RICHIE RAMONE'S BOOK I KNOW BETTER NOW: MY LIFE BEFORE, DURING, AND AFTER THE RAMONES
RICHIE RAMONE'S BOOK I KNOW BETTER NOW: MY LIFE BEFORE, DURING, AND AFTER THE RAMONES (NOVEMBER 27, 2018)
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REVIEW BY DAVE U. HALL
BASIC INFORMATION OF BOOK:
Richie Ramone wrote this book together with Peter Aaron. Richie Ramone spoke to me few times of his book plans. And now it did happen, his book is out. It was released on November 27, 2018. Book is titled I Know Better Now: My Life Before, During, And After The Ramones. It has 304 pages. Publisher is Backbeat Books. You can order book from
As I said, Richie Ramone wrote I Know Better Now: My Life Before, During, And After The Ramones together with Peter Aaron who was active in punk and hardcore scene already in 1980's. Aaron is also wellknown journalist and writer. Aaron has created for example book titled
If You Like the Ramones Here Are Over 200 Bands, CDs...
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Richie Ramone here
Here is press release text of the I Know Better Now: My Life Before, During, And After The Ramones: "It's 1982 and the Ramones are in a gutter-bound spiral. Following a run of inconsistent albums and deep in the throes of internal tensions, the legendary quartet is about to crash and burn. Enter Richie Ramone. Then a 26-year-old from New Jersey named Richard Reinhardt, he's snapped up by the group to be their new drummer and instantly goes from the obscurity of the underground club scene to membership in the most famous punk-rock band of all time, revitalizing the pioneering outfit with his powerful, precise, and blindingly fast beats composing classic cuts like the menacing anthem "Somebody Put Something in My Drink" and becoming the only Ramones percussionist to sing lead vocals for the group.
With the Ramones, he performs over five hundred shows at venues all around the world and records three storming studio albums before abruptly quitting the band and going deep underground. To most fans, this crucial figure in the band's history has remained a mystery, his tale untold. Until now. I Know Better Now: My Life Before, During, and After the Ramones is the firsthand, four-on-the-floor account of a life in rock 'n' roll and in one of its most influential acts straight from the sticks of the man who kept the beat."
BOOK REVIEW BY DAVE U. HALL:
Dave U. Hall wrote this review of I Know Better Now: My Life Before, During, And After The Ramones in December 2018.
It's always interesting to read other people's take on a subject that is related in some way to your past. I call these kinds of books: "Connecting the Dots Books." I'm sure you know what kind of books I'm talking about. If not, check out The Who by numbers album cover.
A new book I recently read (that's been connecting a lot of dots for me) is a book entitled "I Know Better Now" by Richie Ramone (with Peter Aaron). It really drew lines to a lot of things I knew (and did not know) about this kid out of New Jersey who eventually was anointed the name Richie Ramone.
I have to tell you; I really enjoyed reading this book. Just like the Ramones' music, the chapters read at a steady pace with no added fills to upset the momentum of the story. However, I'm kind of getting ahead of myself. Ya know? I'll come back to this later. Let's step back a bit to understand why I really dug reading this book. I'll try to sum it up in 2 minutes and 30 seconds of your time if you let me. Definitely won't go beyond 6 minutes like a Queen song, So here I go: 1-2-3-4!
The first thing that I have to mention before I count off this review is that I've known Richie for at least 35 years (maybe even longer). However, even though we have something of a past, I never really knew anything about his early years (which includes the time in the 80's when we played together in a band called Remod). "I Know Better Now" fills in those blanks. I can also unequivocally say; that Richie doesn't leave out any details either. The honesty of his experiences growing up in New Jersey (along with his family adventures) kept me grinning and relating throughout each chapter (Hi Lenny!). Richie also timelines the bands he played with (as well as discussing his musical training) in the Jersey area along the way. A real nice prelude for what's to come after that.
The book modulates into the next aspect of Richie's musical journey. That being, answering ads in the Village Voice to get into New York City bands. A five year plan that went from Remod to landing a gig with the iconic Ramones.
It's without saying that the book is brimming to the rim with stories about Richie's adventures with the Ramones. Everything that you wanted to know but were afraid to ask (without permission) is in there. This aspect of the book culminates as to why Richie decided to leave the band. Most of us know why, but if you don't, you will now.
The last part of the book deals with Richie's life after quitting the Ramones. Before reading this chapter, I vaguely remember him telling me why he quit. You see; right after he left the Ramones, Richie did some engineering work for me on my solo CD entitled Walter MIDI Group. I remember him mentioning quitting the band to me but didn't elaborate on it. This section of the book details it in full and clears up all the myths.
By the way, a little sidebar to all you book reading drummers out there. I'd like to mention that Richie gives a ton of drumming tips on how to be a better drummer. You definitely might want to brush up on your polka rhythms after reading those pointers!
Ok, so here's what I was saying in the beginning of this review. The book is a great read. The chapters are just the right amount of words to make you want to keep a steady reading tempo. You won't want to put it down (unless of course you smell smoke in the bedroom; maybe).
If you really want to know what it was like playing, composing and engineering with the Ramones, "I Know Better Now" is the book you are Ramone-ing to read. So what are you waiting for? For somebody to put something in your drink? Get this book so you'll know better; NOW!
Review is written by Dave U. Hall.
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