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FAREWELL TOMMY...


Mary Ellen

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Love them or hate them (I KNOW there's no in-between feelings for these guys), their story is told with love by Mr. McNeil. 

 

The story of the Ramones is the story of many bands and many bandmates.  Farewell Tommy. 

 

 

Legs McNeil Remembers Tommy Ramone

 

The least likely Ramone was the one who believed in them the most.

 

140713-the-ramones-legs-mcneil.jpg

Johnny Ramone, John Holmstrom (Punk Magazine editor), Tommy, Joey, Dee Dee, and Legs McNeil on July 22, 1976. Photo by Tom Hearn

 

WRITTEN BY
Legs McNeil

July 13 2014, 10:21 PM ET

My ex-fiancé told me, when she was breaking up with me, "I don't care about your opinions; I don't care what you think…."

As a writer, that nearly killed me. I'd become obsolete, in her eyes. In mine, too.

 

And yet, as seemingly everyone and everything that made up the 1970s New York punk scene dies off, publications from the Daily Beast to the New York Times to SPIN call me for my reactions, memories—and, yes, my opinions. I'm one of the last remaining eyewitnesses who remembers how much fucking fun it all was—and then has to try and translate all those dangerous, gorgeous memories into words.

 

Late Friday, Tommy Erdelyi, a.k.a. Tommy Ramone, drummer for one of the greatest bands of that or any era, died from cancer, at the age of 65. All four original members of the Ramones are gone, and it's time for me to write another memorial.

 

Snapshots.

Yeah, I get paid to write snapshots of moments in time.

How do you translate all those tiny flashes in your brain into a portrait of Tommy, the most unlikely Ramone of all? The shy guy who never lost his Hungarian accent or immigrant awkwardness, but had the vision to see that his three fellow mentally unstable bandmates had stumbled on to something truly life-changing?

 

When every young person in New York City at that time looked like a rock god, Tommy, God love him, looked like a plumber's apprentice. He and the Ramones translated all the world's phony beauty, yeah, all the world's ugliness, into something fast, funny, and hummable. They said, "Life sucks and we're crazy, but we're gonna play it loud and fast—and short--cause we know ya got things to do…"

 

140713-tommy-ramone-2.jpg

Tommy Ramone at Toad's Place, New Haven, Connecticut, January 5, 1978. Photo by Tom Hearn

 

I mean, how do you explain that Tommy was so enamored with Johnny Ramone in high school that he'd get jealous when Johnny would bully some other friend instead of him. Tommy always believed in Johnny's potential as a rock star—even after the failure with their first band, the Tangerine Puppets, because Johnny didn't think they were anywhere near as good as Leslie West's band the Vagrants? Or how Tommy eventually succeeded in getting Johnny—the most stubborn, close-minded man on the planet--to agree to give it one more shot in this new band that crazy Dee Dee kept saying should be called the Ramones?How do you explain that it was Tommy's cute little song "Animal Hop," about how everyone was bopping at the local dance, that Dee Dee got a hold of, and changed the title to

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"FAREWELL TOMMY"?!

Hope Lew didn't see this topic & think it was a farewell to "TOMMY TUNES"! Can't say I know TTunes, but I think he is 'Robin' (the Boy Wonder) to Lew as 'Batman'. Oops, we already have a 'Batman' here....

JK, Lew - hope this was not in poor taste. You'd BETTER NOT be rubbing off on me!

redd

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Redd...Totally cool...When I read this topic headline, I did think it was about the Tunester...The "ying" to my "yang"...

 

P.S.--Dont ever be gunshy about offending me or something being in poor taste...We all need to stop being so sensitive...Its only a message board...

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Don't pull on anyone's goat - not cool! (-;

O.K. Dear C-girl, you are right. We ARE off topic, but please don't call Lew a goat anymore or pull on his tail ;)

HAHAHA Just kidding. Thx for telling me the 'goat' bit was from Jimmy Fallon!

redd <3

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Note to Redd and Lew,

 

Thanks for clearing that up for me. I too thought I was dead or even worse thrown off the board when I saw this category. Whew!! Still, we will miss Tommy Ramone as we miss Joey, Dee Dee and Johnny, Thank God we have the records and the DVDs.

 

 

TOMMY TUNES

 

yOu'rE oNe FuNnY dUDe!!!   :lol:

 

AnneNR

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