Green Day singer/songwriter/guitarist Billy Joe Armstrong
thought he and a buddy were just dropping in at San Francisco's Bottom of the
Hill last Saturday (February 17) for a quiet drink or two. But when the duo
entered the club and looked around, Armstrong realized something was amiss.
Maybe it was those familiar faces--all 200 of them. "At first Billy was
completely in a state of shock," said a source who attended the surprise party
held to celebrate the punk rocker's 25th birthday. "Imagine walking into a club
with a friend to get a drink and all of a sudden you realize you know everyone
there and they all start singing 'Happy Birthday.' It was a shock." No sweat.
Armstrong adjusted to the situation quickly enough. "Once he got over the
surprise of it, he was completely relaxed," said our source.
performed: Pansy Division (with Riverdales' drummer Dan Sullivan sitting in at
one point), the retro-cool Hi-Fives and the Criminals. The party, held two days
before Armstrong's Feb. 19 birthday, was the work of Armstrong's wife Adrienne,
who had been planning it for months.
Old and new friends and associates
including Armstrong's two Green Day bandmates (Tre Cool and Mike Dirnt), Green
Day producer Rob Cavallo and solo artist Penelope Houston (once leader of the
Avengers), who Armstrong just finished producing. "There were lots of things
that looked like cigars but didn't smell like cigars," noted our source. "A
wall of hors d'oeuvres. And an old friend of Billy's jumped out of a giant cake
and hugged him."
The night before, Green Day had performed at an East Bay
warehouse party, and Armstrong had just finished mixing the three songs he
produced (and played guitar on) for Houston. Green Day expect to enter the
studio in late March with Cavallo (he produced both Dookie and