Armstrong also has assumed some acting gigs and voice overs. He provided the voice of Face in an episode of “ King of the Hill” called “The Man Who Shot Cane Skretteburg” (1997) and played the role of Ghostly Betting Man/Irv Kratser in an episode of “ Haunted” named “Simon Redux” (2002). His voice could be heard as Charlie in the 2006 animated movie “Live Freaky Die Freaky” and as Green Day in “The Simpsons Movie” (2007).

Awards:

Grammy: The Original Broadway Cast Recording, Best Musical Show Album, “ American Idiot,” 2011
Grammy: Best Rock Album, “21st Century Breakdown,” 2010
Grammy: Record of the Year, “Boulevard of Broken Dreams,” 2006  
Grammy: Best Rock Album, American Idiot, 2005    
Grammy: Best Alternative Album, Dookie, 1995  Show Less
Miranda Lambert & Billie Joe Armstrong: 'When I Will Be Loved' at the Grammys 2014
SP_COP - January 27, 2014 - www.justjared.com
Miranda Lambert dons a beautiful black dress while performing classic 1960s hit song “When I Will Be Loved” at the 2014 Grammy Awards held at the Staples Center on Sunday (January 26) in Los Angeles.T...
© Retna
Green Day's Billie Joe Armstrong and Norah Jones sing The Everly Brothers
SP_COP - November 29, 2013 - www.independent.co.uk
In one of the most unlikely pairings in pop , Billie Joe Armstrong from fluorescent pop punks Green Day has teamed up with Norah Jones, the winsome daughter of Ravi Shankar known for her honeyed voice...
© Retna
Green Day frontman Billie Joe Armstrong gets into acting
SP_COP - October 03, 2013 - www.film-news.co.uk
Billie Joe Armstrong of Green Day will star opposite Gossip Girl’s Leighton Meester in Like Sunday, Like Rain.Armstrong plays Meester’s boyfriend in the film that revolves around a 12-year-old music p...
© Retna
Billie Joe Armstrong Talks Substance Abuse In Post-Rehab Interview
SP_COP - February 27, 2013 - www.usmagazine.com
Billie Joe Armstrong is coming clean after entering rehab in September 2012. In a his first post-treatment interview, the Green Day frontman opens up to Rolling Stone about his alcohol and prescriptio...
© Retna
© Retna

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