I discovered the Ramones in an odd way. I was reading a magazine about recording gear. In the back of the magazine they would always throw in some record reviews, just as padding. Usually these reviews were for jazz and “Klazzick” rock stuff that really didn’t care about. But one review was this incredibly angry spew of irritation and scab picking. This group from New York, according to the reviewer, were all about being stupid and trying to make being stupid seem cool. He hated everything about the Ramones. EVERYTHING!
The phrase I remember vividly was screaming about how the guitar sounded like nothing so much as white noise. To me that sounded beautiful.
In a world and a time that was promoting Foreigner, Bob Welch and Fleetwood Mac music where the insistent beat was propelled by a white noise guitar, that was beauty of the highest order.
I bought the record the next day. I was disappointed in the record jacket. The black and white photo wasn’t gritty enough. The record certainly was though. I loved it all, from Blitzkrieg Bop straight through to Today Your Love, Tomorrow the World.
I went to see the Ramones a lot. Saw them often in LA and then in Germany. In the mid to late 70’s only a fool would not concede that they were the greatest band in the world. I saw them at some outdoor show, again in Germany, and it was pretty obvious it was the end of the band. Instead of embarrassing themselves they quit. But the music didn’t quit.
Their entire recorded output sounds like a greatest hits collection to me. I wish I’d worked on their movie. I wish I could hear them always and watch Dee Dee jump and swoop while Johnny took his stance. Johnny is still the fastest right hand in show business.
You can talk a lot about the Ramones influence. They changed the world just by being the things that they were.
I promise I’ll get the Halloween podcast up by the end of next week. BEFORE Halloween.
Bitch Boys – Road Racer
Kurt Baker – Cruel To Be Kind
Jonathan Edwards – Sunshine
Ramones – I Want You Around
Yo La Tengo – Little Honda
Sahara Hot Nights – Rockaway Beach
Jan And Dean – Popsicle
Boss Martians – Walk Away
Shonen Knife – Chinese Rock
Dahlmanns – Dancing With Joey Ramone
Miriam – Questioningly
Flamin’ Groovies – It Won’t Be Wrong
Stems – Make You Mine
Del Shannon – So Long Baby (live)
Lolas – I’m Flying
Helen Love – Debbie Love Joey
Johnny Ramone – Viva Las Vegas
Teresa Brewer – I Love Mickey
Joey Ramone – I Got Knocked Down (But I’ll Get Up)
Ronnie Spector – She Talks To Rainbows
Dee Dee Ramone – I Don’t Want To Die In The Basement
Les Cole And The Echos – Be Bopping Daddy
Sparkles – No Friend Of Mine
Troggs – From Home
Joe Clay – Sixteen Chicks
Red Hot Chili Peppers – Havana Affair
Dropkick Murphy – The Guantlet
Adam Faith – It’s Alright
Shonen Knife – Pinhead
Nelson Riddle – Batusi A-go-go
PJ Soles – Rock And Roll High School
Ramouns – Little Deuce Coupe
Los Planatronics – Sheena Is A Punk Rocker
Ramonetures – She’s The One
Jessie Malin – Questioningly
Joey Ramone – What A Wonderful World
John Frusciante – Today Your Love Tomorrow The World
Small Faces – I’m Only Dreaming
Elvis Presley – Steadfast Loyal And True (acapella)