The Ramones went through drummers with a frequency matched only by Spinal Tap, but Tommy Ramone was the first, and it’s him you hear on The Ramones, Leave Home, and Rocket to Russia. Unfortunately, Tommy, real name Erdélyi Tamás, died yesterday in Queens, New York, at the age of 62, meaning every original remember of the band is now gone. Here today, gone tomorrow.
Tom Erdelyi emigrated to America in 1957 and grew up in Forest Hills, Queens, where he played with guitarist John Cummings – later Johnny Ramone – in Tangerine Puppets. He went on to study engineering and worked at the Record Plant (where he assisted on a 1969 Jimi Hendrix session).
Erdelyi’s other production credits included the Replacements’ major label debut Tim (1985) and L.A. punk unit Redd Kross’ Neurotica (1987). In later years, he went the acoustic route, playing bluegrass and country music with his partner Claudia Tienan in Uncle Monk. (Via)
I don’t have to go on and on about how important the Ramones are, how great Rocket to Russia is, etc., because you already know all that. No, Ramones tributes should be short and sweet, like the band itself, so let’s listen to “Do You Wanna Dance” and just say, we’re not glad to see you go.