The Ramones are the greatest punk rock group, probably because they were the first punk rock group. They started out in 1974 in Queens, New York. They did punk rock so well they spawned an entire genre. The Ramones also spent a better part of 22 years on the road doing over 2,000 shows, a feat for any band. The Ramones invented punk rock and are still the greatest at it.
The Ramones had numerous hits and many can be found on their compilation album The Ramones. This album contains 20 songs and all of them are so unforgettable it’s a challenge to pick just a few. It starts off with the ever-classic “Blitzkreig Bop”, the rallying cry for Ramones fans as Joey screams “Hey Ho, Let’s Go!”. Even though the majority of their songs are relatively simple in terms of chord progressions and musicality, there is an undeniable passion, feeling and groove that makes their music unmatchable.
“I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend” shows the awesome way in which The Ramones can slow things down and still maintain their style. “Pinhead” shows their unique songwriting as it starts out with spacey lyrics saying “Gabba Gabba we accept you, one of us!” with the ending of the song popularizing the phrase “Gabba Gabba hey!”. The Ramones had a way of creating these phrases that just stuck like in “Cretin Hop” where they coined their fans Cretins. Another one of these somewhat strange songs is “We’re a Happy Family” which mocks the family image that was being portrayed in America during this time. “Rockaway Beach” is one of their more pop sounding songs and again shows their diverse sound. “Baby, I Love You” continues this as The Ramones cover a Ronettes song, yes a Ronettes song. Not a song you would expect from a punk rock band yet they pull it off and it sounds incredible.
The Ramones were the first and best punk rock band to ever exist. Their work is influential in all genres and transcends time. Their music will live on forever and as The Ramones would say, “There’s no stoppin’ the Cretins from hoppin'”.