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Joey Ramone - Don't Worry About Me (Cover Artwork)

Joey Ramone

Joey Ramone: Don't Worry About MeDon't Worry About Me (2002)
Sanctuary Records

Reviewer Rating: 4.5
User Rating:


Contributed by: adamAdam
(others by this writer | submit your own)

Mortality is a funny thing. We follow a subculture that frowns on celebrity in a culture that adores it. Even the fathers of our genre are not safe from our ever-cynical opinion. Fame and respect have proven to be different things, nowhere is this more evident then this generations' criticism of.
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Mortality is a funny thing.

We follow a subculture that frowns on celebrity in a culture that adores it. Even the fathers of our genre are not safe from our ever-cynical opinion. Fame and respect have proven to be different things, nowhere is this more evident then this generations' criticism of John Lydon or Jello Biafra. I'm hard pressed to find a personality from punk's past who embodies the mutual respect of the crowd, with the exception of Joey Ramone of course.

The Ramones were a fun band; they had a way of spinning social issues into absurdity and never took themselves too seriously. They retired after 23 releases in 1996 and went to work on various projects. Joey had a backlog of material going back to 1985 that he never recorded with the Ramones, much of this shows up on this release.

With good friend Daniel Rey producing and playing guitar, Joey set out to record what initially seemed like the typical solo record. However Joey was sick with lymphoma, he had been for a while and was in an out of hospitals during the three-year period when this was being made. Lymphoma is particularly deadly form of cancer; Joey knew this. As he recorded the joyous vocals for his cover of "What a Wonderful World," he knew this. How does a man so frequently characterized as light-hearted and carefree deal with his own fate?

There is more emotion underlying this release then anything I've heard this year, more then the loneliest emo band crying into their sweater sleeves, more then the angriest hardcore unit screaming the ills of society. Joey spends these eleven tracks tying up some loose ends and paying his respects. His influences are given a nod with his cover of the Stooges' "1969" and the simplistic Who inspired "Mr. Punchy." The Ramones were never a political band, but Joey (wearing a Jello Biafra shirt on the album art) firmly makes his case here. The song "Venting" addresses the ills of today's world, from the lying politicians to school shootings. Joey reflects on his age, saying he doesn't understand the way the world has changed. Despite this however, Joey was happy at the end of his life, "What A Wonderful World" and a number of fun Ramones-style songs display this.

However the most poignant songs here address his cancer, his realization that there isn't much time left. "I Got Knocked Down (But I'll Get Up)," "Stop Thinking About It," and the title track are straight ahead rockers akin to later day Ramones, but there's something subtle in Joey's voice… fear. He sings "Sitting in a hospital bed… I want my life… It really sucks," words simple enough to make light of the situation, but you can hear his uncertainty.

Daniel Ray is Joey's guitarist. Andy Shernoff of The Dictators plays bass and the drumming is split between Frank Funaro (Cracker and Del Lords) and Marky Ramone. Joe McGinty of the The Psychedelic Furs provides some keyboards on a few tracks. A list of guests provided instrumentation or backing vocals, including Captain Sensible of the Damned and Jerry Only of the Misfits. Of course the album is not perfect, but the Ramones were never about achieving musical perfection…

Its funny however that reviewers have been mutually agreeing that their favorite song is "Maria Bartiromo," a humorously absurd song about Joey's infatuation with the CNBC financial reporter… It's just the type of song that seems so out of place in a man's epitaph, but so perfect if that man is Joey Ramone.



Joey died April 15, 2001 in New York
The Ramones were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on March 18, 2002

 

 
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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
CountDruckula (April 16, 2011)

One of the best vocalists in history. Some of the songs on this album want to make me cry. So sad so legendary, Four People influenced a whole Genre and Generation (and generations to come) Without Joey there would be no Punk music this album proves that

lovechuck (May 28, 2010)

i love this cd ....a must have good songs well mixed .....are great coda for a great master of rock ....the voice of my blank generation joey we miss you ....

JRr (November 11, 2006)

By the way; This album rocks! And to think he did it while he was in hospital!! It's amazing! R.I.P. Johnny, Joey and Dee Dee Ramone.

JRr (November 11, 2006)

Hey, to that a**hole who posted that much sh*t about this album and The Ramones; If you really meant all of the things you said, I can honestly tell that your life must SUCK! Talking about a legend in that way..
And if you hate them so much, why did you even have to comment it? You must have no life. I dunno what faggy bands you like.. but one thing is for sure, if you like punk music, then that band wouldn't excist without Joey Ramone, so shut the fuck up fag!

branden (July 18, 2006)

joey sounds so amazingly good on this album, like 30 times more inspired than anything from the last few ramones albums. killer album

Teenage_Headcase (July 1, 2006)

[uhm yeah... A "anonymous" someone who doesn't even have the guts to post under a screenname, saying those stupid things about one of the greatest Punk/Rock'n'Roll legends, isn't going to keep anyone awake at night.]

This is one of the greatest albums ever made, Joey Ramone was a unique character with an extraordinary voice, that no one ever can replace. He's my hero, and always will be an inspiring person to alot of people, including myself.
I miss him alot, aswell as Dee Dee & Johnny Ramone. RIP

Anonymous (June 17, 2006)

Oh, my world. It is ok

Anonymous (June 17, 2006)

Oh, my world. It is ok

Anonymous (October 5, 2005)

If i wee to say anything, it probbaly wouldn't mean as much as i actually wanted it too. All i can say is that Joey Ramone was an absalute legend, he had one of those significant voices, that only a select few have. The whole Ramones history refleatcs so much in music today and probably forever, i can only hope that the anwsers of musically direction will come to us in our sleep, but Joey can take a sigh of relief because he did so much and we should have so much to look forward to. R.I.P

toma (June 16, 2003)

If I had a time machine I'd go back in time to when your mother was in labor and fuck the hell out of her. Then after you drowned in my protein, I'd feed your fetus to her. Oh yeah, great fuckin' album.i wonder why people think saying things like this is clever

soulbleed (February 23, 2003)

i was never a big ramones fan, nor did i ever care to admit their insanely heavy influence on everything that is going on today - they were the main reason for the existence of one of my all time favorite bands (the misfits), hence making them responsible for pretty much everyone who copied the misfits after that. the cycle will continue to go on and on, and for that i owe my deepest. I listened to this solo album after I heard of his death, and it immediately struck a chord that is barely even there when I listen to other records - and it remains there every time I listen to it. Too bad he's not here to know that.

fakesmile (September 27, 2002)

I love the ramones... I love their approach to rock n roll which we (and the ramones themselves) call punk.
EVERY punkband was influenced by them. And all those other bands too...

This album is great. Even though I rather play my Rocket To Russia record again.

But the lyrics of this record make me act otherwise... The sound is fairly similar to a "normal" ramones record. But those lyrics are just so funny/simplistic/real and devestating.... Joey's version of a Wonderful World is one of the most beautyful moments of punk and music history. There's not another person who can convince me of loving life in any other way.

Joey's voice is amazing...

Thanks man...

Dee-Dee is pounding those 8notes forever in punkrock-heaven...

WE OWE SO MUCH TO THESE PEOPLE...

Anonymous (May 22, 2002)

I am not a spiritual person, but i am convinced that whenever any punk band plays a note, it is proof that Joey Ramone IS STILL AMONG US. I get a tear in my eye every time I hear this record.Simply amazing.

Anonymous (April 26, 2002)

This is a great album, that solves the whole Ramones era, with a perfect circle...

There are some great songs on this album, I belive that it must have been a personal hell for Jey to have sung the lyrics to What a Wonderful World when he knew that he didnīt have much time left...

/O:et, Sweden

Anonymous (April 19, 2002)

i never claimed to be part of any subculture, moron. this album sucks, the ramones suck, u2 sucks, and peace is a pipe dream. SUCK IT PUNK!

Anonymous (April 19, 2002)

If I had a time machine I'd go back in time to when your mother was in labor and fuck the hell out of her. Then after you drowned in my protein, I'd feed your fetus to her. Oh yeah, great fuckin' album.

callinglondon (April 18, 2002)

also, i don't think there's one band out there who's making more of a difference in world affairs than U2. Bono has actually met with world leaders himself, and done a better job at those meetings than a lot of politicians, to discuss world peace. You claim to be part of a subculture that tries to better the world, but then you shit on one of the bands that's doing everything they can to improve situations.

Anonymous (April 18, 2002)

To the person who said u2's mother should have aborted them. Hey jackass if it wasn't for Bono, Joey Ramone would have died a much worse death. Joey couldn't afford some of the better cancer treatments & it was Bono who got Joey the best that $$$ could buy. Bono spent his own money trying to make sure Joey's last few months were as painless as possible. Why? because he was a fan & because he could. So just because you don't like a band don't go saying dumb shit just for the fuck of it. Jackass. Aren't your friends waiting for you at the mall anyway, get off the computer.

moldy (April 18, 2002)

shit dont waste your time trying to convience her, just run up and kick her in the stomach

evildeadalive (April 16, 2002)

I'm not saying I like Eddie Vedder or U2, just stating the facts. Without the Ramones I doubt punk would even exist. Quit your childish comments, you don't like the Ramones? Fine.

Anonymous (April 16, 2002)

if i had a time machine i'd convince your mom to abort you

Anonymous (April 16, 2002)

wow he influenced U2 AND Eddie Vedder? if i had a time machine, i'd go back and convince his mother to abort him.

evildeadalive (April 15, 2002)

Overrated? Fuck you. You have no clue what the fuck you are talking about. No one is saying the Ramones were guitar, drum, or vocal gods. They are gods for what they did for music. Like them or not, without Joey Ramone there is no punk rock as we see it today. How can you possibly call a man who's influenced literally millions of musicians, from Eddie Vedder to U2 to every fucking punk band you've ever heard in your life, overrated? Grow up, get your head out of your ass, and at least admit what this man has done. You don't like his music? Fine. But shut the fuck up about your idea of overrated. This man was a fucking god. Have a nice day.

moldy (April 14, 2002)

This was a great review for a great album. I've had it for about a month now and was working on a review but this one said it all, and much better than i could have. RIP Joey, we all miss you

Anonymous (April 14, 2002)

joey ramone manages to suck beyond the grave. good riddance to overrated garbage.

CallingLondon (April 14, 2002)

i can't believe more people aren't commenting on this cd. you all suck.

CallingLondon (April 13, 2002)

i'm going to buy this album in 2 days (april 15th)

Anonymous (April 13, 2002)

awesome review, thanks to you i'm going to buy this cd today!!

evildeadalive (April 12, 2002)

I can't believe it's been a year already... Joey Ramone was god.

Anonymous (April 12, 2002)

Not strictly true that the Ramones were "never a political band." Several of their songs, especially in the later part of their career, dealt with political issues -- most famously "Bonzo Goes to Bitburg" about Reagan and "Censorshit" about Tipper Gore and the PMRC music censorship efforts.

Anonymous (April 12, 2002)

Once you start getting into politics is when you make enemies. The Ramones were smart enough to stay out of all of that and just focus on rocking and a good time.

This is a great great album. So sad that Joey never got a chance to finish it

Anonymous (April 12, 2002)

Excellent review.

ChrisGorman2 (April 12, 2002)

good review, good CD

Anonymous (April 12, 2002)

It's really sad when such a great and ikeable person dies. Then again it's a tragic thing when "almost" anybody dies. But Joey Ramone was one o the few people that everybody liked because he had no problem with anybody. Sad, sad thing. Great ending record though, Joey did a great job. RIP man.

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