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Why the Ramones Matter
Donna Gaines

Not yet released.
Publication date: October 2, 2018

Music Matters

2018 • 176 pp. 5 x 7"
Music History & Criticism / Rock Music / Music - Punk

$14.95 Paperback, 978-1-5126-0179-4
$12.99 Ebook, 978-1-5126-0329-3

Check your ebook retailer or local library for ebook availability.

Hey ho, let’s go! A musical, cultural, historical argument for the centrality of the Ramones

The central experience of the Ramones and their music is of being an outsider, an outcast, a person who’s somehow defective, and the revolt against shame and self-loathing. The fans, argues Donna Gaines, got it right away, from their own experience of alienation at home, at school, on the streets, and from themselves. This sense of estrangement and marginality permeates everything the Ramones still offer us as artists, and as people. Why the Ramones Matter compellingly makes the case that the Ramones gave us everything; they saved rock and roll, modeled DIY ethics, and addressed our deepest collective traumas, from the personal to the historical. In songs like “I’m against It” and “I Don’t Care,” the Ramones offered up an anthem a day, a soundtrack for everyday life in a ridiculous, punishing, amusing world.

Reviews / Endorsements

“As a seven-year veteran of the Ramones and a lifelong fan, Donna speaks for me and every one of us who found our salvation in the only band that really mattered to the outsider in us all.”—CJ Ramone

“The Ramones were an answered prayer, the antidote to mellotron solos and stadium power ballads. . . . This book explains why they not only mattered, but were a vital, inspirational, earth shattering force.”—Anthony Bourdain

“Gaines whips up a literary three-chord meal that she baked in her five-borough heart, and serves it with side orders of grit, wit, and grace.”

—Mickey Leigh, author of
I Slept with Joey Ramone

“Who better to tell us why the Ramones saved rock and roll? Donna hits the nail right on the head with this wonderful book.”—Monte Melnick, Ramones tour manager and author of On the Road with the Ramones

“What’s best about Gaines’s vision of the Ramones is that it extends into the present. No one has written better about pure punk and resurgent fascism.” Robert Christgau, author of Is It Still Good to Ya? Fifty Years of Rock Criticism, 1967–2017

DONNA GAINES has written for Rolling Stone, MS, the Village Voice, Spin, Newsday and Salon. Her work has been published in fanzines, trade and scholarly collections, journals and textbooks. A sociologist, journalist and New York State Licensed Master Social Worker, Dr. Gaines has taught sociology at Barnard College of Columbia University, the Graduate Faculty of New School University. Since 2013, she has taught social science, music, youth and community studies at Empire State College of the State University of New York. An ocean activist, Gaines also works as an Usui Reiki Master Healer/Teacher with a special interest in spirituality and recovery.

Click here for author's website.

Mon, 30 Jul 2018 15:53:08 -0500