meta-scriptGet Amped For When We Were Young 2023: Sum 41's Deryck Whibley's Favorite Emo Songs By Fellow Performers | GRAMMY.com
Get Amped For When We Were Young 2023: Sum 41's Deryck Whibley's Favorite Emo Songs By Fellow Performers
Deryck Whibley performs in 2023.

Photo: Richard Thigpen

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Get Amped For When We Were Young 2023: Sum 41's Deryck Whibley's Favorite Emo Songs By Fellow Performers

Ahead of Sum 41's appearance at When We Were Young Festival in Las Vegas on Oct. 21 and 22, lead singer Deryck Whibley curated a playlist of tracks from Blink-182, KennyHoopla, Good Charlotte and more.

GRAMMYs/Oct 20, 2023 - 07:30 pm

For the second year in a row, pop-punk is taking over Las Vegas. The When We Were Young Festival is bringing another slew of emo and pop-punk acts from the mid/late aughts to the Las Vegas Festival Grounds on Oct. 21 and 22, from Yellowcard to Rise Against to Green Day.

"Fat Lip" rockers Sum 41 are one of the 55 artists playing this year's iteration of WWWY, which will mark two of the Canadian group's final shows (in May, they announced they'll be disbanding after their current tour commitments). Though they've been touring for nearly 30 years, frontman Deryck Whibley tells GRAMMY.com that the front row "looks the same as it did in 2001."

"This music speaks to a younger generation, and the new generation always gets into it," he says. "There's just something about this kind of music that is youthful and exciting, and there's energy there. I think it's always going to be here."

In celebration of the 2023 iteration of When We Were Young Fest, Whibley put together a playlist of 15 songs by his fellow performers, including the Offspring, Blink-182 and the Ataris. Whether or not you're headed to Las Vegas, get your dose of pop-punk nostalgia on Spotify, Apple Music, Amazon Music, or Pandora.

15 Must-Hear Albums In March 2024: Beyoncé, Ariana Grande, Shakira & More
(Clockwise) Sheryl Crow, Deryck Whibley, Tierra Whack, Justin Timberlake, Schoolboy Q, Kasey Musgraves, Kim Gordon, Tyla, Beyoncé, Dua Lipa

Photos: Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic; RICHARD THIGPEN; Jon Kopaloff/Getty Images for WIRED; Owen Schatz; Jason Armond/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images; KELLY CHRISTINE SUTTON; Jason Squires/FilmMagic; JASON ARMOND / LOS ANGELES TIMES VIA GETTY IMAGES; KEVIN MAZUR/GETTY IMAGES FOR THE RECORDING ACADEMY; Araya Doheny/FilmMagic

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15 Must-Hear Albums In March 2024: Beyoncé, Ariana Grande, Shakira & More

From the debuts of Tyla and rapper Tierra Whack, to a new salvo from Kim Gordon, women dominate the list of releases for March. While it may be Women's History Month, there are a few major releases from male artists, including Justin Timberlake.

GRAMMYs/Mar 1, 2024 - 04:02 pm

March is Women’s History Month, and women in music are more powerful than ever. 

The month begins with the comeback of several queens, starting with Kim Gordon’s The Collective and Ariana Grande’s Eternal Sunshine. Later, country darling Kacey Musgraves will unveil Deeper Well, and Shakira will drop the empowering Las Mujeres Ya No Lloran. Long-awaited debuts by GRAMMY-winning singer Tyla and singer/bassist Blu DeTiger will also join the lineup, with their respective Tyla and All I Ever Want Is Everything. Wrapping up March on a high note, Beyoncé will drop her highly-anticipated Act II on the 29th.

Men will release music in March as well: Expect new releases by Justin Timberlake, Bleachers, the last record from pop-punk band Sum 41, and (allegedly) Kanye West and Ty Dolla $ign’s Vultures 2.

To make the most of this prolific time, GRAMMY.com compiled all the must-hear albums dropping March 2024.

Schoolboy Q - Blue Lips

Release date: March 1

On Feb. 1, Schoolboy Q’s website was updated with a mysterious countdown and a 37-second video. In it, the rapper finally unveiled the setlist and title of his much-awaited sixth studio album, Blue Lips, as well as its release date — March 1.

Blue Lips is Q’s first full record since 2019’s Crash Talk, although he had been teasing the album since 2020. Hopefully, it was worth the wait: Blue Lips holds 18 tracks and participations by Rico Nasty, Freddie Gibbs, and more. Q has also started a new vlog series on social media called "wHy not?," where he takes the viewers behind the scenes of making the album and previews snippets of the songs.

So far, the rapper shared tracks "Blueslides," "Back n Love" with Devin Malik, "Cooties" and "Love Birds" with Devin Malik and Lance Skiiwalker, as well as lead single "Yeern 101."

Bleachers - Bleachers

Release date: March 8

Fronted by 10-time GRAMMY winner and 2024 Producer Of The Year Jack Antonoff, rock band Bleachers will release its eponymous fourth studio album on March 8.

In a press release, Bleachers is described as Antonoff’s "distinctly New Jersey take on the bizarre sensory contradictions of modern life." The self-titled record will blend sadness and joy into "music for driving on the highway to, for crying to and for dancing to at weddings."

The band shared four singles so far: lead track "Modern Girl," "Alma Mater" featuring Lana del Rey, "Tiny Moves" and "Me Before You." Through serendipitous melodies and soulful writing, Bleachers commit to "exist in crazy times but remember what counts." 

Bleachers will tour the U.K. in March and the U.S. in May and June.

Kim Gordon - The Collective

Release date: March 8

Former Sonic Youth vocalist Kim Gordon will release her sophomore LP, The Collective, on March 8. The album is a follow-up to her 2019 debut No Home Record, and furthers her collaboration with producer Justin Raisen, as well as additional producing from Anthony Paul Lopez.

"On this record, I wanted to express the absolute craziness I feel around me right now," said Gordon in a press statement. "This is a moment when nobody really knows what truth is, when facts don’t necessarily sway people, when everyone has their own side, creating a general sense of paranoia. To soothe, to dream, escape with drugs, TV shows, shopping, the internet, everything is easy, smooth, convenient, branded. It made me want to disrupt, to follow something unknown, maybe even to fail."

Back in January, the singer unveiled the album’s moody first single, "Bye Bye," and a music video starring her daughter, Coco Gordon Moore. The second single, "I’m A Man," came out in February. Gordon will play six concerts in support of The Collective, starting March 21 in Burlington, Vermont.

Ariana Grande - Eternal Sunshine

Release date: March 8

It’s been almost four years since Ariana Grande’s last studio album, 2020’s Positions. The starlet spent the past few years filming Wicked, an adaptation of the Broadway musical of the same name, and declared that she wouldn’t be releasing any new records until it was done.

The wait is finally over, as Grande announced her seventh studio album, Eternal Sunshine. The album’s first and only single, "Yes, And?," dropped in January, followed by an Instagram video of the soprano singer explaining the concept of the album to her Republic Records team. 

"It’s kind of a concept album ’cause it’s all different heightened pieces of the same story, of the same experience," she said. "Some of [the songs] are really vulnerable, some of them are like playing the part of what people kind of expect me to be sometimes and having fun with it."

"I think this one may be your favorite," Grande wrote of Eternal Sunshine on her Instagram Story. "It is mine." The 13-song collection will reportedly explore house and R&B, and will have only one feature: Grande’s grandmother, who appears on the last track, "Ordinary Things."

Kanye West and Ty Dolla $ign -Vultures 2

Release date: March 8

After a series of delays, Kanye West and Ty Dolla $ign’s first collaborative album, Vultures 1, ultimately dropped on Feb. 10, 2024. Set to be the first installment of a trilogy, the album was released independently through West’s YZY label, and debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart, with all of its 16 tracks also charting on Billboard’s Hot 100.

Billed as ¥$, the duo plans to release Vultures 2 on March 8, and follow up with Vultures 3 on April 5. Although any other info about the upcoming volumes is still unclear, Timbaland recently shared on X (formerly Twitter) that Vultures 2 is "OTW." (Timbaland produced Vultures 1’s "Keys to My Life" and "Fuk Sumn" with Playboi Carti and Travis Scott.)

In the past month, West and $ign held a few listening parties for the album in the U.S. and Europe, but additional schedules are yet to be revealed.

The Jesus and Mary Chain - Glasgow Eyes

Release date: March 8

To celebrate their 40th anniversary, alt-rock band the Jesus and Mary Chain will release their eighth studio album, Glasgow Eyes, on March 8.

As it can be seen on lead single "Jamcod," the Scottish group still runs strong on the distorted synths and electrifying guitars that shaped their sound. "People should expect a Jesus and Mary Chain record, and that’s certainly what Glasgow Eyes is," vocalist Jim Reid said in a statement. "Our creative approach is remarkably the same as it was in 1984, just hit the studio and see what happens. We went in with a bunch of songs and let it take its course. There are no rules, you just do whatever it takes."

Glasgow Eyes also mends a six-year gap since the Jesus and Mary Chain’s latest album, 2017’s Damage and Joy. To further commemorate, the band will also release an autobiography and embark on a European tour throughout March and April.

Justin Timberlake - Everything I Thought It Was

Release date: March 15

Justin Timberlake is back with his first studio album since 2018’s Man of the Woods. The new record, Everything I Thought It Was,  is spearheaded by singles "Selfish" and "Drown."

"I worked for a long time on this album, and I ended up with 100 songs. So, narrowing them down to 18 was a thing," said Timberlake in an interview with Zane Lowe on Apple Music 1. "I’m really excited about this album. I think every artist probably says this, but it is my best work." The Memphis singer also shared that there are "incredibly honest" moments in the album, but also "a lot of f—ng fun."

To celebrate his return, Timberlake announced his Forget Tomorrow World Tour. Set to kick off on April 29 in Vancouver, the tour will cross through North America and Europe until its final date on Dec. 16 in Indianapolis.

Kacey Musgraves - Deeper Well

Release date: March 15

Fresh off winning Best Country Duo/Group Performance at the 2024 GRAMMYs for the Zach Bryan duet "I Remember Everything," Kacey Musgraves announced her fifth studio album, Deeper Well..

"My Saturn has returned/ When I turned 27/ Everything started to change," she sings in the contemplative title track, exploring how she changed over the last few years. The single sets the tone for the rest of the record, which was co-produced by longtime collaborators Ian Fitchuk and Daniel Tashian

Featuring 14 tracks, Deeper Well was mostly recorded at the legendary Electric Lady studios in New York City. "I was seeking some different environmental energy, and Electric Lady has the best mojo. Great ghosts," the country star noted in a press release.

On social media, Musgraves wrote: "it’s a collection of songs I hold very dear to my heart. I hope it makes a home in all of your hearts, too." Deeper Well follows 2021’s star-crossed

Tierra Whack - World Wide Whack

Release date: March 15

When rapper Tierra Whack released her first album, 2018’s Whack World, she quickly garnered the admiration of both critics and fans. Comprising 15 one-minute tracks and music videos for each, the release was a refreshing introduction to a groundbreaking artist.

In 2024, the Philadelphia-born star is preparing to release World Wide Whack, labeled her official debut album in a press release. The cover artwork, created by Alex Da Corte, was inspired by theater character Pierrot, fashion designer Elsa Schiaparelli and Donna Summer, and represents "the first reveal of the World Wide Whack character, an alter ego both untouchable and vulnerable, superhuman and painfully human, whose surprising story will unfold in images and video over the course of the album’s visual rollout."

The album follows Whack’s 2021 EP trilogy — Rap?, Pop? and R&B? — and is foreshadowed by the poignant "27 Club" and the eccentric "Shower Song."

Tyla - Tyla

Release date: March 22

After a glowing 2023 with viral hit "Water," South African newcomer Tyla started 2024 with a blast. Last month, she became the first person to win a GRAMMY for Best African Music Performance, and the youngest-ever African singer to win a GRAMMY Award at 22 years old.

Next month is poised to be even better: Tyla’s eponymous debut LP drops on March 22, featuring "Water" and other hits like  "Truth or Dare," "Butterflies" and "On and On," as well as a guest appearance by labelmate Travis Scott.

"African music is going global and I’m so blessed to be one of the artists pushing the culture," Tyla shared on Instagram. Her unique blend of amapiano, pop and R&B is making waves around the world, and the star will rightfully celebrate by touring Europe and North America throughout this spring.

Shakira - Las Mujeres Ya No Lloran

Release date: March 22

The title of Shakira’s new album, Las Mujeres Ya No Lloran, is a nod to her 2023 hit "Shakira: Bzrp Music Sessions, Vol. 53" with Argentine DJ Bizarrap. In the lyrics, she states that "las mujeres ya no lloran, las mujeres facturan" — "women don’t cry anymore, they make money."

The single is a diss to Shakira’s ex-partner, footballer Gerard Piqué, and, like the rest of the record, served as a healing experience after their separation. "Making this body of work has been an alchemical process," the Colombian star said in a statement. "While writing each song I was rebuilding myself. While singing them, my tears transformed into diamonds, and my vulnerability into strength."

Las Mujeres will feature 16 songs, including her Bizarrap collaboration and singles "Te Felicito" with Rauw Alejandro, "Copa Vacía" with Manuel Turizo, "Acróstico," "Monotonía" with Ozuna, "El Jefe" with Mexican band Fuerza Regida, and "TQG" with fellow Colombian Karol G.

Back in 2018, Sheryl Crow said that the LP Threads would be her last — fortunately, she changed her mind. "I said I’d never make another record, though there was no point to it," the singer shared in a statement about her upcoming album, Evolution. "This music comes from my soul. And I hope whoever hears this record can feel that."

According to the same statement, "Evolution is Sheryl Crow at her most authentically human self," and its music and lyrics "came from sitting in the quiet and writing from a deep soul place." 

The entire album was written in a month, starting with the title track, which expresses Crow’s anxieties about artificial intelligence and the future of humans. From then on, Crow and producer Mike Elizondo found bliss. "The songs just kept flowing out of me, four songs turned into nine and it was pretty obvious this was an album," she said.

In addition to the album's title track, Crow also shared singles "Do It Again" and "Alarm Clock."

Sum 41 - Heaven :x: Hell

Release date: March 29

After nearly three decades together, punk-metal mavericks Sum 41 are parting ways. Their final release will be a double album. Heaven :x: Hell, set to drop on March 29.

Heaven is composed of 10 pop-punk tracks reminiscent of the band’s early years, while Hell is 10 tracks of pure heavy metal, reflecting the direction they took more recently. "Once I heard the music, I was confident enough to say, ‘This is the record I’d like to go out on,'" frontman Deryck Whibley said in a statement. "We’ve made a double album of pop punk and metal, and it makes sense. It took a long time for us to pave this lane for ourselves, but we did, and it’s unique to us."

The band shared singles "Landmines," "Rise Up" and "Waiting on a Twist of Fate," and proved that they’re leaving on top of their game. "I love Sum 41, what we’ve achieved, endured, and stuck together through, which is why I want to call it quits," Whibley added. "It’s the right time to walk away from it. I’m putting all of my energy into what’s ahead."

But before embarking on new ventures, Sum 41 will spend the rest of the year touring throughout Asia, North America, and Europe.

Blu DeTiger - All I Ever Want Is Everything

Release date: March 29

At only 26 years old, Blu DeTiger has already toured with Caroline Polachek, played bass for Jack Antonoff’s band Bleachers, collaborated with Fender to launch a new line of bass guitars, and appeared on the 2023 Forbes 30 Under 30’s music list.

Now, she prepares to release her debut studio album, All I Ever Want Is Everything. "This album is about growing and becoming, settling into yourself and learning to love where you’re at through it all. It’s about learning how to be your own best friend," the bassist and singer wrote on Instagram.

"Dangerous Game," the lead single off the album, showcases DeTiger’s effervescent energy and potential for pop stardom. Starting April, she will also headline a U.S. tour across Boston, Washington D.C., New York, Toronto, Chicago, San Francisco, Los Angeles and San Diego.

Beyoncé - Act II

Release date: March 29

What better event to announce a new album than the most-watched TV program ever? That’s what Beyoncé did during Super Bowl LVIII, on Feb. 11. At the end of a Verizon commercial, the singer declared "Okay, they ready. Drop the new music," while simultaneously releasing Act II’s lead singles, "16 Carriages" and "Texas Hold 'Em," on social media and streaming platforms.

Coming out March 29, Act II is the second part of Beyoncé’s ongoing trilogy, which was written and recorded during the COVID-19 pandemic. The album is preceded by 2022’s acclaimed Act I: Renaissance, but instead of house and disco, the singer will reportedly take a deep dive into country music.

This isn’t Queen Bey’s first foray into the genre — in 2016, she released Lemonade’s "Daddy Lessons," and her 2021 IVY PARK Rodeo collection was inspired by "the overlooked history of the American Black cowboy," as she told Harper’s Bazaar. It was just a question of time for Beyoncé to enter her country era, and it is finally upon us.

17 Love Songs That Have Won GRAMMYs: "I Will Always Love You," "Drunk In Love" & More

Green Day's 'Saviors': How Their New Album Links 'Dookie' & 'American Idiot' Decades Later
Tré Cool, Billie Joe Armstrong and Mike Dirnt of Green Day

Photo: Cindy Ord / Getty Images for SiriusXM

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Green Day's 'Saviors': How Their New Album Links 'Dookie' & 'American Idiot' Decades Later

The punk stalwarts made a U-turn on 2020's 'Father of All'; with its follow-up, 'Saviors,' they're barrelling forward while honoring their past. Here's how Green Day ramped up to it.

GRAMMYs/Jan 19, 2024 - 02:09 pm

Green Day's new album represents a spiritual link between their past and present. Fittingly titled Saviors, the band's 14th release is wholly in the present while connecting to their lynchpin albums: 1994's Dookie and 2004's American Idiot.

The quartet will tour Saviors — which was released Jan. 19 and shares a title with the tour — in conjunction with the 20th and 30th anniversaries of Green Day's major albums. As with any major milestone, creating a new record as two of their biggest albums aged created a bit of wistful creative confusion. 

"Did I want it to be an old-school Green Day punk record, or did I want to do something that felt more lush and stadiumlike?" leader Billie Joe Armstrong told Vulture. "When we saw it come together, I remembered thinking, Oh, this is the connection. Saviors does feel like a trifecta with Dookie and American Idiot where it feels like a life's work.

"I went from not knowing what the hell I was doing," Armstrong continued, "to going, 'Oh gosh, we managed to bridge the gap between those two huge albums.'"

This summer, listeners can behold the triad: Green Day will perform the relentless, hilarious, melody-stuffed Dookie and stadium-sized, polemical American Idiot in full. Tickets to the international dates — with support from the Smashing Pumpkins, the Hives, the Linda Lindas, and many more — can be found at their website.

With Saviors out in the world, here's a breakdown of the ramp-up to the album.

Their Previous Album Took A Detour, But They're Back On Course

Green Day's last album, 2020's Father of All Motherf—ers — commonly shortened to Father of All… — was arguably their most divisive to date.

"Motown, glam and manic anthemic. Punks, freaks and punishers!" is how Armstrong, bassist Mike Dirnt and drummer Tré Cool described it. Which sums up its 10 frenzied tunes, which add up to a very lean 26 minutes.

But at times,
Father of All… didn't quite sound like Green Day, but an unpredictable  Frankenstein of retro and modern styles, a feel-bad Black Keys. And, sadly, the pandemic precluded them from proving these songs' mettle live.

Their next album would be tailored to the live experience — consciously or not. 

Saviors Was Almost Called 1972

And in many regards, Green Day decided to go back to their roots with Saviors. In fact, the original title was the year all three men were born.

When Green Day banded together in London with Rob Cavallo — who produced Dookie and American Idiot, among other career highlights — the album had the working title of 1972.

The album's title track resembles some of the sentiment on American Idiot, Armstrong told USA Today. "Saviors" centers on the feeling of being "desperate for answers and leadership and getting out of the mess we’re in."

Until the end of the recording process, Saviors didn't have its lead single, "The American Dream is Killing Me."

"The American Dream Is Killing Me" Came Late In The Game

Crafted as "a look at the way the traditional American Dream doesn't work for a lot of people" — as the band put it in a statement — "The American Dream is Killing Me" actually dates back to four years ago.

"It was one of the last things we recorded," Dirnt told Rolling Stone. "Rob's like, 'What else do you got?' As we get towards the end of recording, it was two songs. It was that one and 'Father to a Son.' And those two songs, Rob's like, 'Oh, you've got to record those.'"

They're Not Getting Sucked Into The Past

Two albums, from decades ago, performed front-to-back, in stadiums the world over: that could categorize Green Day as a nostalgia act. But Green Day are nostalgic for nothing; rather, they still harbor the ethos of their punk youth.

"I still try to maintain that kind of spirit about what we do," Armstrong told
People, "which is just being independent and free to express yourself the way that you want." That might mean a surprise set inside a New York City subway station, or announcing their Saviors tour plans on "The Howard Stern Show." 

"I think one of the strong points of this band is we just stay in the moment," Dirnt said to Rolling Stone. "Don't look backwards, and don't look too far forward. Stay in the moment, but appreciate the moment." And the Saviors tour will provide so many moments to remember.

10 Bay Area Punk Bands To Know: Dead Kennedys, Operation Ivy, Green Day & More

10 Bay Area Punk Bands To Know: Dead Kennedys, Operation Ivy, Green Day & More
Tim Armstrong and Lars Fredricksen of Rancid perform at Lollapalooza in 1996.

Photo: Tim Mosenfelder/Getty Images

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10 Bay Area Punk Bands To Know: Dead Kennedys, Operation Ivy, Green Day & More

From pioneers the Nuns and Crime, to Pinhead Gunpowder and the Donnas, Hickey and Ceremony, the San Francisco Bay Area holds its own against any other punk epicenter.

GRAMMYs/Jan 17, 2024 - 02:02 pm

Punk was punk before punk had a name and, as such, has many great epicenters. From the Ramones, who rocketed out of New York City to London's sneering and spitting Sex Pistols, and Detroit rockers such as the MC5 and the Stooges who set the attitudinal tone for the genre, punk is often considered an east-of-the-Mississippi (and across the pond) phenomenon. 

But that thinking negates the very prolific West Coast, and generations of California uber alles. The San Francisco Bay Area, specifically, is home to a multitude of punk bands — as well as crucial venues like 924 Gilman and the Mabuhay Gardens, and revered pubs including Search and Destroy, Cometbus and Maximum Rocknroll, as well as festivals like Mosswood Meltdown — whose music helped define the genre from the late '70s onward. Detractors best take warning: From pioneers the Nuns, Crime and Flipper, to MDC, Pinhead Gunpowder and Capitalist Casualties, the Donnas, Ceremony and Scary Scare, the Bay's multifarious scene holds its own against any other punk epicenter. 

In honor of a new album from hometown heroes Green Day and major anniversaries of the group's seminal LPs Dookie (1994) and American Idiot (2004), press play and get in the pit with these 10 essential Bay Area punk bands. Welcome to paradise.

The Avengers

Crucial Album:The Avengers a.k.a. The Pink Album

Formed in 1977, San Francisco's the Avengers were among the first wave of Bay Area punk bands and remain legendary for their raw, anthemic tracks (see "Summer of Hate" and "We Are The One") and distinct vocals of Penelope Houston. They hold the distinguished honor of having opened for the Sex Pistols at their final performance at SF's Winterland Ballroom.

The quartet of Houston, Greg Ingraham (guitar), Jimmy Wisley (bass) and Danny Furious (drums) were "by far the coolest and youngest sounding" of Bay punks wrote music critic Byron Coley. "They roared without irony." 

The Avengers first and only release in their original lineup was a three-song EP from 1977, We Are the One. Released in 1983, four years after the Avengers broke up, The Pink Album compiles demos, tracks cut with new members, and takes from sessions recorded with the Pistols' Steve Jones. 

Dead Kennedys

Crucial album: Fresh Fruit For Rotting Vegetables

Perhaps the early punk band most synonymous with San Francisco, the Dead Kennedys formed in 1978 as a quartet with Jello Biafra on vocals. The group was a staple at Mabuhay Gardens and other local venues, performing in a more "traditional" style before veering into hardcore and thrash in later years. 

As their name might infer, Dead Kennedys' music was often political and provocative — filled with satire about authority, national politics and the scene itself. San Francisco Chronicle columnist Herb Caen panned the group in a 1978 column, writing "Just when you think tastelessness has reached its nadir, along comes a punk rock group called The Dead Kennedys which will play at Mabuhay Gardens on Nov. 22, the 15th anniversary of John F. Kennedy's assassination." Some stores refused to sell the Kennedys' albums and, in the mid '80s, the band's Frankenchrist album became the center of an obscenity trial (which resulted in a hung jury).

Dead Kennedys released four albums and an EP before breaking up in 1986, and each release sounds a bit different. While your preference may vary based on your affinity for hardcore, their 1980 debut album Fresh Fruit For Rotting Vegetables is a classic. Featuring their best-known tunes "Holiday In Cambodia," "California Über Alles" and "Too Drunk To F—," Fresh Fruit embodies a spirit of tongue-in-cheek brutal hookiness that flows through the Kennedys' entire discography. 

After multiple credit and royalty-based legal battles, Dead Kennedys reformed and performed without Biafria in the early 2000s. Biafria remains a musician, spoken word artist, and political activist.  Drummer D.H. Peligro — who joined the Kennedys in 1981 and was featured on three albums, later reuniting with the group in 2001 — passed away in 2023.

Crimpshrine

Crucial box set: Free box

Pioneers of the East Bay punk scene centered in Berkeley around the venue 924 Gilman, Crimpshrine was the brainchild of (pre)teens Aaron Cometbus — who also founded a popular, eponymous zine and would play with Pinhead Gunpowder — and future Op Ivy vocalist Jesse Michaels. The friends named their band after a girl with blonde, crimped hair. 

In a brief period, Crimpshrine would lay the groundwork for the East Bay punk sound typified by Green Day, Operation Ivy and others; as record label Numero Group eloquently put it, Crimpshrine sounded "melodic but full of feedback, and a singer who sounded like he gargled glass." 

Although the band first formed in 1982, Crimpshrine cut their first demo in '87 and released their debut EP, Sleep, What's That?, on the local Lookout Records. That and other releases — several split EPs, a second solo EP titled Quit Talkin' Claude…, and a single full-length, 1989's Lame Gig Contest — weren't as political as the Bay's punk forefathers tended to be. Rather, Crimpshrine penned fast, personal tracks that touched on friendship, romance, loneliness, homelessness, and drugs.  

Operation Ivy

Crucial album: Energy

Operation Ivy's ska-infused punk sound and raucous performances (mostly at 924 Gilman) led them to become one of the East Bay's most influential punk bands. Named for a nuclear weapons testing program code name and featuring Crimpshrine's Michaels on vocals alongside Tim Armstrong (also on guitar), Op Ivy quickly developed a cult following.

"The kind of ska Operation Ivy played was totally new territory. It went way beyond having punk elements," Aaron Carnes wrote in In Defense Of Ska. "Some Op Ivy songs were power-chord punk blasters; others were upbeat-driven ska songs. But it wasn’t a dance party. It was unleashed, unapologetic punk-rock fury." 

Op Ivy were only together for two years, but played 185 shows, recorded 32 songs and even more demos. More than 30 years later, the band's sole studio album, 1989's Energy, is still a vibrant and resonant record of how punks constantly turn it around. Op Ivy's final show — fittingly at 924 Gilman, months after being offered a major label deal that they ultimately turned down — was also Green Day's first performance. 

Green Day

Crucial album: Dookie

Perhaps the biggest punk band to come out of the Bay, Green Day requires very little in the way of introduction. The four-time GRAMMY winners (and 17-time nominees) have been rockin' since 1987 when they were students at Pinole Valley High School. Originally performing as Blood Rage and then Sweet Children, Green Day first debuted under their new name during a show with Operation Ivy at 924 Gilman. 

Although OGs and Gilman devotees would certainly know the band's 1990 debut album 39/Smooth and the following year's Kerplunk, Green Day's third album was their first true crest into the mainstream. Released in February 1994, Dookie nearly topped the Billboard 200 and netted now-canonical hits "Longview," "Welcome To Paradise," and "Basket Case." The album also netted the trio of  Billie Joe Armstrong, Mike Dirnt and Tre Cool a GRAMMY Award for Best Alternative Music Performance. Today, it's sold over 15 million copies.

For the next 30 years, Green Day wormed their way into punk and not-so-punk earholes. The band's slew of hit singles and resonant albums further mainstreamed the genre, but consistently kept their unique sound. The band made their GRAMMY stage debut in 2005, performing "American Idiot" (which celebrates its 20th birthday in 2024) and the following year took home the golden gramophone for Record Of The Year for the thoughtful "Boulevard of Broken Dreams." That wasn't Green Day's final win at Music's Biggest Night: 2009's 21st Century Breakdown won Best Rock Album at that year's GRAMMYs. 

Although a lesser group could easily rest on their laurels, Green Day continues to put out new music. Their most recent release — and fourteenth studio album — Saviors offers 15 tracks of pop-punk goodness that prove the band are nowhere past their prime. They're also still true to their roots: Armstrong and Dirnt still live in the Bay and invested in local businesses (Dirnt was co-owner of Rudy's Can't Fail Cafe and Armstrong was one of the co-owners of local shop Broken Guitars (now Oakland Guitars).

Rancid

Crucial album: …And Out Come The Wolves

Op Ivy's Tim Armstrong and Matt Freeman formed Rancid in 1991. They brought on Lars Frederiksen a few years later and, with a few lineup changes in the interim, are still going strong 30-plus years later. The group released their 10th album, Tomorrow Never Comes, in June 2023 and performed during that year's Punk Rock Bowling.

A cornerstone of the East Bay scene, Rancid picked up where Op Ivy left off, further fusing ska and punk with Armstrong's gravy talk-sing vocals at center. The band's lyrical themes followed suit as well, dealing in introspection, anti-authoritarianism and politics, with plenty of spotlight given to the Bay Area's scene. 

While there's plenty to choose from over a three-decade, double-digit album career, the output from Rancid's early years remains the most resonant. Sophomore album Let's Go and 1995's …And Out Come The Wolves are ska-punk masterpieces, with the latter's "Time Bomb," "Ruby Soho" and the musical chronicle "Journey To The End Of The East Bay" are a resonant salad years soundtrack. Released further into their career, Indestructible and Let The Dominoes Fall bring a bit more pop-punk into the game. 

Multiple members of Rancid have ventured into solo projects and new groups, including Frederiksen's eponymous Lars Frederiksen and the Bastards, Armstong's A Poet's Life project with L.A. reggae outfit the Aggrolites, brief project with Billie Joe Armstrong the Armstrongs, and punk/rap-rock supergroup the Transplants, which featured Travis Barker, Rob Aston, Armstrong and current Interrupters guitarist Kevin Bivona.

Frightwig

Crucial album: Faster, Frightwig, Kill! Kill!

Precursors to the riot grrrl movement, all-female group Frightwig left a lasting mark on both San Francisco and early '90s alt-rock/punk. (In fact, Kurt Cobain is wearing a Frightwig t-shirt during Nirvana's "MTV's Unplugged" sessions.) Founded in the early '80s by teen San Franciscians, Frightwig spent over a decade "screaming and shredding their way through glass ceilings and unapologetically leaving behind a pile of shards," according to their website.

Expectedly, the trio and sometimes quartet received a fair amount of attention for simply being young women in punk. They were known to turn the tables by inviting male fans onstage to dance and be ridiculed while playing "A Man's Gotta Do What A Man's Gotta Do."

"We really wanted to play with what the status quo of womanhood was supposed to be visually and also sonically. That’s part of our mission, to really challenge what people think about what a woman is supposed to look like and to do," guitarist/vocalist Mia d’Bruzzi later told SFGate.

The group — which experienced a number of lineup changes in its initial 12-year run — played many of San Francisco's major punk venues and toured with locals Flipper and Dead Kennedys, as well as Butthole Surfers, Sonic Youth, and Bikini Kill. Raw, noisy, feminist and tongue-in-cheek, the trio recorded two full albums — 1984's Cat Farm Faboo and Faster, Frightwig, Kill! Kill! two years later — and several EPs before disbanding in 1994.

In 2023, a reconstituted Frightwig (with the expectation of long-time drummer Cecilia Kuhn, who died in 2019), released We Need To Talk. The 11-track album is a more polished, rollicking zip through the life of a 60-something empowered punk, with defiant tracks like "Aging Sux"  and "Ride My Bike," political takes such as "War On Women," and a re-recording of their popular "A Man's Gotta Do."

Jawbreaker

Crucial album: 24 Hour Revenge Therapy

Although formed in 1986 at NYU and briefly relocating to L.A., San Francisco’s Mission District is Jawbreaker’s spiritual home. (The band were even on two Bay Area labels: San Rafael-based Shredder and San Francisco’s Tupelo/Communion.) Despite often being labeled “emo punk," Jawbreaker has been always been so much more; the band's clever, personal and relatable lyrics courtesy of guitarist/vocalist Blake Schwarzenbach and their superb rhythm section with drummer Adam Pfahler and bassist Chris Bauermeister resonated with audiences throughout the West Coast. 

After moving to the Bay in 1991, Jawbreaker released Bivouac (1992) followed by fan-favorite 24 Hour Revenge Therapy (1994). The group were invited by Nirvana to open six shows on their 1993 In Utero tour, after which rabid fans and the underground music press were wary of Jawbreaker "selling out" and signing to a major like Green Day. Jawbreaker vehemently denied the possibility of signing to a major label in print interviews and even from the stage.

But by 1994, the group had signed to DGC and the backlash was immediate. Former fans would buy tickets to their shows just to turn their backs to the band while flipping them off. Their major label debut, Dear You, was a much slicker production and sold poorly. Despite a messy breakup in 1996, Jawbreaker remained underground legends and their 24 Hour a touchstone for generations of punks (emo and otherwise). In 2017, Jawbreaker reunited with a seven-song unannounced set at East Bay venue the Ivy Room and have been performing regularly ever since.

AFI

Crucial album: The Art Of Drowning

Today considered a pop-punk or emo group, East Bay outfit AFI have masterfully shifted between punk subgenres for three decades. Founded in the Northern California city of Ukiah before relocating to Berkeley in 1993, the (current) quintet of Davey Havok, Jade Puget, Hunter Burgan and Adam Carson were fixtures at Gilman and elsewhere in the East Bay, initially leaning into a hardcore sound. 

There's a little something for everyone over the course of AFI's 11 albums. Mid-'90s releases Answer That and Stay Fashionable, Very Proud of Ya and Shut Your Mouth and Open Your Eyes are snotty, speedy and cheeky punk, exemplified by songs like "I Wanna Get a Mohawk (But Mom Won't Let Me Get One)" and "He Who Laughs Last." Black Sails In The Sunset marked a move to darker sounds and melodic vocals, while 2000's The Art Of Drowning is dripping in horrorpunk themes and could be considered the group's take on the Misfits. Their commercial high point at the time, Drowning provided a dark counterweight for listeners coming of age in the early aughts world of pop-punk.

Future releases leaned into post-hardcore and emo: Sing the Sorrow, Decemberunderground and Crash Love, ushering the band further into the mainstream. AFI's last release came in the form of Bodies, an album of typically poetic lyrics, gothic imagery and attempts at a new wave sound. 

Shannon and the Clams

Crucial album: Sleep Talk

Less straight-ahead punks than the majority of this list, Shannon and the Clams are proof that punk isn't a specific sound so much as an attitude. Fronted by powerful vocalist Shannon Shaw, the quartet released their first album in 2009 and soon gained attention in the Bay and beyond for their meld of punk, garage, R&B and doo-wop.

Their sophomore record, Sleep Talk, is filled with Ronettes-eque yips, surf guitar and memorable chanting choruses. Throughout, the record oscillates between whining early '60s style ballads ("Done With You"), snotty vocalized bops ("The Cult Song") and fuzzed-out ragers ("Toxic Revenge") reminiscent of early Ramones — an excellent showcase of the band's range of interest and ability. 

The expansion of punk and garage continued through Shannon and the Clams' well-titled further releases: Dreams in the Rat House (2013), Gone by the Dawn (2015), Onion (2018), and Year of the Spider (2021). True to prolific form, Shaw is involved in several other projects, most notably Hunx and His Punx and a magnificent solo project steeped in country and blues produced by Dan Auerbach.

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24 Songs Turning 20: Listen To 2004's Bangers, From "Yeah!" To "Since U Been Gone"
(L-R) Lil Jon, Usher, and Ludacris perform at Madison Square Garden in 2004.

Photo: Frank Micelotta/Getty Images

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24 Songs Turning 20: Listen To 2004's Bangers, From "Yeah!" To "Since U Been Gone"

Ready to feel old? Put on this playlist of hits that made 2004 a year of belt-along jams and unforgettable hooks, including Daddy Yankee's "Gasolina" and Ashlee Simpson's "Pieces Of Me."

GRAMMYs/Jan 8, 2024 - 04:20 pm

A quick Google search of "top 2004 songs" can be summarized simply: What a time to be alive.

While it was arguably the year of Usher — who scored four Billboard Hot 100 chart-toppers in 2004, including the year's biggest song, the Lil Jon- and Ludacris-assisted "Yeah!" — there were countless hits that have aged impeccably. Even 20 years later, there isn't a dance floor or karaoke bar that wouldn't go wild for J-Kwon's "Tipsy" or Kelly Clarkson's "Since U Been Gone."

Whether you were jamming to them on your iPod Mini or ripping them off of Limewire, revisit 24 tracks that made an impact — and still serve up the vibes 20 years later.

Listen on Spotify, Amazon Music, or Apple Music below.