When I was 17, my favourite band was Green Day, thanks in whole to a mix tape of Green Day songs a friend made me. I would listen to Nimrod incessantly. I went to see them in a bunch of giant venues, like Wembley, because by this time they were already huge. They had just released Warning and in another year or so would release International Superhits. In 2002, after a London show, my friends and I hung around the back of Wembley Arena, hoping to meet the band. A handful of similarly desperate kids were knocking about, hassling the security guards. After about half an hour and just as we were deciding to go home, Tre Cool appeared wearing a fur coat, a deer hunter and smoking a pipe. We all scrambled for something on which he could scribble his name. I chose the back of a receipt, which I tried to keep forever but which has been long since lost (I probably forgot what it was and used it for gum). My friend chose her passport. Rendering it immediately void and useless. But she'll tell you it was worth it.
This week's mixtape, in tribute to Green Day announcing a last minute show in London and playing a secret show at Reading Festival (even though it's not a secret because everybody knows about it), and in tribute to my inner 17 year old, is nothing but Green Day. But er - the good stuff. Before the 20 minute hand clapping routines (although there is one of those in here somewhere) and big budget pyrotechnics. And before International Superhits. Because nothing after that really counts.
80, Live in Wigan, UK (1991)