Books on the Ramones – Mayhem, Debauchery, and Legacy
Punk or not – you can’t deny the importance of the Ramones. The legendary punk rock band has left a crater-sized impact on the music world. Much like their music, their story is a wild ride filled with comedic, often disturbing memories to soak up. Wanna get to know the famed players who formed the band and their history? Then, read the books below that make up my list of the best books on the Ramones (listed in alphabetical order).
Commando: The Autobiography of Johnny Ramone
by Johnny Ramone
Fast-paced and a quick read, Commando: The Autobiography of Johnny Ramone is straight and to the point. The man doesn’t cut corners, and he certainly saw life as a Ramone to be his “job.” It’s a different look, I must say, and adds a business perspective to how one might find success in creating a band. Please don’t let that bore you! There are plenty of crazy moments to help you turn the pages and fill you in on Johnny Ramone’s side to the bat-sh*t crazy life of being a Ramone.
Hey Ho Let’s Go: The Story of the Ramones
By Everett True
Dedicated to the history and influence of the Ramones, Hey Ho Let’s Go: the Story of the Ramones will open your eyes to the significance the band had on the world. Songwriting, simple cords, and attitude – the Ramones have inspired countless musicians and bands throughout the years to put their own minds to the craft of putting a song and band together. If you want the gritty details of punk rock’s Godfathers – this is the book for you.
I Slept with Joey Ramone: A Punk Rock Family Memoir
by Mickey Leigh
Joey Ramone might have one of the most iconic looks in punk rock history – the glasses, the stance, the hair, should I go on? If you want the history beyond the legendary look, and punk rock icon, then I Slept With Joey Ramone: A Punk Rock Family Memoir is a must. You get background on his life, the music revolution he was part of, and his legacy. Plus, who doesn’t want to open a book titled “I Slept with Joey Ramone?” You have to be a little curious, no?
Lobotomy: Surviving the Ramones
by Dee Dee Ramone
The mind who wrote “Chinese Rocks” and “53rd and 3rd” gave us a stellar autobiography called Lobotomy: Surviving the Ramones. Captivating and with a twisted tone, Dee Dee Ramones’ writing is by far my favorite of the books listed on this post. Countless quotes fill the pages that one might relate to when it comes to a troubled past, substance abuse, or the feeling of loneliness each punk seems to go through. And the tales will let you know exactly what it meant to be a Ramone, from creation to world fame.
On the Road with the Ramones
Frank Meyer and Monte Melnick
The Ramones started a revolution in New York City and then hit the road to plague America with the new genre. If you want the inside scoop of touring with the Ramones, read On the Road with the Ramones. Think about all the venues, the personalities, the antics, and you have the ins and outs of this book. The raw, gritty stuff and the fast-paced life we all crave to know.
Punk Rock Blitzkrieg: My Life as a Ramone
by Marky Ramone and Richard Herschlag
Before stepping in the large shoes that are Tommy Ramone, Marc Bell played drums in plenty of bands that rocked the early punk rock scene in New York. By 1978, he would be christened with the name Marky and become a Ramone touring with the band for 15 years (not consecutively). His tell-all book titled Punk Rock Blitzkrieg: My Life as a Ramone reveals all the messed-up ups and downs of his life, including the time he was kicked out of the Ramones and his road to recovery.