GABBA GABBA HEY! MUSICAL IN BERLIN, GERMANY ON MAY 10-22, 2005
Copyright¸ 2005---> : Bram van Schaik (famous journalist who lives in
Netherlands) and Jari-Pekka Laitio-Ramone.
Tommy Ramone is musical director of a Gabba Gabba Hey! musical
featuring the music of the Ramones. More information of the musical
Loud & fast & 70 minutes, like a... Ramones
What? Going to a whát? A Ramones musical? You must have been outta your
Well, I must confess that some of my friends thought I had gone mad. But I
picked up my sword, saddled the horse and did the job, drove 670
kilometres to Berlin (and 670 back) to see Gabba Gabba Hey, The Musical.
Though I didn't had the slightest idea what to expect and only had a few
reviews on the internet to refer to, I must say: it was great fun! The
show surprised me in a very positive way. No doubt about it, this is a
It was saturday May 14, a rainy evening, and it was very crowded in Berlin
`cause there was a huge multi-cultural festival going on all weekend and
we had to cross the Kreuzberg area where it all happened on our way to the
Columbia Club. Nice venue, I must say, lots of history, but too rainy to
check it out carefully. We were late, too late for the opening at 7.30 pm.
But we were lucky, there was only one show that evening - the club first
scheduled two shows in case their might be a run on the tickets - so show
started at 8.00 pm sharp. Only 70 minutes later it ended, just like a...
Ramones gig, yes indeed.
It was speedy, it was funny (even for a Dutch guy who doesn't think in
first place about Germans when asked who are the funniest people he met),
the stage looked good (plain but effective, the right atmosphere) and the
changes between te scenes were smart & fast. The dialogues were in German,
with a little NYC slang, the songs in English, it all matched well. The
actors grew in their roles (it was their fifth perfomance since the
première on May 10), the youngsters but especially the eminence Rolf
Zacher whom I must have heard on several Amon Duül albums way back in the
seventies. I liked it and I was tapping my feet and stood with a constant
smile on the face (not
at the moment I dropped the SD-card from my digicam, which I fortunally
found within' seconds). I'm not a frequent visitor of musicals. Saw Jesus
Christ Superstar in London in 1972 when I was a
15 years old schoolboy and The Lion King only six months ago as an aged
daddy with my teenage daughter and between those two I missed them all -
with reason. But this one I wouldn't have missed, oh no!
Forgotten Idols did a great job as `orchestra of the house' and it was
really cool when guitarplayer Stefan Fiebig entered the stage as the
reïncarnation of Johnny Thunders, playing and singing the
Heartbreakers song Personality Crisis. For an average vistor the music
must sound loud and fast, but the more experienced ones knew the Ramones
songs were played on `album-speed': you could understand the lyrics word
by word. No problem, as long as the volume stays okay (=loud). In the
finale Forgotten Idols showed us how it really ought to be with a blasting
version of R.A.M.O.N.E.S. Yeah, that was a great encore.
Wé had the luck
to see NYC-vamp Jayne County in one of her two guestperfomances and that
gave the show a nice extra. Huh, did I say nice? Yes, Jayne was adorable
exposing her charmes and singing us not only I Wanna Be Your Girlfriend
(orig. I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend, you might know that...) but also the
naughty song If You
Don't Wanna Fuck Me Baby, Better Fuck Off!
Well, we fucked off, but only after we said hi to Jayne. She was charming
and friendly, just as the rest of the crew we spoke briefly afterwards.
But Jayne or no Jayne, if there's an opportunity, I'm gonna see this show
again. Gabba Gabba Hey, for sure!
(Thanks again Bram van Schaik, who's in a pic with Jayne
County. Photographer: Yvon (Bram's wife))