Thirty years ago, long before there was such a thing as Gilman Street, Green Day, or the East Bay pop punk explosion, three guys got together in an off-the-grid hippie wilderness known as Spy Rock, at the heart of Northern California’s legendary Emerald Triangle. They hooked their amps up to their solar panels, made up a couple songs about living on the backside of nowhere, and The Lookouts were born.
It would be the first time 12-year-old Tre Cool ever laid hands on a drumstick or a set of drums, but over the following five and a half years he would hone the skills that would see him headlining amphitheatres and stadiums, winning Grammy Awards, and being inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame with his second band, Green Day. Guitarist and singer Larry Livermore would go on to co-found Lookout Records, the indie label that introduced Green Day and many other bands to the world.
Together with bassist (and future forest ranger) Kain Kong, and with guest appearances by Operation Ivy’s Tim Armstrong and Green Day’s Billie Joe Armstrong, The Lookouts produced a legacy of two albums, two EPs, and several compilation tracks, the best of which are featured here. Also included is a track from The Lookouts’ very first demo tape, recorded in 1985, which features Tre singing backups in his as yet unbroken three-and-a-half-octave soprano.