- 03:48 PM, Mar 22
American punk rock band Green Day story started out in Rodeo, California, when 14-year-old childhood friends Billie Joe Armstrong and Mike Dirnt formed their first band Sweet Children. In the newly-born band Joe was on lead vocals and guitar, whereas Mike on bass and backing vocals. By 1989, the group recruited drummer John Kiftmeyer and changed their name to Green Day after one of their songs. The original named Green Day was actually a bay area term for a day that you would just sit around and smoke pot the whole day.
In the same year the band independently released their first EP "1,000 Hours" which was well received in the punk scene. Soon afterward in 1990 the band signed a contract with independent label Lookout! Records, which was run by Larry Livermore, and released their debut album "1,039/Smoothed Out Slappy Hour" within that year.
Shortly after the release of "1,039/Smoothed Out Slappy Hour", Kiftmeyer announced he was going to college and suggested former drum tutor Tre Cool to replace his position as the band's drummer. Later in the early 90s, Green Day continued touring in local areas, writing and recording their 2nd album "Kerplunk", released in January 1992. Supported by tour ranging as far a field as the United Kingdom, Germany, Spain, Italy, Holland, Poland, and the Czech Republic, this album had become a hit, attracted major record labels to sign the band up, among which they decided to sign with Reprise Records.
And then "Dookie", Green Day's major label debut was released in the spring of 1994 and became a mainstream hit thanks to the relentless touring and somewhat surprising MTV support for its initial single "Longview." Through out the summer, "Dookie" continued to gain momentum with its second single "Basket Case" spending five weeks on the top of the American modern rock charts. At the end of the summer, the band stole the show at Woodstock '94, which automatically lifted up the sales of "Dookie".
Following the success of "Dookie" second single, its fourth single "When I Come Around" also stayed at number one in the modern rock charts in early 1995 for seven weeks, lifting the album sales over five million copies in the U.S. alone. Eventually, this success would definitely bring "Dookie" to top eight million records sold in America, and selling over eleven million copies internationally. Adjacent to this album commercial success, Green Day