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Joey Ramone

Joey Ramone's signature bleat was the voice of punk rock in America. Sporting a leather jacket and torn jeans (like his bandmates) and hiding his face behind a pair of sunglasses and a thick shock of dark hair, the lanky Ramone helped define punk's early image as well, and his two-plus-decade tenure as frontman of the Ramones made him a countercultural icon.

Ramone was born Jeffrey Hyman on May 19, 1951 (though he frequently claimed the year was 1952) in Forest Hills, part of the Queens section of New York City. Rock & roll gave the teenaged Joey Ramone an escape from his parents' divorce and he began playing in glam-influenced bands in the early '70s. He co-founded the Ramones in 1974 with friends John Cummings and Douglas Colvin, upon which point all three adopted Ramone as their stage surname. Joey Ramone initially served as the group's drummer before switching to vocals and having his former spot taken by manager Tommy Erdelyi. The Ramones quickly became regulars at the Bowery club CBGB, and their brief, rapid-fire concert style became the stuff of legend.

When the Ramones recorded their debut album in 1976, it heralded the true birth of punk rock; although groups like the Stooges, MC5, and New York Dolls laid the groundwork, the Ramones' hooky, three-chord songwriting, cheerfully dumb humor, and boundless energy created the blueprint that countless punk bands would follow in the decades to come. Their 1976 tour of the U.K. helped ignite that country's punk scene as well, and their impact on American music was never more apparent than in the '90s, when a legion of punk-pop bands who never could have existed without the Ramones' music took that sound to the top of the charts.

Despite their enormous influence, a career that spanned two decades, and a handful of indisputably classic albums, the Ramones never became stars in their own right -- even though the sound they'd pioneered came to dominate popular music during most of the '90s and even though the band recorded during that decade with a newly clean and sober focus. After touring with the 1996 Lollapalooza festival, the Ramones concluded that the stardom they'd always coveted was never to be and they disbanded before the end of the year.

Although he had released the collaborative EP In a Family Way with his brother Mickey Leigh in 1994 (under the name Sibling Rivalry), Joey Ramone largely shunned the spotlight following the breakup. He did make occasional public appearances and worked for a time as a radio DJ; toward the end of the decade, he also began working sporadically on a solo record. He assembled a band featuring guitarist Daniel Rey, bassist Andy Shernoff (ex-Dictators), and drummer Frank Funaro (Cracker) and played several gigs in the New York area. Sadly, before the record could be completed, Ramone succumbed to lymphatic cancer on April 15, 2001; he was 49 years old.

Shortly after Ramone's passing, his last studio recordings were finished and made available as Don't Worry About Me. In 2012, a posthumous collection of unreleased demos titled ...Ya Know? was completed by the Ramones' producers and Joey's former musician friends. ~ Steve Huey, Rovi
full bio

Comments

bill57632
saw them at the tower with joan jett...never saw so much leather!.... R I P Joey
kgoodman272
Joey and the rest of the Ramone "Brothers" are all missed
RIP Tommy Ramone......
Miss u Joey
Joey will always remain one of the best!!!
I cry missing the ramones met them after a show new york RAMONES FOR EVER!!!!!
The best punker ever #Joey
juliepharis
Joey...you'l l always be with us man...
The king of punk
The best punk band ever! Long live the Ramones!
Don't read this because it actually works. You will be kissed on the nearest possible Friday by the love of you life. Tomorrow will be the best day of your life. However if you don't post this you will die in 2 days. Now you've started reading so don't stop. This is so scary put this on at least 5 songs in 143 minutes. When done press f6 and your lover's name will come on the screen in big letters. This is so scary because it actually works
Love ya Joey
Whatever.
teamr530
The undisputed king of punk rock!!!!!!
The ramones were a great band wish u saw them live b**ches u dont now what punk is the s**t they play now wont pay s**t to see any of them
Long live the king of punk!!!!!!!! !
dpheyl
Saw them in a small upstairs pub in Madison WI (1983). Just one week after seeing U2 in the same small upstairs pub.
He sounds great without the Ramones, even.
gnob264
The Ramones made punk possible
RIP Joey.....
I saw the Ramones many times 70s the end. and Still I have adopted a Ramones Lifestyle since the 70s
gatkinson80
I saw them twice and have never had more fun.Joey was an unlikely hero, and incredibly humble... R.I.P. Joey,Dee Dee, and Johnny.
I think a lot of people took the Ramones for granted because they were always there and playing great live shows, but now they are gone forever and are dearly missed!
Many years ago in Denver at the old Rainbow music hall I had the time of my life with The Ramones. Not only a great show but after the show with my buddies and all four members. My prize album still remains a signed first Ramones cover along with a few picks. Saw them multiple times and Joey also remembered us from that night in Denver... Gabba Gabba you Pinheads
I just remember him from a "Simpsons" episode and a line in a Bill Shatner song.
Missing Joey and the rest of The Ramones!
RIP Joey...
Great foundational stuff. CORE.
flynnbm4
One of the tallest rock n rollers ever. Krist Novoselic too.
RIP joey.
he wasnt as good as the ramones though.
Actually, the cover "What a Wonderful World" is the best I ever heard. I remember this came on one of the Supernatural episodes.
msheydayi
joey and dee dee FOREVER!
bromide01
Lame.

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