How to celebrate Jewish punk rock legend Joey Ramone’s 70th birthday

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JORDAN PALMER

It’s hard to imagine your rock idols as older men. But, today, May 19, 2021, would have been Jewish punk rock god and lead singer of the Ramones, Joey Ramone’s 70th birthday.  I have a feeling he’d be rocking as hard as ever if he were still alive.

Who Was Joey Ramone

Joey was born Jeffrey Hyman, but as the other members of his band, he took on the surname Ramone, which came from a pseudonym that The Beatles‘ Paul McCartney used early in his career. The band was formed in 1974, emerging from the now legendary New York punk rock scene and the club CBGB. Rock historians would write, “The band combined its varied musical influences, sped up to a breakneck pace, to create sound that was fresh, unique and infectious.”

Joey wrote many of the band’s biggest hits includiing  “Beat on the Brat,” “I Remember You,” “Sheena Is a Punk Rocker,” “I Wanna Be Sedated,” “Rock ‘n’ Roll High School,” “Do You Remember Rock ‘n’ Roll Radio?” and “Merry Christmas (I Don’t Want to Fight Tonight).”

The Ramones influenced generations of punk and rock groups before splitting in 1996 after a farewell tour. Joey passed away from lymphoma on April 15, 2001. His debut solo album, Don’t Worry About Me, was released posthumously in February 2002.

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A month after his pasding, Joey was inducted posthumously into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame along with The Ramones.

Ramone’s milestone birthday will be celebrated tonight with a virtual “Birthday Bash” that will be streamed for free at JoeyRamone.com.