April 15, 2001 – Joey Ramone was born Jeffry Ross Hyman on May 19th 1951 in Forest Hills, Queens, New York where he had a dysfunctional upbringing, but in 1974, he co-founded the punk rock band Ramones with friends John Cummings and Douglas Colvin.
All three adopted stage names using “Ramone” as their stage surname. Cummings became Johnny Ramone, and Colvin became Dee Dee Ramone, with Jeffry adopted the name Joey Ramone. The name Ramone stems from the fact that x-Beatle Paul McCartney used to check into hotels under the pseudonym “Paul Ramon” while touring.
Joey initially served as the group’s drummer and Dee Dee was the original vocalist. However, Dee Dee proved to be unsuited for the lead vocals so they switched positions. Even though The Ramones had enormous influence on the punk rock movement in the US, they achieved only minor commercial success, their only certified gold record was the compilation album Ramones Mania. In 1996, after a tour with the Lollapalooza music festival, the band played their final show and then disbanded.
Recognition of the band’s huge importance slowly built over the years, and they are now regularly represented in many assessments of all-time great rock music, such as the Rolling Stone lists of the 50 Greatest Artists of All Time and 25 Greatest Live Albums of All Time; VH1’s 100 Greatest Artists of Hard Rock, and Mojo’s 100 Greatest Albums.
In 2002, the Ramones were voted the second greatest rock and roll band ever in Spin. After the band split Joey did make occasional public appearances and worked for a time as a radio DJ; toward the end of the decade, he worked sporadically on a solo album and also assembled a band featuring guitarist Daniel Rey, bassist Andy Shernoff , and drummer Frank Funaro and played several gigs in the New York area.
In 2001 the Ramones were named as inductees to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Joey’s solo album ‘Don’t Worry About Me’ was released posthumously in 2002.
He died after a brave seven year battle with lymphoma, almost 50 old on April 15, 2001.