4.18.01

4.18.01

It’s some Wednesday night in April, 2001, and after working a long day at Easy Street Records, I head down to the Lava Lounge for some relaxation (read: alcohol). There’s the guys from The Briefs spinning records that move from punk rock to new wave, and beyond. DOA, T. Rex, X, The Damned, Gary Numan, Richard Hell, Devo, and so much more… But most of all, tonight, it’s The Ramones. I’m drinking for Joey tonight, and I think we all are. This is Seattle 2001, and it’s a memorial that rocks. Death hasn’t hit this town this hard since Kurt did what he did, but this is different. When Kurt went away, I don’t think I heard Nirvana played in a club or bar in Seattle for like five years. It was so solemn and quiet — the period of mourning. It’s over now; it’s okay to play your favorite song off of Bleach now, on the jukebox between The Velvet Underground and The Buzzcocks. It’s okay to throw on In Utero while working behind the record store counter. It’s all right now.

I close my eyes as “53rd & 3rd” hits. Joey gets a different kind of reverence here. It’s the New Orleans funeral of rock n’ roll. It’s a full on celebration of life and living. Death becomes the brat we’re all beating on, and yeah, forever — I’m singin’ “I’ll remember you…” Even these words — written while drunk and smoking and listening to cuts from Rocket To Russia and Road To Ruin as they’re thrown in between Suicidal Tendencies and David Bowie, is a work of joy. It’s a celebration of what he gave to us, not what was taken away. Drunk thought: joy to Joey is just one letter. “E” for energy and excitement and everything he was and will forever be. We love him, and he will be so missed, but we will remember him with all the life of rock n’ roll right now and loud, and not push him away into the quiet place of sadness. Joey Ramone will not be silent. Put on The Ramones right now, and play it loud. Joey, we love you, forever and always.

Top 5 Ramones Memories

Getting pissed off at my dad for insisting on pronouncing it “The Rah-moan-ees.”

Sneaking into a Nomeansno show when I was too young to see shows and getting treated to a full set of Ramones covers.

Seeing them play live in Vancouver many years ago. It was the end, the end of the 80’s…

Getting drunk in high school at some illegal late night beach party and listening to The Ramones played too loud on a crappy boom box. Gabba gabba, oh yeah.

Tonight, Wednesday, at the Lava Lounge — seeing old friends making new ones, while outbursts of Ramones songs bring the bar together in impromptu singalongs. Triggering memories and emotions of the past and giving the gift of rock n’ roll to the future.

Hey! Ho! Let’s go!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *

Cancel reply

Recently on Ink 19...

  • Gregg Allman, RIP
    Gregg Allman, RIP

    Michelle Wilson gives tribute to the voice of an angel. Gregg Allman, RIP.

  • Preservation Hall Jazz Band
    Preservation Hall Jazz Band

    So It Is (Legacy). Review by Bob Pomeroy.

  • From Montenegro to Moldova: The Best of SEEFest 2017
    From Montenegro to Moldova: The Best of SEEFest 2017

    For the twelfth year, the South East European Film Festival (SEEfest) in Los Angeles showcased an impressive lineup of new features and shorts. Lily and Generoso Fierro provide a festival wrap up and their picks for the films that you cannot miss.

  • Justin Townes Earle
    Justin Townes Earle

    Kids In The Street (New West Records). Review by James Mann.

  • Christian Scott
    Christian Scott

    Rebel Ruler (Ropeadope / Stretch Music). Review by Bob Pomeroy.

  • Kivanç Sezer
    Kivanç Sezer

    Turkish director Kivanç Sezer’s powerful debut feature, My Father’s Wings, puts the spotlight on the workplace safety crisis that is currently taking place in his homeland. Lily and Generoso Fierro spoke with Sezer at SEEFest 2017 about his film and his need to draw attention to this issue.

  • Temples
    Temples

    Supporting their just-released sophomore record, UK synth-pop poster boys, Temples, attracted an SRO crowd to one of Orlando’s premier nightspots.

  • Rat Film
    Rat Film

    Baltimore. Rats. A match made in Maryland.

  • Bishop Briggs
    Bishop Briggs

    Bishop Briggs brings a stacked bill of up and comers to Orlando for a sold-out party at The Social. Jen Cray joins in the fun.

  • Rumble: The Indians Who Rocked The World
    Rumble: The Indians Who Rocked The World

    There’s more than black music influencing the evolution of Rock and Roll. Native American rhymes and ideas are every bit as significant, once you know to look for them.

From the Archives