DEE DEE RAMONE -LIVE AND INTERVIEW AT E.J.'S IN PORTLAND, OREGON,
JANUARY 19, 2000
Copyrightę 2000 -> for everything in this page by Jari-Pekka
Laitio-Ramone and Glenn Shires.
INTERVIEW BY: GLENN SHIRES
Almost a year ago, I finally had the chance to see Dee Dee Ramone. I live
in Eugene, Oregon, a bizarre hippie-dominated excuse for a town. Of
course, Dee Dee was playing in Portland, the "big city" 100 miles to the
north. I am not
exaggerating when I say the air was thick with excitement when I arrived
Portland. All along the street in front of the club, I saw flyers posted
everywhere that said "Dee Dee Ramone - Playing The Hits!" with a picture
Dee Dee onstage from the '70s. Ramones fans young and old packed
inside. I got there early enough to see the opening band, Portland's great
Fireballs Of Freedom (I think they sound like a cross between MC5 and
River). Finally, Dee Dee hit the stage and the crowd went nuts. He started
off with "Blitzkrieg Bop" and "Teenage Lobotomy." Half of the audience
along with every song, hoisting their cups in the air and splashing beer
over the band and their fellow fans. Dee Dee mostly played songs from the
first four Ramones albums. He also threw in a few Johnny Thunders covers.
was a blast! Meanwhile, I was climbing the walls and creeping around
behind the stage to take pictures.
knew the night wouldn't be complete until I interviewed Dee Dee. After
the show, I walked around the club looking for him or anyone else in the
band (GLENN AND HIS FRIEND ARE ON THIRD PICTURE WITH DEE DEE). I
had almost given up when I discovered that the dressing room was upstairs.
The narrow staircase leading to the room was jammed tight with all the
hardcore Ramones fans who wanted to meet their idol. When I finally made
inside, everybody was gathered around trying to talk to Dee Dee and
I managed to meet Dee Dee, shake his hand, and give him a tape of my old
band, the Suburban Legends. We talked for a few minutes about the
differences between New York and the west coast. I also had my picture
with him. The next thing I knew, a middle-aged punk rocker was inviting
Dee and Barbara to hang out at her house. I noticed the room clearing out.
think Dee Dee's bandmates were trying wrap things up so they could all get
some rest. Dee Dee's drummer, Chase Manhattan, was really friendly. He
suggested I call Dee Dee's hotel room in the morning and do the interview
phone. He gave me the number, and I decided to go get a few hours of
Early the next morning, as I blazed back down the freeway, I suddenly
realized that I had no way of recording a phone interview. As soon as I
home to Eugene, I raced to an electronics store and bought a tape recorder
that I could plug into the phone.
I began feeling extremely nervous as I dialed Dee Dee's number. Would he
there? Would he feel like doing an interview? I've interviewed several
famous musicians for different zines, but this was the first time I felt
truly apprehensive, probably because Dee Dee's music and lyrics have made
the biggest impression on me. But I didn't need to worry, because Dee Dee
was more than happy to field my questions...
GLENN SHIRES: Well, to start off, Dee Dee, I want
to thank you for playing
in Portland last night. It really meant a lot to me and some of my
We've been waiting for a long time, so we really appreciate you coming up
here and playing. It was a great show.
DEE DEE RAMONE: You know, I live in L.A. now, so
maybe I can play around here more.
GLENN SHIRES: That would be awesome.
DEE DEE RAMONE: 'Cause I had to drive up and then
I could play a few shows, y'know?
I wasn't playing before, really... yes I was! What am I thinking about?
I don't know, I thought it was supposed to be a hobby for me at this
It's getting more and more involved. I am starting to play again
professionally. I hope I can come back up here around October. I don't
to overdo it. I hope if I come once a year, or once every six months,
will still come and see me. I played in Spokane the other day. That was
really nice too. And I've been playing a lot in southern California.
that, I was playing with Mark sometimes in the Ramainz.
GLENN SHIRES: Did the Ramainz play some shows in
DEE DEE RAMONE: Yeah, we did last year... or last
summer, I think.
GLENN SHIRES: Were you living in California when
you played those shows?
[Someone knocks at Dee Dee's door.]
DEE DEE RAMONE: Let me just get the door real
GLENN SHIRES: OK.
[Dee Dee goes to the door and comes back.]
DEE DEE RAMONE: No, we just flew out here; me,
Mark and Barbara. When we came out
here, I really started liking California again. New York is really
GLENN SHIRES: Why is that?
DEE DEE RAMONE: Oh, it's a million reasons.
There's really nothing going on there
anymore. And economically, it's not feasible for artists or alternative
people to be there anymore. The only good thing they have is a good art
situation... for big artists. They have displays in museums and galleries.
But other than that, music has gotten taken over by another kind of crowd
people. I had more fun here last night than in New York. I mean, playing
there is fun for me, 'cause I was in the Ramones and all that. People
always come to see me. But other than that, I think I had more fun with
people here than in New York.
GLENN SHIRES: That's a huge compliment to us over
DEE DEE RAMONE: Well, it's valid though, if you
really think of it. You want to run
with your own kind. It seems like there are more of my own kind up here.
then there's the other side; the backlash against that... A lot of people
around here, I hope they don't feel they're being invaded. All of a sudden
people are finding out, y'know, Washington is the best place to live. I
some people are getting tired of it, so I'll try to keep it quiet
[laughing]! I might take off this summer for a month or two. Maybe I'll
up here to visit. I don't know if I'll call anybody. I might just goof
around and look at the city and see what lofts are like here. Then I'll
go back to L.A. It's nice because it's like a city, y'know? L.A. isn't
a city to me, sort of, but it's nice there. I like it more now than I ever
GLENN SHIRES: I just got the live Ramainz album a
few days ago. I ordered it from
the label and it came in the mail two days before you played, so it was
perfect timing. Are the Ramainz are still together? Will you do more shows
or is it over?
DEE DEE RAMONE: No [sorrowfully].
GLENN SHIRES: So the Ramainz are finished?
DEE DEE RAMONE: Yeah.
GLENN SHIRES: Oh, that's too bad.
DEE DEE RAMONE: I know, but it just didn't work
out. Mark has his other band [The
Intruders] and he's always touring, and he's very unpredictable. This is
first time where I ever had some kind of agreement ahead of time where we
would play; where I kind of knew what was gonna happen, and it still
work out. So, maybe I'm better off like this. I like to be more
anyway. I'm not the Ramones. I'm just Dee Dee Ramone. I think I'm starting
to... I love playing like the Ramones and sometimes I want to do things,
it's also my sense of humor, and I need to have something to keep moving
and motivating me, and my humor is that. All the Ramones are like that in
some way. Like Johnny Ramone will make statements like "This is suffering
its best." That's how he describes being in the Ramones. That's kind of
funny, y'know? It must make him feel safe to feel that way. But I want my
own thing, y'know? Sometimes I really love the Ramones so much and I like
some of their humor, like standing on those boxes. You know how Johnny and
used to stand on those boxes? I wish I had two of those boxes to stand on.
Our old manager Danny Fields used to goof on us and say, "You guys are
a bunch of trained seals!" So I don't know. OK, I wouldn't do it to be
show-bizzy now. I'd do it to be kitsch.
GLENN SHIRES: Right, I think Ramones fans would get
it. They would probably think it's funny.
DEE DEE RAMONE: Like when I had the Ramainz
together for the first rehearsals, Mark
started saying to me, "Why don't you dye your hair again and get a Ramones
haircut?" Well, I would do it, but I felt if I dyed my hair black--'cause
most of it's either gray or blond--I'd say, well, I'm gonna look ugly that
way. I'm gonna look even creepier. I'm not gonna look 25 years old. I am
what I am! So after awhile, when they wouldn't give me a break, I said,
"Let's all get wigs." I had us all wear Ramones wigs for the first few
rehearsals. I was so happy. It was so funny. I was going in the bathroom
and looking at myself in the mirror with this wig on. I would think of
ideas for theatrics, like Alice Cooper or anything like that. If I could
find a person
who looked exactly like Joey Ramone, I'd love for him to come up and do
"Pinhead" with me so he could hold the sign. I don't even know who he
be. He wouldn't have to be somebody famous, just someone who could go
through the motions. Now, if some people tried that, a lot of people would
get mad at them. But with me, people give me more of a break because I'm
more goofy and they know I'm just a clown; the comedian type. It's a very
punk attitude, but I never do anything deceitful. I back myself up. I'm
gonna go and be Dee Dee Ramone and go to a show and play all weird
that they've never heard, and then they say, "Oh, he's just using the
Ramones as a vehicle for his own personal success instead of respecting
Ramones." I get tired of artists doing that. It's different if a person is
just starting and they're 20 years old. But after awhile, if you've given
the world 25 years of music, they expect that from you. It's your duty.
That's the German in me, I guess.
GLENN SHIRES: Last night, you mostly played older
Ramones songs, but you had a few
new ones like "Hop Around" and "Rock'n'Roll Vacation in L.A." Do you have
more new songs that you plan on putting out, or playing live?
DEE DEE RAMONE: We have an album that we've
finished. It's coming out in Europe
this week. It's an all-new album. It's called "Hop Around" and it's like a
retro-Ramones album. Chris Spedding produced it. We played with him
sometimes. Then on the 29th, we're going to make a live album at The
Troubador in Los Angeles. Then we're going to make another studio album
because this guy from Other People's Music really screwed us up. Instead
of getting our album out, I think he's trying to sell his whole label and
make people take our album. If they want to put out our album, he makes
them take all of his old catalog, and nobody wants to do that. It's hard
enough to get
a deal as it is. He's out of his mind, but he did get us EMI in Canada.
he'll say things like, "Don't you want to be on EMI in Japan?" and I say,
"Yeah I wanted to go to Japan! I did the album a year and a half ago! I'm
going anyway. I'll just play my Ramones songs and everybody will be
But he did ruin my career--I mean, what little career I could have had. I
needed the album out to keep the momentum going. But I'm not upset, it's
just what happens. I'm just trying to defend myself because I've been
active creatively. I've been painting with my wife Barbara. I'd like to do
an exhibition in a gallery. I finished a new book last year and now I've
a deal on it. It's called Chelsea Horror Hotel.
GLENN SHIRES: Do you know when it's coming
DEE DEE RAMONE: No... my first book, Poison Heart,
is going to be reissued by the
same publishing company, Avalon Press. They took both books. They're going
to re-release that in May, and then hold up the other book. And people are
bidding for a movie deal on that.
GLENN SHIRES: Is that the movie Marky Ramone told
me about? He said it would be called Gabba Gabba Hey.
DEE DEE RAMONE: Oh, that movie probably won't
happen now. I wish it would.
GLENN SHIRES: What was the story behind it? Marky
said that some other bands would
play in the movie, and he said you were going to play with the Ramones
DEE DEE RAMONE: Yeah. I really wish it would
happen but it doesn't look good.
There's like a million problems with them. We'll see. I used to be a big
instigator--more than any of them--for a Ramones reunion. But I suspect
is always like a black comedy. So now that I've finally given up on
I just can't take their behavior anymore. I love the guys, but they are
pretty useless in a way. Out of friendship and love and everything else,
could have given the world some good music again. But they have their own
ideas which always conflict with being cooperative.
GLENN SHIRES: And most of them have their own solo
DEE DEE RAMONE: No, they don't. That's bullshit. I
never tried to use the Ramones
to my personal advantage. I didn't steal from the Ramones or create
illusions. But actually, the business will only take what they can imagine
would be the most successful. Joey was always the one in the most ideal
position to get a recording contract or anything like that. He could have
gotten a deal on Sony or anything real easily. I had to really struggle
everything I've got. Instead, he won't do anything with it, except talk to
hold everybody else back. He's really competitive. So, OK, fine. I really
care about him. I would've made a solo album with him or anything he
But the thing is, he keeps being very aggressive with a lot of talk. He's
been talking about a solo album since 1980. Where is it? Everybody's at
beck and call. And I did five or six solo albums with everybody fighting
with me because of the possiblity of having any minor success. They didn't
want it to compete with the Ramones.
GLENN SHIRES: A lot of your solo stuff is really
hard to find these days. I've
tried to search for it without much luck.
DEE DEE RAMONE: It's impossible! It's like a lost
chapter in my life, but y'know, I
was validly creative and at the same time I was still creating for the
Ramones. But I'm not trying to make a big issue out of it either. I don't
expect it to be, y'know, like the next big thing. It's just an example of
historical... I think it's an American folk art, rock'n'roll. And it has
be kept alive somehow, in some way to perform. It's part of our culture
right now it's antiquated. I like doing it, and I can't expect to be the
next Britney Spears, but so what? I'm happy. I don't like a lot of
that members of the Ramones are trying to create about their own self
How did Mark's show [with The Intruders] go?
GLENN SHIRES: I really enjoyed it. I thought they
were a great live band.
DEE DEE RAMONE: That's good! Well, y'know, the
depressing thing is that people say
it's a continuation of the Ramones.
GLENN SHIRES: But the Intruders don't sound exactly
like the Ramones. They
definitely have their own style.
DEE DEE RAMONE: They're not like the Ramones at
all! Why do people think they're a continuation of the Ramones?
GLENN SHIRES: I guess it's because of the name.
When people see the name "Marky
Ramone & The Intruders," they might assume it's a continuation of the
Ramones, when in fact it's a member of the Ramones making new music with a
DEE DEE RAMONE: Right. There's nothing wrong with
that. Maybe I shouldn't be so
picky but other people are, y'know. And then they'll say I don't count.
Well here I am! How do you like me? Let's play, you know what I
GLENN SHIRES: It's appalling that anyone would try
to discredit you because your
show last night was amazing. Especially for people like me, who were too
young to see you play with the Ramones. Last night was an awe-inspiring
experience for some of us. Maybe I'm going overboard, but it was such a
DEE DEE RAMONE: I think I have to calm down
because I'm very introverted and I have
really low self esteem. But I'm also very grateful that everything is
OK in my life, and I don't want to fuck it up. It's special to me, even if
lot of people wouldn't think I have it so great, or I should have this or
that. I don't know. I'm really happy because I'm not in trouble and I want
to stay out of trouble, y'know [laughing]? But the thing is, a lot of
younger people, when they come talk to me, they seem to like the Ramones
because they're troubled, and somehow they identify with the
GLENN SHIRES: That's for sure. Speaking as someone
who's been a Ramones fan for a
third of my life, the Ramones are huge part of who I am. I've grown up
their music, and all the songs really meant a lot to me growing up,
especially the songs you wrote. And I know I'm not alone. I'm just one of
many people like that.
DEE DEE RAMONE: So, like sometimes I get in a
position, and I put myself in it,
because I'm only human and I'm learning, y'know? It starts getting
overwhelming because a lot of issues come up with people talking to me. I
feel very parental to them. I don't want them to get hurt. But the main
thing is that I'm a musician and not a psychiatrist. I need to help
I got through a lot of stuff. So basically the only vehicle that I have is
my music, and punk rock music. If they think I can be in a fairly good
at my age, being a punk for 30 years or whatever, then maybe that's enough
of a good example for somebody like me to set for anybody. Of course, I
could be more helpful than that. But like if someone said to me, "Why
you come back to AA?" I'd say, "Well, I went to AA for ten years. I got
drugs. I'm happy." Everybody I know is a drug addict. They don't want to
give me drugs or take drugs with me. They want to talk to me about the
problems with taking drugs, which is pretty flattering, considering that
years ago I couldn't go anywhere without anybody asking me if I wanted
drugs: "Would you like this? Would you like some coke? What do you want?"
Just anything, y'know? Now people ask, "How did you do it?" After awhile,
realized I can't go to AA anymore. You know what? I'm not a teacher, and
I'm not learning... I'm living now.
GLENN SHIRES: That's a good way to look at it.
DEE DEE RAMONE: I made it and I'm OK, and all I'm
gonna do now is simplify all this
insanity and get up there and play with my band. I wish everybody good
I want everybody to be good and not get hurt, and I don't know what else
GLENN SHIRES: If you found a trustworthy record
label, would you try to re-release
any of your solo material that's gone out of print? I know a lot of
Ramones fans would love to get their hands on it.
DEE DEE RAMONE: I've been trying and trying to get
it worked out, and a lot of
people just ruined it for life. I don't know why. I think the best thing
for me to do is record those solo albums over. Maybe not all of them, but
just pick out the best material and re-release it. I'm better at making records
on my own now anyway... except in Holland, I did have a great producer for
the ICLC for punk rock. I know I can't go back with Daniel Rey. He's the
Ramones' producer. I don't sound that way. I finally found someone here
I really like working with. I like working with Chris Spedding. Now I have
enough confidence that I can go to the studio and not make a jerk out of
myself. I don't have to beg, plead, and fight to get a normal, mono-type
sounding garage record. I'm ready, and I'm going to do another new album
again. I think I should be re-recording them all, but it's a shame that
"Hop Around," my new album, isn't in the stores right now.
GLENN SHIRES: When will it be released in the
DEE DEE RAMONE: We've been calling the guy every
day and he's lied about
everything. He said we were on Revolver Records over here. I don't know
where they are or what happened. Nobody ever called me. Nobody got paid
it. It's just a fiasco. I just have to go on and be happy that I'm
I have the book coming out, and I'm making a live album this month.
Hopefully now that I have good people behind me, for once... I have this
management, Artists Worldwide. They seem to be sorting all this stuff out;
giving me a second chance, so I'm really very lucky. Usually people like
don't get this lucky anymore. No matter what the story, it's just over. Or
you don't get a second chance. Nobody really cares. Even if they care,
there's nothing they can do. So I'm just lucky on the strength and the
interest in the Ramones that I can still play, and make people happy
somewhat. That's big success.
GLENN SHIRES: Can you tell me about the members of
your band on this tour? How did
you find this band?
DEE DEE RAMONE: How was Brian, the guitar player?
What did you think?
GLENN SHIRES: It sounded good to me. From where I
was standing, I couldn't see him too well, but it sounded like a good mix
between your guitar and his.
DEE DEE RAMONE: Good, because it was only his
second show! It was terrifying.
Johnny [Pisano], Marky's bass player, is good, but Barbara is who I play
with. We've been playing for years now. We played in Spain and Argentina,
and Germany and Holland... everywhere. Then we came to New York and
playing with Mark, and C.J. and Joey sometimes, in different combinations.
The best one I liked was Barbara, Mark, me and C.J., and then we broke
GLENN SHIRES: Was that the first version of the
DEE DEE RAMONE: Yeah, and C.J. was really not good
on guitar. He's very good to
have in a band. He works hard and he always comes to the rehearsals with
the songs learned, and he can sing, and he plays the right way. It was
wonderful with that band, but it's another Ramones kind of tragedy. I
have loved to help Joey make an album, but he really didn't want me, which
is surprising because he doesn't have any material. And I didn't want
anything from him except to help him. I thought he needed to go out
good. I didn't want him to get the humiliation of putting his own material
out because he's still kind of scarred from being in the Ramones and he
doesn't know reality. What if he's going to put out a calypso music album
[laughing]? Everybody does that! You can't help it. When you're in a band
you eventually have to go a little crazy. Then it takes awhile to pull
yourself back together.
GLENN SHIRES: I heard that Joey Ramone has been
sick, but I also heard he's getting
better. I'm not sure what the real story is.
DEE DEE RAMONE: Well, can you believe this?
Legally, we're not allowed to talk about it!
GLENN SHIRES: Wow, I didn't know that.
DEE DEE RAMONE: I appologize.
GLENN SHIRES: Oh, that's fine. So, how did you hook
up with your current band? How
did you meet these guys, and how did it all come together?
DEE DEE RAMONE: Well, it sneaks up on me. I didn't
expect it to happen. I don't
know how it happened. I was trying to promote this band SexyXrist
[pronounced "Sexy Christ"], because their manager thought they were going
get a big record deal. I was going to write their album and I was taking
them on the road for awhile. Then the agency and everybody threw them off
the tour. I didn't have anything to do with that at all. So I said, "Can I
stop too?" and they said, "No, you've gotta keep playing." I said, "What
you mean?" They said, "We're booked already!" So I said, "Alright, I'll
finish the tour." Then, once they were gone, somehow I became happier.
not as much their fault as mine. The less people the better for me. I
make friends too easily. Everybody I have here--Brian, Barbara, Chase, and
Ricky--everybody's really friendly and everything's OK. I kept agreeing to
do more shows. So now I've turned into like a military leader. I chart a
course; have a battle plan for the tour. But I'm enjoying myself and I
put too big of expectations on anything. I'm just happy how I am right
GLENN SHIRES: Dee Dee, I'm not sure if you're
familiar with the internet, but if
you search the web you can find people who trade tapes of rare Ramones
and live recordings. A couple years ago, I got ahold of some demos from
albums "Pleasant Dreams" and "Too Tough To Die." There were lots of great
songs on those demos that never made it to the albums. Do you know if
those songs will ever be released?
DEE DEE RAMONE: No, I don't even know which songs
GLENN SHIRES: I'm not sure what all the titles are.
They're not listed on the tape.
I believe one was called "Looking For Love." There's another called
"You're Not Fooling Me," and a few others.
DEE DEE RAMONE: Well... Boy... I don't know.... I
know about 60 songs, maybe. I
don't know, y'know? I just don't know what to do. I'm trying to do the
best I can. What else does it say on that internet... about them?
GLENN SHIRES: Well, there's lots of stuff. Lots of
Ramones fans have created their
own web sites about the Ramones. Some people put together collections of
live shows that they have on tape. They trade with each other and trade
tapes for other live tapes. It's a big network of fans out there, and not
just for the Ramones but for other bands too.
DEE DEE RAMONE: Well, I guess it's really good,
and I appreciate it all. I'm glad
people are interested. Again, all I can say is I'm really fortunate. I'm a
really lucky person.
GLENN SHIRES: I've got a question about the time
the Ramones met at Tower Records
when "We're Outta Here" was released. Six of the former Ramones got
together at the store to sign copies of the album.....
DEE DEE RAMONE: OK, that was fun for me. I was
real happy seeing them then.
GLENN SHIRES: .....I was wondering why Richie
Ramone [the Ramones' drummer 1983-87] was absent from that.
DEE DEE RAMONE: Gee, you won't believe this! We
can't find him!
GLENN SHIRES: Really? He just disappeared?
DEE DEE RAMONE: Yeah, and we have his money. We
have money for him, too! Nobody
knows. It's weird. We didn't get a detective, but of course Richie's
invited to any of those things. He can take my place next time
GLENN SHIRES: On a related note, "Halfway To
Sanity" is the only Ramones album
without any songwriting credits listed. It's also the last album that
Richie played on. Was there a reason for not including songwriting
credits? I always thought it was kind of strange.
DEE DEE RAMONE: Yes... it is. I don't know.
Hmmm.... You know what? I'm glad you just mentioned that because I
haven't listened to that album in awhile.
GLENN SHIRES: I think it's got a lot of great
DEE DEE RAMONE: I do too. "Garden Of Serenity" is
GLENN SHIRES: I'd like to know more about the set
list you've been playing with
your current band. Do you play the same songs every night or do you change
DEE DEE RAMONE: Yeah, but now for the next week or
so, I'm just going to try to
play the same set. We're doing a live album on the 29th, so I want to do
this as a rehearsal. But I know about five other Ramones songs and some
Johnny Thunders songs.
GLENN SHIRES: Yeah, that was really cool when you
played those Johnny Thunders
songs at the end of the show.
DEE DEE RAMONE: Yeah, I do "Chatterbox" too, and
one of the ballads, "It's Not
Enough." I know a lot of Chuck Berry songs which I don't dare play
I don't think anyone wants to hear that from me, but I love it. And
sometimes we do "Mr. Postman" or "Fire" or "Born Under A Bad Sign." We
didn't feel like it was appropriate last night, but at least I can change
set. But I think I've changed my mind. I'm not going to play those other
songs. Oh, I did "Do You Love Me" last night, like an oldie. I would have
done things like open the show with "Midnight Hour," but now I know I'm
not supposed to do that.
GLENN SHIRES: You're probably aware of that Ramones
cover album series, where other
bands record their own versions of entire Ramones albums. Have you heard
any of those records, and what do you think of them?
DEE DEE RAMONE: Well, The Cretins I like. There
was one I heard--The Hymans--a
couple years ago when I lived in Amsterdam. They were there from Sweden.
They just saw Barbara and I walking down the street. They said, "Hey Dee
Dee!" and gave me their tape. Joey's real name is Jeff Hyman, and they
called The Hymans after him, I guess. The album was great, man. It sounded
like an '80s-type Ramones album. The songwriting... I was shocked, y'know.
saw this other band--they're not a Ramones cover band--they're called the
Backyard Babies, and they were nice. They were cool. They were a trio and
they were playing guitar solos and stuff but I really liked it. They were
really passionate about it. I liked the band last night [Fireballs Of
Freedom] that was going on before us. They sounded so good, like a normal
band should... not shitty! They had an old fashioned sound. I liked that.
But I really like other things. I like the guitar player from Rage Against
The Machine. I guess everybody does. I don't know his name.
GLENN SHIRES: He has kind of a different
DEE DEE RAMONE: Oh yeah, that beep beep beep
stuff. He's great.
GLENN SHIRES: After playing bass for the Ramones,
you've played guitar on most of
your solo projects. Was it easy or difficult to learn to play the
DEE DEE RAMONE: Oh, it's easy for me, but I had to
work to learn it. I just decided
I wanted to play it and I bought myself one and then I went to Chicago,
where Legends is--Buddy Guy's blues club. I started jamming and I liked it
there, but the music was zydeco. It wasn't like I had imagined. I heard
album "Damn Right I Got The Blues" and it flipped me out. Jeff Beck was on
that too. But there [at Legends] it was like Gatemouth Brown and all that,
so after awhile I went to Michigan, where it wasn't so much of a pro
The thing is, in Michigan, there's all these great blues guitar players
and they taught me all that stuff; the traditional blues. I play all that
[Another phone rings]
DEE DEE RAMONE: But I better get going now. I have
to get to the music store. I
lost my bag and my strings and stuff. I gotta fix my guitar because it got
screwed up last night by the audience [probably from all the beer flying
through the air and crazed fans trying to touch his guitar].
GLENN SHIRES: OK, Dee Dee, well I'd like to thank
you very much for this interview.
It's been a real honor to speak with you.
DEE DEE RAMONE: OK! Thanks so much. If you want to
call me again, I'll be here all day.
Glenn Shires plays drums for the punk band Lysistrata and plays bass for
punk band Compact 56.
(Gabba thanks yet Glenn, that was fabulous)