The “entertaining and enlightening” (Stephen King) final word on the genius and mischief of the Ramones, told by the man who created the beat behind their iconic music and lived to tell about it.
When punk rock reared its spiky head in the early seventies, Marc Bell had the best seat in the house. Already a young veteran of the prototype American metal band Dust, Bell took residence in artistic, seedy Lower Manhattan, where he played drums in bands that would shape rock music for decades to come, including Wayne County, who pioneered transsexual rock, and Richard Hell and the Voidoids, who directly inspired the entire early British punk scene.
If punk had royalty, in 1978 Marc became part of it when he was knighted “Marky Ramone” by Johnny, Joey, and Dee Dee of the iconoclastic Ramones. The band of tough misfits were a natural fit for Marky, who dressed punk before there was punk, and who brought his “blitzkrieg” style of drumming as well as the studio and stage experience the band needed to solidify its lineup. Together, they changed the world.
But Marky Ramone changed, too. The epic wear and tear of a dysfunctional group (and the Ramones were a step beyond dysfunction) endlessly crisscrossing the country and the world in an Econoline—practically a psychiatric ward on wheels—drove Marky from partying to alcoholism. When his life started to look more out of control then Dee Dee’s, he knew he had a problem. Marky left music in the mid-eighties to enter recovery and eventually returned to help the Ramones finally receive their due as one of the greatest and most influential bands of all time.
Covering in unflinching detail the cult film Rock ’N’ Roll High School to “I Wanna Be Sedated” to Marky’s own struggles, Punk Rock Blitzkrieg is an authentic and always honest look at the people who reinvented rock music, and not a moment too soon.
Born Marc Bell, Marky Ramone, a Brooklyn native, joined the Ramones in 1978. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2002 along with Johnny, Joe, Dee Dee, and Tommy, and has received both a Grammy and an MTV Lifetime Achievement Award. Visit him online at MarkyRamone.com to keep up with all the latest.