"Green Day was the first show I ever went to -- ever," Against Me!'s Laura Jane Grace tells Billboard, 22 years after she watched the band rip through a set supporting Dookie as a 13-year-old in Orlando. "So to be going out with them for a proper tour is pretty monumental."
Days after releasing their new album Revolution Radio last Friday, Green Day announced a North American arena tour that kicks off in March 2017, with Against Me! onboard as openers for the 24 dates. Grace and co. have opened for the pop-punk legends before, at a small handful of American Idiot stadium shows in 2005, but this will be the bands' first time combining for an extended run.
"It's been in the works for a little while, and it was pretty much on their end -- it's their tour, and we're just guests on it," says Grace. "I'm just really honored, humbled and stoked that they asked us to do the tour."
When asked about spending a few months as an opening act after headlining for much of the recent past, Grace adds, "Doing a tour like that, it's not lost on us that the majority of the people that we'll be playing to will just never have heard of us. That kind of gives you the freedom to play whatever you want to, really, since it's all new to people. I still want to go out there with the killer mentality -- I want to blow them off the stage, even though I'm sure they'll be blowing us off the stage every night."
The tour announcement comes in the midst of a hectic fall for Grace: Shape Shift With Me, Against Me!'s seventh studio album, was released last month, while Tranny: Confessions Of Punk Rock's Most Infamous Anarchist Sellout, her first autobiography, is out on Nov. 15. Against Me! is currently touring with Bad Religion, and Grace's Total Treble label will release singer-songwriter David Dondero's new EP, With Love, on Nov. 4.
Will there be any downtime at the top of 2017, prior to the Green Day trek? "That's kind of the plan right now," she says. "Not to disclose what happens after Green Day, but we have plans up until summer of 2017 as of now. Green Day is the first thing we're doing in the new year, but after that, we'll be out and we'll be busy."
Grace describes the process of waiting for some of the more exciting moments of the next six months - her book release, the Green Day tour and what's to come after -- as "strange limbo periods." She adds that waiting for the current presidential election to end is one as well.
"It's a closing of a chapter with [President] Obama stepping out," she says. "It's one of those moments of reflection where it's like, 'Whoa, that was eight years ago.' I remember where I was in 2008 when Obama was elected, and now here we go into the future. We'll see what happens next."