The Ramones

Sparks Of Insanity By Vinny "Bond" Marini Wednesday, February 07, 2007


The Ramones...slide back to Forest Hills, NY in the mid 60's. John Cumming and Tommy Erdelyi were both playing in a band called the Tangerine Puppets.

In the early 70's the Ramones were born. Tommy was the manager of the band which included John on guitar, Jeffrey Hyman on drums, Douglas Colvin on rhythm guitar and Richie Stern on bass. Inspired by the fact that Paul McCartney used the pseudonym of Paul Ramone when checking into hotels, Douglas changed his name to Dee Dee Ramone. The other members of the band followed suit shortly afterward. Hyman became Joey Ramone, Cummings became Johnny Ramone.

DeeDee realized soon afterward that he could not sing and play guitar so he switched to bass guitar. Joey took over vocals, but could not sing and play drums so Tommy jumped behind the skins.

They played their first show at the Performance Studio in NYC on March 30, 1974. The group had only a few songs to play and they all clocked in at under two minutes. Most of their song titles began with "I Don't Wanna...". The band became a fixture at CBGB's in the lower east side of Manhattan. Their sets were so short, they would have to play them twice to fill the time allotment.

They were signed to Sire Records in 1975.. Their first album, "Ramones" was recorded for $6,400.00.

Outside of NYC the band was greeted with hostility. In 1976 the went across the pond to England and their appearances there helped to galvanize the UK punk rock scene inspiring future members of The Clash and The Damned.

Though they were inspiring musicians from England to Los Angeles and recorded the critically aclaimed album "Rocket To Russia", they were still not accepted anywhere outside NYC.

Soon afterward Tommy got tired of touring and was replaced by Marc Bell (Marky Ramone).

After the band appeared in the movie "Rock 'n' Roll High School" in 1979, legendary producer Phil Spector produced their 1980 album "End of the Century."

Tensions between the band and the producers caused the band to write off the album as a failure. The public agreed and the album bombed.

1983 saw Marky fired due to alcoholism and replaced by Richard Reinhardt (Richie Ramone). Richie left in 1987 and was replaced by Clem Burke (Elvis Ramone) from Blondie. Burke lasted two shows and then was replaced by a clean and sober Marky.

Dee Dee left after 1089's Brain Drain and was replaced by Christopher Joseph Ward (C.J. Ramone). Dee Dee continued to contribute to the music by lending lyrics to later songs.

Dee Dee also became rapper Dee Dee King for a period of time. It was an embarrassment to all concerned.

Joey and Johnny were political antagonists and this tension lasted throughout the bands history. Then Johnny stole Joey's girlfriend and married her, causing even more tension. The two did not talk for years afterward.

In 1995 Joey was diagnosed with Lymphoma.

In 2002 The Ramones were inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall of Fame. Two months later Dee Dee dies of a heroin overdose.

In 2004 the documentary "End Of The Century: The Story Of The Ramones" was released in theatres. Johnny passed away of prostate cancer almost exactly as the film was release on September of 2004.

The Ramones.. you loved them or hated them... you were never ever ambivalent about them...

16 Of Your Sparks

  1. Anndi Says:
  2. Ah yes... regularly featured on my HS student radio time slot...


    Thanks Vince.. GREAT tunes!

  3. Mags Says:
  4. Just so you know, "You" freaked me out yesterday...I was shopping at Whole foods here in Ct and I turned around to see...YOU!

    Honestly-this man was identicle to your pictures. So much so that I stared at him until he gave me a dirty look!!!

    It was good to see "you"! ;)

  5. Unknown Says:
  6. You know I can't hear it, but I love the Ramones!!

  7. Julie Says:
  8. Whoa... alot of research, huh? Good job Vinny.

  9. Anonymous Says:
  10. Loved my boys. Saw the Ramones perform live probably a dozen times. Last show was at Hammerjacks in Baltimore. So glad I got to see them then.

    Hope all is well, Vince!--Gretchen

  11. BeckEye Says:
  12. For some reason, your blog is all screwy in my browser today. Weird.

    Ramones are cool, regardless. :)

  13. Peg Says:
  14. Cool info...I never knew most of this. That's why I love your blog--always fresh and interesting. Had you been talking about "Fifty Cent" or something, I'd be feeling REALLY old!

  15. Tisha! Says:
  16. AWESOME! The Ramones are great Bond baby, I so enjoyed listening and learning more about them, thanks sweetie!

  17. Mags Says:
  18. (Looks around and pouts)'re busy.


    Mags' bored.

    (Hope you're well!!)

  19. Maryfly Says:
  20. oh yeah baby! Love me some Ramones!

  21. Unknown Says:
  22. Excellent, Vinny!

    My fave is "Hey! Ho! Let´s go!" - it was covered by my beloved German Punkrock Band "Die Toten Hosen", too.

    Have you visited this already the The Ramones Museum in Berlin online already?

    If you ever come to germany I´ll take you there if you like to =)

    I´m sorry I didn´t make earlier to sit back on THE COUCH - we´ve had a car accident on the freeway and Luis was isnside, too. We´re alright, but my mind is still a mess...

  23. Fred Says:
  24. I was never a big fan. I can take 'em or leave 'em...

  25. Lizza Says:
  26. Such an influential band. Me likey!

  27. Tisha! Says:
  28. miss ya darling, hope you're doing well...hug and kiss

  29. thanks everyone for your comments.. will be back on track on Monday

  30. As promised, I'm baaaaccccckkkkk.... hope you are having "fun" in Hotlanta.... ;-) Will see you on Monday...


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