Joey Ramone was born sixty-six years ago today. The cover of their groundbreaking first album is on the t-shirt above. The Ramones first four albums- “Ramones”, “Leave Home”, “Rocket to Russia” and “Road to Ruin” were flawless. The four albums were all released between April 1976 and September 1978. After that the quality fell off some but there was still greatness to be found on each of their albums. The Ramones were my kind of group- their songs were short and to the point. You aren’t going to find needless ten minute jamming on a Ramones album and at a Ramones concert you weren’t going to get some ten minute guitar solo- they could get 5 or 6 songs into that ten minutes.
I saw them two times in concert in 1986 and in 1995. I met the future Mrs. Postcard at the show in 1995. I didn’t know it but she was also at the same show in 1986. So not only are The Ramones one of my all-time favorite groups but they also played an even larger role in my life.
One of the best record reviews I’ve ever read was from the late 70’s- ” Sure The Ramones are dumb, but they are my kind of dumb.” Indeed.
It’s hard to think of a group that have had worse luck. All four members from the first album- Joey, Johnny, Dee Dee and Tommy are all gone, only one- Tommy living past the age of 55. As a group they should have been huge, instead they were one of the most influential groups in rock history, sort of like another New York City group- The Velvet Underground.