New York rockers the Ramones are one of the most influential punk rock bands of all time. Their musical reach spans generations and genres to give misfits all over the world a voice through the power of song.
In tribute to the life of drummer Tommy Ramone, who passed away on July 11, 2014, here is a look at the Ramones' 10 best songs.
“Do You Remember Rock 'n' Roll Radio?”
“Do You Remember Rock 'n' Roll Radio?” is one of the Ramones' most developed compositions, thanks in part to the production of Phil Spector. The track has a 1950's throwback vibe enhanced by a full horn section and keyboards.
Featuring the Ramones' unofficial catchphrase “Gabba Gabba Hey,” “Pinhead” is one of the New York rockers' most rugged tracks. The song is a call for misfits, freaks and weirdos to stand as one against the mainstream majority.
“I Wanna Be Sedated”
The Ramones' ode to disconnection “I Wanna Be Sedated” epitomizes the feeling of not belonging in a bustling world. “Just put me in a wheelchair, get me on a plane/Hurry hurry hurry before I go insane/I can't control my fingers I can't control my brain/Oh no no no no no,” Joey Ramone sings on the Road to Ruin single.
The Ramones get political on the track “Havana Affair,” which was released on the band's debut album. The Red Hot Chili Peppers covered the song for the 2003 compilation, We're a Happy Family: A Tribute to Ramones, with then-guitarist John Frusciante adding absolutely heart-piercing back-up vocals to the already stellar track.
“Beat on the Brat”
“Beat on the Brat” is one of the most fun Ramones songs to sing. Consisting of only six lines that roll off the tongue, the song is an all-time favorite amongst generations of fans.
“Rock 'n' Roll High School”
“Rock 'n' Roll High School” is teenage angst at its musical best. Appearing on the soundtrack for the film of the same name, “Rock 'n' Roll High School” has become one of the Ramones' most iconic songs.
“Judy Is a Punk”
Fast and furious, “Judy Is a Punk” is a perfect punk rock single with a playing time of just 92 seconds. Wes Anderson payed tribute to the track with a fantastic montage in his 2001 film “The Royal Tenenbaums.”
“Sheena Is a Punk Rocker”
The upbeat track “Sheena Is a Punk Rocker” captures the youthful energy that the Ramones exuded throughout their career. Rooted in the fun-loving surf rock genre, “Sheena Is a Punk Rocker” is a track that transcends the punk label.
“I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend”
“I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend” is like a delicious piece of candy. Surrounded by a rough punk exterior, the track is a really a sweet love song at its core. Tommy Ramone holds the sole writing credits for this single, which appeared on the Ramones' eponymous debut album
The Ramones are at their best on the bouncy, gritty pop masterpiece “Blitzkrieg Bop.” Though the song failed to make the charts when it was first released in 1976, it went on to rank number 18 on Rolling Stone's list of the Best Guitar Songs of All Time.