Aragon Ballroom in Chicago, IL
June 19, 2001
Other Acts:
The Living End
  • Recordings from this show can be found here
  • Mike: "This concert was the best concert by far. They opened with Nice Guys Finish Last. During the concert, Billie Joe put on a great show. He was crazy, squirting a huge squirt gun out at the crowd and keeping the audience involved. They brought up a drummer, bassist, and guitarist to play during Minority. Billie Joe made the guitar player bodysurf all the way down the crowd and up to the stage to play. There was a lot of moshpits and bodysurfing, which was great. Mike and Tre played great and so did Billie Joe, who is just hilarious. It was the best performance I've ever seen and made me so tired and dehydrated. The concert was a great experience I'll never forget."
  • "I was a Green Day virgin. Yup, that’s right, up until a few days ago this lonesome reviewer had never been to a Green Day concert. I always wondered what I was missing and now I know – a punk band that just likes to have fun. Green Day took the stage at about 9PM and I was a little worried because I thought the curfew rules might have been in effect meaning the show would end at about ten. 'Hmm, one hour for the headliner?' But it is Green Day, known for a bunch of really good three-minute songs, so I guess if they kept things going at a furious pace, well, they could knock out nearly twenty songs. Sadly I’m pretty sure they only played nineteen songs, but more than happily the curfew rules were no longer in effect or Green Day just didn’t care because it was nearly eleven before the trio let the youngin’s go home. And they let the youngin's go home happy. Opening with Nice Guys Finish Last, at least I’m pretty sure it was as I was busy taking my photos and forgot to jot it down, this was a show that spotlighted the many Green Day hits the radio fan may have forgotten, songs like Welcome to Paradise, She, Longview, and When I Come Around, along with some of their latest songs, Minority and Good Riddance (Time of Your Life), but also hit on non-radio songs like Church on Sunday and 2000 Light Years Away that the die-hard fans knew and loved. But what was maybe even more important than the set-list variety was that the boys of Green Day know the show is just as much about having fun, and it sure looked like they haven’t gotten tired of playing in front of their fans. And why do I say this? Well, because Billie Joe was just the goofball I hoped he would be. He jumped on monitors; he knew all of the arm movements to bring the crowd to a frenzy and then hush to a whisper; he knew when the crowd would know the words and let them sing, and he knew when to help them out; he baptized the crowd with bottles of water and shot them with a giant water gun; he busted on Limp Bizkit and President Bush; he called himself 'Fuckface'; and maybe most of all, at about 9:30, around the time of Hitchin’ A Ride, I think, Billie proclaimed that the next hour and a half would be one big, fucking orgasm. I can’t say I came, and I guess I didn’t really breathe hard either, but it sure was great seeing three dudes making so much sound that the addition of the sax and trumpet dudes weren’t needed, they just added to things. And what else was I impressed with? Well, the band brought up three dudes from the audience to play a song. Billie asked for a drummer and he got a drummer. Billie asked for a bass player and he got a bass player. And then a dude had a sign that read, 'I play guitar', or at least something close to that, and Billie made the dude bodysurf to the back of the crowd and then to the stage if he wanted to play. I have to say I didn’t know what song it was, but our three lucky contestants did much better than I thought they would. It almost looked like Billie Joe slipped one of the dudes the tongue, Billie donned the trio the Chicago Shitheads, and our new trio had to stagedive back into the crowd, even the bass dude who supposedly lost his dinner off to the side of the stage. There are things you don’t see at concerts much these days, and this definitely is one of them."
  • "I am 24 years old and I absolutely love Green Day, this is how their rock show at the Aragon Ballroom in Chicago went down. A few things are certain when entering the grasp of Green Day in the arena form. The boys always take two minute explosive songs and turn them into ten-minute instrumental 'fun time' segments for Billie Joe to act like the charming clown he is, igniting the sold out crowd with 'hey-oh's' and various orchestrated Simon Says bits. Tre Cool will always toss his drumsticks for a fresh pair after every song, sometimes in the middle of one if he feels punk enough. A teenage boy, his green-haired friend, and a proud and slightly frightened set of parents with earplugs will always be the coolest people at the show. Since the tickets were $26.00 a pop on a school night, the kids and their parents are way cooler than you think. Flashing red lights triggered the bandís entrance as they ripped into Nice Guys Finish Last, the lead single from the crew's Nimrod album. Mike Durnt slapped his bass with a hairless head, as Billie Joe strummed with a red guitar, his precious BJ axe was nowhere to be found. Castaway came in second from the latest effort Warning, which instigated the first of many Billie Joe orchestrated crowd sing-alongs. Church on Sunday came in next, with help from a second guitarist (later named Jason White) and a saxophone player, which is something that I have never seen before at a GD show. We all knew Longview from the breakthrough Dookie record was coming and as Billie came out dawning a wolf mask the East Bay idols ripped into their most famous song to date. Right before the first chorus struck, a second Green Day banner dropped from the roof covering the first, as 'Bite my lip and close my eyes' was heard from every mouth in the audience. Welcome To Paradise, Hitchin A Ride, then Brain Stew from Insomniac were launched, as Billie Joe took time to super soak the audience as he stretched his cherished 3 minute bursts into clock eating numbers. Jaded came in as the extension of Brain Stew, with help from the second guitarist Jason White as he hammered away leaving Billie Joe to run and sing with just a microphone. The much anticipated request lines opened up making it that much more exciting for fans like me who have seen the trio many times to possibly fall victim to older gems. 2,000 Light Years Away from 1992's Lookout released Kerplunk treasure brought back many joyful memories as did the obligatory Green Day cover of Operation Ivy's Knowledge which trickled in next. GD have played the song so much, and took it from a band that broke up to avoid fame, that Billie now claimed that the song belonged to him. Operation Ivy was Tim Armstrong from Rancid's first band, and Billie Joe's first introduction to punk rock. The coolest part of the evening came during the everlasting bridge of Knowledge, when Billie asked for three people to come on stage to perform a make shift song right then and there. I have seen them do this with one kid and BJ's guitar, but an entire band? After finding three cats that could actually play the respected instruments, the three bright-eyed boys closed out Knowledge and experienced the best night of their performing lives. The drummer ruled as he held up his right arm as he banged with his left, the guitar player was all right but the bass player THREW UP immediately after the song. Billie made all of the boys stage dive to get back into the crowd, but the bass player was still on the side blowing chunks. After the brought his dinner back up, the crowd chanted the boy's name as he jumped back into the audience. The band was dubbed the Chicago Shitheads, look for their forthcoming release soon on a very major label. A pair of Dookie tracks brought the crowd back to life with Basket Case followed by She. Sporting a king's crown, Billie launched into King For A Day, then into Waiting from the Warning album, which was getting a ton of great response from the crowd, as I thought this album slipped under the radar for some reason. Serves me right for questioning the teenage market. Minority was the final song before the crew left the stage for the evening, only to return seconds later for their encore. Time Of Your Life left Billie on the stage plugged in and all by himself. Warning came next followed by the terminal-paced Platypus (I Hate You) which helped drop the bandís third banner of the evening, this time an '80s Judas Priest-style Green Day logo which looked so cool. When I Come Around looked like the closer, as the third banner dropped, the glitter and confetti dripped from the ceiling and Tre knocked his kit over and Mike assisted by javelin tossing his bass into the chaos. But alas the Green Daze kept on, this time with a lovely version of Warning's last track Macy's Day Parade, which proved to be the final song of the evening. The fellas left the stage for a couple of seconds, before Billie Joe came back on only to knock over Tre's cymbals. Green Day have been playing gigs and making records since their early teens, dating back to almost fifteen years. I swear on the holy rock bible, that they are one of the tightest bands that I have ever seen, and I am grateful for the music that they have provided out ears. And to all of the haters, Green Day never sold out ñ they just sold records."
Photos from Chicago, IL
Send your own photos for this show to
1. Nice Guys Finish Last
2. Castaway
3. Church On Sunday
4. Longview
5. Welcome To Paradise
6. Hitchin' A Ride
7. Brain Stew
8. Jaded
9. 2,000 Light Years Away
10. Knowledge (Operation Ivy cover)
11. Basket Case
12. She
13. King For A Day
14. Waiting
15. Minority
16. Good Riddance (Time Of Your Life)
17. Warning
18. Platypus (I Hate You)
19. When I Come Around
20. Macy's Day Parade
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January 2023
Happening this month:
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Jan 17:
Kerplunk was released 31 years ago.