Billie Joe (Guitar, vocals)
Amps & Cabinets:
Picks and strings:
Marshall 100 W 1959 SLP (Billie's main amp)
Fender Bassman ampHiwatt amp
Fender Jag-stang Guild acoustic guitar
Gibson Classic Series ES-135 Gibson Classic Series ES-335
This Marshall amp had been modified in Los Angeles to record the album "Dookie" and belongs to their producer Rob Cavallo).
This amp was called "Dookie" and Jerry Finn also used this amp to record the Rancid's album "And Out Come The Wolves".
When Green Day went on tour, Billie had a clone amp made to copy the sound of the "dookie amp". That amp is called the "Pete" amp. (if you look at footage from Woodstock '94 you can see that it has"Pete" spray painted on it.)
For "Insomniac" Billie decided he wanted a little chunkier sound, so he played through two amps at the same time. One was the "Dookie" amp, and one was a new modified Marshall that Rob had gotten that we called the "Meat" amp.
On "nimrod" Billie used a lot of guitars and different amps, but at live shows he is still using his main guitar "blue" plugged on the modified amp.(In some new songs, he uses
different guitars, but it's not too important...)
On an interesting side note, before the making of "Insomniac" Billie had Fernandes make him a copy of "blue", 'cause he wanted to have a backup guitar. When they sent it over he started playing it in order to get used to it. After a couple of weeks he decided it didn't feel right and smashed it to pieces. There's just nothing that can match the feel of his beloved "blue"!
The main thing to remember about Billie's sound is that 70% of it comes from the way he plays. If you came to the studio and played "blue", his favorite guitar, you still would not sound anything like him. His style is truly unique.
From Guitar World: "I looked at my guitar playing as more as a tool this time (on "Nimrod"). I didn't want to go outside of what I can do, but I also didn't want to keep only playing powder chords. I wanted to noodle around a bit and write these nice little leads and just add stuff that made sense to the song. I'm more of a rythm player than a lead player. The stuff that I do play that is more like a solo is a rythmic kind of thing that blends in with the melody. I'm just into getting a good powerful sound. Whatever benefits the song is what I try to play. Mike is a great bass player and Tre's a great drummer, and it's about letting them play. I'm more of a back-up. We are a very tight unit, and I work with them to enhance the song rather than go off on long, pretentious guitar solos. I'm not a guitar player's guitar player. I'm a songwriter. I come from that Pete Townshend tradition: let the song take it's course and build a sound around it. It's hard for me to talk about. One of my limitations is that it's hard for me to talk about guitar playing. I just do what I am capable of, which is not much."
Main guitar is a Fernandes Stratocaster copy he calls "blue". On "nimrod" he also used some Gibson's, some old Les Pauls, an ES-335, and ES-135 and a Fender Jaguar. He also made a guitar he call's "Frankenstein" because it is a combination of several different parts purchased at a Fender shop.
Mainly plays through a modified Marshall amp. On "nimrod" he used a Fender Bassman, a Hiwatt, and a Leslie. The amp he used on "Dookie" is most commenly reffered to as the "Pete"' amp and can be seen most at the Woodstock '94 concert, it has "Pete" written across it.
When asked about what brand his accoustic guitar is, Billie says: "I don't know, one with strings and a whole in the middle!"
Billie say's a lot of his sound comes from strumming. "I use my thumb. It's that half-pick and half-thumb that gives it that thwack. Also, I don't play with my wrist, I play with my shoulder and hit it really hard."
Amps & Cabinets:
Picks and strings:
Mesa/Boogie "Bassis M-2000" amp
Some Mesa/Boogie bass cabinets
Gibson G-3 Bass / Fender American Standard Precision Bass / Fender '62 Vintage Precision Bass
From Guitar World: "On this record (Nimrod), I used Precision basses because my old Gibson G-3 didn't sound good with the new songs. I used a '66 and '69; they have a real warmth on the low end. For this record I knew we weren't going for the huge guitar sound; this gave me more room to get in there. I needed to play a real punchy bass on the old records because the guitar frequencies where everywhere and I needed to get right in the middle. I recorded Dookie with a Precision bass too. I use Mesa/Boogie amps, MB 2000's. They're half-tube and half-solid state. I wanted to custom-make my own sound , and Mesa/Boogie was really willing to work with me. They made me 6x10" cabinets, and we put those on top of a 1x18". I think I'm nailing it. I have an
MB 2000 running each one of my 6x10" cabinets and then a MB 2000 running both of my 18's."
Tré Cool (Drums)
Tré Cool signature Slingerland's "Spitfire" drumkit
Zildjian 19" K Dark Thin Crash Zildjian 20" A Medium Ride
Zildjian 22" K Heavy Ride Zildjian 14" K Med. Top Hi-hat and 14" K Med. Heavy Bottom
12 - Zildjian Super 5B drumsticks
Tré cymbal disposition
7th July 1998:
To celebrate its 70th anniversary, Slingerland Drum Company will debut it's Tre Cool Signature Spitfire drum kit at Summer NAMM '98, the semi-annual trade show of music merchants to be held in Nashville Friday through Sunday, July 10 - 11. "Slingerland-they really make the best drums," the drummer for multiplatinum hitmakers Green Day said. "They're making a Tre Cool signature kit for me, which I'm totally psyched about. It's gonna be called the Spitfire. . . the drums will sound great."
"The main thing is that they're inexpensive ($949 suggested retail price)," he said. I wouldn't have done it at all if a set didn't sell for under $1,000. I'm not gonna tell a kid to go out and play some over-priced stuff. I can't hang with that," he said. "That's my main interest-a drum kit that kids can afford to buy."
Manufactured to Tre Cool's specifications, the Tre Cool Signature Series Spitfire kit features an 11x14 mounted tom, a 16x16 floor tom, and a 16x22 bass drum, all finished in a unique, custom "Cool" green finish, along with a 6 1/2x14 chrome snare. All kits come complete with Tre Cool Signature drumheads, a custom black Tre Cool Signature logo bass drum head, as well as a heavy-duty, chain-drive bass drum pedal, and doubled-braced snare, cymbal and hi-hat stands. Six-ply shells with heavy-duty tom mounts, bass drum spurs, and floor to legs make the Slingerland Tre Cool Signature Spitfire kit rugged and durable.