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A Tommy Ramone tribute / by Edgar Durden

How did the Ramones become the Ramones? It's hard to draw precise lines in histories of explosive punk rock and seemingly lawless art, but in many senses, the answer seems indeed to be Tommy: the band's primary drummer, an influencer of their aesthetic, a creative force behind some of their greatest songs.

After emigrating from Hungary at the age of four, Tommy (born Thomas Erdelyi) quickly fell in love with music. He would eventually perform alongside future Ramone, John Lummings (Johnny Ramone) as part of the Tangerine Puppets, a mid-sixties high-school garage band.

Tommy always seemed to be more drawn to the backstage aspect of music though: in the early years, he was originally the Ramones' manager and publicist. Eventually, when it was clear that their original drummer Joey couldn't keep up, Tommy stepped up. Regardless of what DeeDee might've had you believe, the moment Tommy took over the drums was the moment the Ramones were truly born.

Tommy, a smart business man, made the original suggestion that the band of "brothers" adopt their now signature disheveled but undeniably cool Ramones "look." This changed the way rock and roll was presented; pretty boys in pretty suits weren't the norm after this. Today, from power-pop hero Matthew Melton of Warm Soda to the legendary NOBUNNY, the Schott "Perfecto" biker jacket remains a staple of garage pop's aesthetic.

Tommy Ramone was responsible for "I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend" as well as the legendary battle cry, "Hey Ho, Let's go!"

A talented producer, Tommy shares producing credits for the Ramones' first three albums (Ramones, Leave Home, Rocket to Russia) as well as their live album, It's Alive. He later returned in 1984 (years after having quit the band) to produce the Ramones' eight studio album, Too Tough to Die. Tommy also produced for the likes of the Replacements and Redd Kross, even serving as an assistant engineer for Jimi Hendrix's Band of Gypsys.

Personally, I don't know what I would be without the Ramones. And I don't know what the Ramones would be without Tommy.

"This is art," he wrote in the liner notes of one Ramones compilation album. "Sometimes it doesn't sell at first. Sometimes it takes a while for the world to catch on." I'm convinced that when the world catches on, they will see that the "quiet Ramone," as he was so often dubbed, has, on the contrary, the loudest legacy. . . .

An interview with Chris Moore of Coke Bust / by Katie Alice Greer

There's a Chris Moore in every town and if there isn't, there should be. Many Washington, DC punk and DIY shows couldn't really happen without him. He books the gigs, he brings the PA, takes the money at the door and most importantly, he gets people out to the show. In fact, Chris and fellow D.O.C. bandmate Nolan operate a vital practice space out of their home in Takoma Park, so you could say he's there from inception. I've heard the same line many times about new bands on a Venomous Ideas bill: "I'd never heard of them before, but Chris obviously liked them enough, so I thought I'd check it out." Chris is dedicated to both maintaining and growing the hardcore scene in DC while creating an environment of inclusivity. His bills are musically eclectic and he even flyered at a Paramore gig at the Fillmore once last fall. I know this because I ran into him on the street in Silver Spring afterwards. Mostly he did it because he won a free ticket, but also why not? There are people at Paramore gigs who'd like to be at a basement show, if only they knew about it.

Chris is also a drummer in at least 70 bands. I'm just kidding, sort of. He's on tour a lot. Our email interview spans a few weeks, while he was on a West Coast USA tour with Coke Bust, and then a European tour with D.O.C.


K: So tell me your name, where you live, how you got into hardcore and punk, and tell me which bands you play in and what else you're doing these days. You're always booking a lot of shows.

C: My name is Chris Moore. I live in Washington D.C. My first introduction to punk was through my mom. She listened to a lot of cool music. The first two tapes she gave me were B-52s "Cosmic Thing" and Madonna "Immaculate Collection."

K:Do you have a favorite Madonna song?

C:It's a toss up between Borderline and Lucky Star.

K:Okay back to biographical stuff.

C: My mom grew up in DC . . .

Papercut Zine Library searches for a new home / by Emily Hopkins

I met Adrienne Naylor, a volunteer at Papercut Zine Library, at Lorem Ipsum on Monday, July 14th, after closing. The used bookstore was dark except for the fluorescent glow in the back, where until that day, Papercut had taken up shop. The shelves had been gutted, the more than 15,000 zines packed in boxes and relocated over the river to a house in Allston. The basement had a few stray zines and a box of VHS tapes, but except for these scraps, Papercut had vacated.

At the beginning of July, Papercut was given notice that they had two weeks to leave Cambridge's Lorem Ipsum Books, where they had been located since 2011. (That deadline has since been pushed back to August 1). News of the move was sudden, but not all that surprising.

The used bookstore is no stranger to financial hardship. In January 2013, the store held an Indiegogo campaign to raise $29,000 to avoid getting evicted and to try to innovate their business practices. In the next few months, though nothing is final, Lorem Ipsum will again try to innovate.

“Unfortunately, part of that requires utilizing the space that Papercut was previously occupying,” said Mitch Broesder, a Papercut librarian and Lorem Ipsum employee.

Moving locations is not new to the group. When they began lending zines in 2005, they were first housed in the Democracy Center, a multi-purpose meeting house in Harvard Square. They later moved to a third-floor space inside of a Somerville house. It was ultimately inaccessible, though: let alone being unavailable to those who can’t use stairs, the library was pretty secluded to everybody.

“People would have to ring the bell, and you’d have to run down three flights of stairs to let them in,” Naylor said.

Since Papercut moved to Lorem Ipsum three years ago, it’s seen various incarnations, depending on the state of the bookstore itself. For a while, the library inhabited a small corner in the front of the store while an MIT start up inhabited the back, where Papercut has . . .


by Perry Shall
The blood of cool people.

by Zach Schonfeld and Jason Katzenstein
On the internet.

Lauren Denitzio of Worriers @ Silent Barn
Here's to promises we'll try to keep.

by Pandora Christ
Just know this: you can never go back, not anywhere and especially not to America.

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