Happy Birthday Joey Ramone!

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Punk legend Joey Ramone was born on this day in 1951. Why not celebrate by cranking "53rd & 3rd"and reading Nick Gillespie and Brian Doherty's classic "I Dreamed I Saw Joey Ramone Last Night: The P.C. eulogizing of a punk rocker":

Joey Ramone's beautifully weird-looking body had barely gone cold when he was eulogized not simply as the vocalist for arguably the most influential band of the past 30 years but as a politically engaged performer whose progressive bona fides were every bit as undeniable as those of Sting, Bono, and Barbra Streisand. Indeed, within hours of shuffling off his mortal coil, Joey Ramone, known for singing songs such as "Cretin Hop" and "Teenage Lobotomy," had been resurrected as Joe Hill.

Forget that the Ramones made their reputation with songs that sketched an irresistible world filled with dumb and often explicitly anti-social fun. (The uninitiated can get a good sense of this from the titles of some of the band's signature tunes, which include "Beat On the Brat," "Now I Wanna Sniff Some Glue," "You're Gonna Kill That Girl," "Gimme Gimme Shock Treatment," and "I Wanna Be Sedated.")

For some righteously left-wing critics, such anarchic, aimless pleasure must always, in the final analysis, give way to something deeper, something more serious. Ironically, it must give way to precisely the sort of pedantically earnest musical messaging that helped provoke punk rock—and the Ramones—into existence in the first place.

Read the rest here.

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  1. “arguably the most influential band of the past 30 years”

    hahahahahahahahahahaha….. omfg that’s funny.

  2. a politically engaged performer whose progressive bona fides were every bit as undeniable as those of Sting, Bono, and Barbra Streisand

    But infinitely less insufferable.

    And Dee Dee wrote 53rd & 3rd.


  3. And Dee Dee wrote 53rd & 3rd.

    Dee Dee wrote all their best songs.

    Johnny was way more rightwing than Joey was left.

    Ann Coulter is one of their biggest fans

    The Ramones were the best live band ever.

  4. Ironically, it must give way to precisely the sort of pedantically earnest musical messaging that helped provoke punk rock-and the Ramones-into existence in the first place.

    I’d just like to say this gig sucks!

  5. +1 to jasno. I’ve never understood why so many people think the Ramones were such a fantastic band. They’re not bad, but I can easily come up a couple dozen or more better ones.

  6. Nice blog. I just started blogging today.

    thanks for doing what you do.

  7. It must be an L.A. thing, because the rest of the world doesn’t worship the Ramones.

  8. It must be an L.A. thing, because the rest of the world doesn’t worship the Ramones.

    Pretty popular in Lower Alabama, Louisiana,Lower Arkansas and presumably Los Angeles so yeah definitely LA and pretty much everywhere else.

    Fuckin’ greatest live band ever

  9. All I have to say is “Bonzo Goes to Bitburg” http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P3Na0-ZUd_4

  10. Innovators – yes. Good music – no

  11. Some of The Ramones’ music is quite terrific although I’ll admit that I’m not terribly familiar with their oeuvre.

    Right now, I’m really into The Damned.

  12. Never saw them live, so can’t attest to that, but never was really into them. I think they were a little before my time.

    That being said, I agree that they were innovative, and I must say that there definitely are bands that are only so-so recorded, but that totally blow the doors off live. Oingo Boingo is a band that I thought was incredible live, but no where near as good recorded.

    And they also have a song about capitalism, regarding it in a positive light, which has been pointed out on this very website before.

  13. The Ramones are from Queens, you dicks. Most of you won’t understand how that’s significant, so I’ll tell you: Christopher Walken is from Queens. Need I say more?

    “The ice…is gonna break. Do you know…who I am?”

  14. The KKK took my baby away.

  15. Fun-fun-fun live band.
    Wierdly, I caught them live in Brazil in 94. [Little known fact: brazilian girls like to take their tops off at concerts]

    Their music in general is just meh.

  16. I miss Joey Ramone. And Joe Strummer. And Country Dick Montana. And Johnny Cash, etc, etc.

    I don’t miss Kurt Cobain.

  17. I love that one song they did.

    Over and over. On every album. For twenty years.

  18. I found the argument that the Ramones were not a left-wing band convincing, but didn’t see anything in it that suggested left-wing critics praising Joey Ramone on the occasion of his death were wrong about his personal politics.

  19. NEW UPDATED EDITION of “On The Road With The Ramones.”
    With new pages, photos and info on what’s been happening to the legacy of the Ramones since 2003.
    This is a MUST-HAVE book for all Ramones fans. Based around the story of Monte A. Melnick who was the Ramones tour manager (and much more) throughout their entire career (1974-1996, and 2,263 live shows). It’s an inside look from the people who were actually there witnessing and experiencing all the extreme highs and lows of one of rock’s greatest bands. The book is packed with interviews from the Ramones and many many more people who where very close to the band. There is over 250 photographs and pictures of memorabilia Monte collected along the way. Buy it, read it and then revisit their albums. You’ll never look at the Ramones in the same light.

  20. I’ve already said everything I could possibly say about the Ramones.

  21. Nobody ever remembers the song “Maria Bartiromo”.

  22. The documentary “End of the Century” is great if you are any sort of Ramones fan.

  23. Greetings from Finland. Some brain damaged wrote that ramones is not known in the world. Hah-ha, could not be more wrong !! It has been so very fabulous in Europe through all it’s history that only Beatles and Rolling Stones beat it with numbers. There are still thousands and thousands of fans who sware on the name of Ramones. There are not many bands who have influenced on music as much. And they came and brought rock’n roll back !! Real music was dying, they came and saved it. There where zombies on lists and then music started to live again. This is voice from Europe.

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