END OF THE CENTURY: The Ramones


The Legacy

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07/22/2008

I was introduced to the Ramones by my son, who is now in his twenties. I am proud to say I drove him and some of his friends to a nearby city to hear them play during their early high school years. I am fascinated by the story of this band and its members and feel that not only their music, but their dedication to their art and the refusal to "go commercial" are what makes them truly memorable.

All of my children (age 18 to 32) and I all listen to the Ramones and perhaps the music means something different to all of us. I have a vivid memory of my oldest son playing with his band in a small, sparsely populated bar on the day that Johnny Ramone died. He dedicated the song to Johnny and to me, and I'll never forget the feeling of gratitude I had.

For those who think that success eluded the Ramones, I would disagree. Perhaps from the vantage point of my age (59) it is obvious that success isn't always measured in money or fame. It is about a life well lived, doing what feels right to you, and bringi ng some joy to others. Well done, Ramones. 06/19/2008
mat coulter
california

This film is a great testament to one of the most important bands in rock history. I saw the ramones in 1989 at the Ritz in NYC with circus of power. I was 16 years old, the ramones were awesome...it blew my mind! Thanks for making this fantastic film! 4/25/07
John
Chicago, IL

The Ramones kick-started rock'n'roll from the horrible grip of disco and pretentious stadium rock of the time. Many bands have friction, and that is usually good for creativity. Depending on what and who you think punk is (Stooges, MC5), the Ramones created the original classic image which was then copied in the UK to, sadly, far greater publicity, but then again, Punk (then) wasn't about money or success, it was an attitude. An amazing band, with an amazing history and legacy, and "End of the Century" was a proper salute to one of the truly classic iconic rock bands of all time. I was very lucky to had been able to see the Ramones over 6 times, and each time was amazing. Ramones Forever. 2/26/07

The Ramones are a true American rock and roll institution. Necessity is the mother of invention and a few kids from Queens invented something of beauty out of what little they had. And the world took notice... eventually! 10/2/06
Eva
Fontana CA

I LOVE THE RAMONES SO MUCH THAT EVERYDAY I LISTEN TO THEIR SONGS!!!!I LOVE THEM I LOVE THEM I LOVE THEM I LOVE THEM !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! R.I.P THE RAMONES 8/10/06
sabrina (ramone in my case)
oregon, ohio

hi. my name is sabrina, and i'm 15 years old and i litterally LOVE joey ramone so much that i were a ring on my ring finger and show it to anyone i see and tell them "my hubands name is Joey Ramone" "got a problem with that?" and they dont seem to because they respect me for it.
R.I.P. joey, johnny,& dee dee
i love you joey very much
i'd die for you..... 6/15/05
Carol
Oakland, CA

Please, please, please air this show again. Now 52, I first heard the Ramones in the late 70's when I stopped listening to comercial raido having discovered the 'alternitive'college stations in the Bay Area, and yes it did change my life. I realized that I didn't have to conform to other peoples values. That there where other people out there with whom I could connect with on a more meaningful level and promptly moved from the suburbes to the city. This program helped me reconnect with the Ramones who were the favored music at exilerating dance parties at friends lofts. They ushered a wildly creative point in time.

Having reconected, I went out and re-bought a number of thier CD's including Joey's wonderful solo albumn.

I feel the loss of Joey in particular, who I always felt was the heart and soul of the Ramones.It was his spirt and humanity which I felt shown out like a beacon drawing us in. I could never understand why people always made comments on how strange he looked as I felt he was one of the most beautyful men I'd ever seen.

Since they so hugely sucessful with everyone I knew, it never occured to me that they might not be comercaly sucessful. Unfortunatly that is often the price one has to pay to maintain ones artistic integraty, since comercial success is often based on lowest common denominater ideas of what 'talent' and artistic value means.

Thank you Jim Feilds for making this movie, and thank you PBS for airing it. It would be great to see it again. 6/10/05
arthur schneider

I was nearly 30 years old when i first saw an early ramones show at cbgb. they were great. i was relatively clean cut, worked on wall street but was ready to move on from 60's heavy metal .... probably an "unlikely fan". i hung out with some record company people so i often got an inside tract on the groups.

if no one brought their records please don't blame me. i have them all and still love dancing my way through a ramones set. my 19 year old daughter has been a long time ramones fanatic too!

"end of the century" is the only film i ever saw twice in a theater and i was elated to see it again on pbs. it covered new ground for me by filling in blank spaces that my "inside tract" had opened many years prior.

so what if they had politics among them. i lived politics in a suit and tie for 35 years; they lived it in leather! the fact that they overcame it .... and managed to keep it low profile is the greatest testament to their true strength.

as respects lack of top 40 hits; chuck it! our society is all hung up on using mba's and slide rules to measure success. many "indies" don't stay that way long if they want to stay in the business. while the ramones did experiment with some less than punk material; they never compromised the original image and sound …. "indie" to the end.

i was particularly intrigued by the interview with richie ... in a suit and tie! i identified. he was cordial but certainly did not seem totally proud of what the ramones past might mean to his current value system and responsibilities. while I certainly endorse the low profile approach he should be proud of the fact that he is a piece of music history and has made many people happy through his work. (i hope he reads this)

the fact that we have already lost three of the best & so young certainly makes me feel the passage of time in my own life. good or bad i'm proud of my life and glad the ramones have been a part of it. my only regret is that my daughter will never get to see them live!

i have promoted "end of the century" to anyone that would listen.

we need more people who are truly too tough to die!
5/11/05
Andrew
PA

The Ramones are my favorite band and I change the channel to see them on tv and it made my day 5/4/05
Matthew Ebersole
Yorktown Virginia

The Ramones were amazing, I was turned onto them when a friend of mine had one of their cd's in high school and didn't like it. I, on the other hand immediateley felt that this was something different and it was thus the catalyst for my love of punk rock. The fact that great movies like this are shown on t.v. and it isn't cable is a testament of how pbs encourages original thinking and does not hesitate to go outside the box. Thank you. 5/3/05
Hanna Dagg
Spokane, Washington

hey, first of all, I think it was amazing that you did a documentary on this subject and the fact that it was so up close and personal with all the band members and friends was truly a breath of fresh air. Thank you!

Anyway, I just thought that even though the Ramones weren't really sucessful at the time, they were the catalyst that started the punk rock scene and to me that would be sucessful. To be respopnsible for statring up an awesome genre of music is the peak of artistic sucess.

Actually, yes, watching the End of the Century did change my impression of the band because I thought they were all buddy, buddy, when in reality that was the total opposite and that's why I liked this program so much; it was honest. 5/3/05
jane fern
alhambra, CA

i loved, loved, loved the show about the ramones, i almost cry because i was so happy to see them again, the show was great, there should be more like this one... i love you guys (the ramones) 5/3/05
Terri Engel
San Diego, California

I first heard the Ramones when I was in high school and we were all into the "underground" punk groups, searching out music that was banned from radio play and obscure and interesting. Then I saw the movie "Rock N' Roll High School" with my first boyfriend. I remember how I loved the music and was mesmerized by Joey - especially when he sang "I want you around"! All of the music they sang in the movie was incredible and it has stayed with me forever... I loved the fact that they sang with energy and passion - you could Feel the music reverberating and you couldn't help starting to dance to it. It's sad that the band didn't feel like they were a "success" commercially - but they WERE a success to so many people! They will never know how many people's lives they touched... I consider them one of the best bands of all time. I'm so glad that I turned on PBS today and saw the documentary and I'm SO glad PBS is airing shows about bands that are true punk rock legends like the Ramones. Keep it up! Ramones Rock in peace 4/29/05
Dominique Ritchot
Montreal, Quebec

Thanks PBS for programming End of The Century and Joe Strummer Rock.

Even if The Ramones never achieved commercial success, the fact remains that they had a major impact on the popular culture of the last leg of the XXth century (and beyond). They created a lifestyle and a mindset for the desafranchized youth which is still recognizable today. They helped unleash a torrent of talented and creative individuals who made their mark in every walk of life. They showed us that we can do whatever we want despite our limitations.

This only armed with guitar, drums and Marshall amps. Their lenghtly impact is, to me, the true mark of success.

Their music is timeless because of its simplicity and melodic qualities. I had the chance to see The Ramones live at least 5 times and they remain among the best live acts I've ever seen, equal with their british contrepart The Clash.

The documentary reminded me of how I mourned the passing of Joey. Sobbing for 5 minutes them reached for a 90 minutes tape of a radio show a friend of mine programmed at a local community radio a couple of years back and played it non-stop for the rest of the day. At the first bars of Blitzkrieg Bop, my fists were punching the air like back in those days. I had payed my tribute. 4/28/05
Hector Ivan
Chicago, IL

My biggest regret in life will always be having a ticket to see the RAMONES in '94 at the RIVIERA in Chicago....and NOT going 'cuz I didn't want to get fired from my job as a "bag-boy". It was either go to work or go to the show and get fired.

So I keep my unripped RAMONES ticket as a reminder that sometimes in life you just have to "go for it" cuz nothing lasts forever....especially the things you love.

The unripped ticket is still a regret, but after having watched END OF THE CENTURY....it's one I can live with. I felt the gap between the legacy of the RAMONES and myself close just a little more. Thank you independent filmmakers and thank you PBS. 4/28/05
Jimmy Thimble
Richmond, Virginia

Our high school theme song in 1978 was the ramones- "I wanna be sedated" which we used to play on the school theater sound system every chance we got. Later I formed my own band, "The Yeast Men" which followed the Ramones formula of "be yourself". I had no idea how much the Ramones had influenced me until I saw the show. Great job, and thank you for cementing an incredible story into our collective history. 4/28/05
Sander Rosenberg
San Miguel de Allende, Me

What a captivating documentary! Wonderful archival footage, thoughtful commentary by the participants (yes, even Dee Dee included!). I was struck by the angst everybody concerned expressed concerning the whole enterprise. What a joyless experience this paricular rock'n'roll odyssey seems to have been! Sad, really, especially considering how influential this seminal band was, yet compelling nonetheless.

Independent lens is one of the best shows on television right now.

Consistently excellent.

Kudos! 4/28/05
Belinda Chieffalo
San Diego, CA

Fantastic documentary on my favorite band ever. In the late 70's I cut school to see them play free outside of city hall in San Fran. I'd play their music on my high school punk radio show at KVHS. My pals and I sat through 2 consecutive screenings of "Rock N' Roll High School" when it came out. I was both elated and haunted by END OF THE CENTURY after watching it. I felt like I stepped right back in time to feel the thrill of how NEW they looked and sounded. But seeing them age and being reminded of their struggle with commercial success saddened me (though I would have hated to share them with the mindless TOP 40 listening masses.) It all seems like it happened yesterday and what's really unimaginable is a world where Joey, Dee Dee and Johnny are gone. GABBA GABBA HEY guys, you were and are THE BEST BAND EVER! 4/27/05
Amy Edwards
Austin, Texas

oh my gawd, someone PLEASE tell me when this program will re-air? I will be in pain until I see it again. Change my impression of the band? - hell yeah! I learned quite a bit and am a better person for it! I saw The Ramones for the first time in 1979 at Randy's Rodeo in San Antonio, Texas. My sister gave me a Ramones cd for X-mas this year! They are timeless. They are of my time. 4/27/05
Bill Dudley
East Brunswick, NJ

I saw the Ramones on a hot humid August night at Mancini's Pub in Pittsburgh sometime in the early 80's. It was stifling hot. Joey had his jacket on about three quarters of the set. I sweat out about 8-10 beers. I saw a lot of bands in my day. The Ramones are at the top of the list. Energy from start to finish. They may not have had commercial appeal, but to anyone who witnessed them live they were awesome.

I enjoyed the show last night. It gave good insight about the band and about being in a band. 4/27/05
Carla Crain
Nashville, TN

I saw End of the Century for the first time last night. I found it to be very provocative and insightful. Particularly, the interpersonal dynamics going on behind the scenes. Also, being only 32 years of age, I had not heard many of the bands early recordings. I will definitely be purchasing some of their music in the near future! 4/27/05
Dan
Tucson

The Ramones captured the true rock n roll spirit. I listened to the Ramones and punk when I was teenager.

Now it's 25 years later I have a music degree and teach and I still find the Ramones and the movement the helped pioneer just as valid as I did many years ago. Great song writing, great band!!! They are true lineage from the early roots of great rock n roll radio. Now I listen to them with my own children. Long live rock n roll!!! 4/27/05
jimi lalumia
ronkonkoma ny

Great film, great subject matter, and fans of the Ramones should visit the site for 70s NY night spot, Max's Kansas City,where the Ramones originally started, the club where the Andy Warhol-David Bowie crowd gathered nightly. www.maxskansascity.com 4/27/05
Steve
Canton, KS

I have come to appreciate the music of The Ramones only in recent years, but this brilliant film clearly demonstrates that they were cultural pioneers of the highest order. 4/27/05
Greg Baxter
Malvern PA

I first saw the Ramones live in 1977, after listening to them on vinyl for about a year. They took music down to its basic element, stripped of its complexity, delivered it with a raw, powerful sound. I was to say the least, completely blown away by this. I would have to say from an artistic and integrity standpoint that the band was wildly successful. There aren't many acts that can say that they influenced rock music for the next 30 years. It was kind of sad watching this film though; I had heard stories about the band being unsatisfied with the lack of recognition that they had received. The fact that more than a few of their prot�g�s had garnered the critical and commercial success that they so deserved and sought after really seemed to take its toll below the surface. Yet , there they were year after year touring and making music. A true testament to their love of what they did, or maybe they just didn't know how to do anything else. Whatever the reason was; it was great being along for the ride. 4/27/05
Katie

The first time I saw the Ramones was in kind of a small, outdoor theatre. There was this little divider between me and Joey and I wasn't having it. I told my boyfriend to hang on tight to the back of my jeans while I hung myself forward out over the fence during the whole set screaming every lyric right back into Joey's face. It felt like we were leaning right into each other song after song. I was completely absorbed by the band. The sound and atmosphere was like pure adrenalin to me.These songs I had listened to over and over on various stereos were now real and alive right in front of me and all around me.

Then the set was over and Joey smiled and I was just blown away. I had the best spot in the house and all it cost me was a wrecked pair of jeans and a scuffed-up tummy.

They were so good, we were ready to leave after that, it just couldn't get any better. Then Blondie came on and really delivered in a completely different way.

One of the best shows EVER.

It was one of the sweetest musical moments of my entire life.

There is a lot of really outstanding new music out there but nothing since has struck the chord in me that those early "underground" bands did.

After watching the show on PBS last night I thought about the last time I saw Dee Dee right before he died. I thought about Joey and Joe Strummer and how that moment in time is really gone forever.

Then I thought about how we fought so hard to make our scene legitimate just so it could become corporate crap for the next generation. Watered down,bottled, and sold to the very same types who couldn't handle the pure version back in the day.(Even though they all insist now that they were there. ;) Our success was our ultimate destruction.

That's just the cycle of things I guess. It's a funny old world.

Excellent job IndependentLens. 4/27/05
Mic Edd
Cincinnati, Ohio

Greetings.

I found the Ramones in the late 1970's and it is no exageration when I say they changed my taste in music forever. I was lucky enough to get to work at a couple of their shows at the Jockey Club in New Port Kentucky. I got the chance to tell Joey that his band had affected my life. He looked at me and said "No s***?, that's really cool man."

Great rock n roll memory about a great rock n roll band!

Thank you PBS!

Peace
Mic 4/27/05
Shana
NJ

Being a jaded, too cool for everything old punk chick made me put the Ramones back on the shelf some years back to make room for "cooler" more obscure punk rock, buit this documentary brought those records right back off the shelf.

The Ramones, needless to say, were the most important and influential American punk band ever, and this documentary was so beautifully done. It's the tribute they truly deserve.

I cried like I knew him at the end when Dee Dee walked away down the hall at the end.

I was fortunate enough to have had the oppportunity to hang out (albeit briefly) with Joey at the now-defunct Coney Island High on St. Mark's Place, and it's a memory I'll always hold dear.

Thank you to the filmmakers, to PBS for airing it, and most importantly to the Ramones themselves for the good times, great music, and making it kind of OK to be the creepy kids.

RIP, Ramones. 4/27/05
Thom Kramer
Naperville, IL

I had heard of the Ramones from the early 80's but for some reason I did not identify with them. I grew up on bands like the Circle Jerks, Minor Threat and Bad Brains and had no idea of how much an influence they were. It was not until the early nineties when the Ramones did a cameo on the Simpson's for Mr. Burns Birthday and I was hooked. After that I purchased the first album and it was like turning on a light switch. Ever since then the Ramones have been my #1.

I saw this movie last October at the Landmark Theater in Chicago and was blown away. I could not wait to get it on DVD and earlier this year I did. I also bought Marky Ramones "Ramones Raw" and enjoyed it. But I must say "The End Of The Century" was the best piece on this pioneering band. I also though it was cool that they acknowledged "Ritchie Ramone" because he was also part of the family for five of the twenty-one years. I have seen other documentaries on the Ramones that completely skipped over him and thought that was unfair.

"Kudos" to PBS for bringing this fine film to us all! To all of the Ramones no longer with us "Rock In Peace". To the remaining members, "We love you guys"! 4/27/05
K.G.

An absolutely amazing & cohesive film document; i'm now in my early 30's, so I caught the tail end of the Ramones touring days. I was unaware of the early history shown (especially the footage from '75).

Summary: I am now convinced that the Ramones were carrying the Hippie/ Counterculture flag to the next logical step (ie. Rebel against those who'd rebelled in the late 60's)...Not unlike what Frank Zappa and The Mothers = to counter the counter culture. (Think of the LP "We're Only In It For The Money").

I hope you continue to show this most worthy film many times, and consider in the future showing similiar. 4/27/05
Evan Leigh Warren
New York NY

The Ramones made fine rock n roll music. They were very successful since many years after their start I got to see them play! Relentless work earned them an important place in history. For a band that doesn't claim to care much about history, that's pretty funny.

They reached fans like me who are not part of the punk dynamic, but they are from a time when I fell in love with rock n roll. Their songs are unique and memorable---this is success. Being from Queens may not have been "cool", but I'm from The Bronx which has been past its prime for a lot longer. Motorhead never got huge commercially either and wrote a nice tribute tune "Ramones" in their honor. Thanks for the tunes, especially "Do you remember rock n roll radio?" 4/27/05
Dr. Margie Garrett

I really can't believe that this band ever wanted to become top 40. We were all so anti-establishment, it is unbelievable. I think that fame would have ruined everybody's fun!!! Problem is that everyone likes a paycheck. (If it makes anybody feel better, mine are prety small). Great documentary. Those of us in our 40's and 50's really long for that wild time of youth, wait, I'm still young!! 4/27/05
tony lazzara
NY

Hello,

I was first introduced to the Ramones in 1979 or 1980 The Film Rock n Roll High School came around and It touched me and many of my freinds in a way that would take me some time to explain.

we were hooked on a look and a sound like no other. Until this day .....I always thought they were as tight a band as The Image they portrayed. Talk about a front.

Either way I dont think it effected there music. It could as well been the thing that fueled it .

The first time I saw the Ramones was at Great Adveture,it was 1981or 82 I beleive it was me who bum rushed the stage and had everyone else following me. I made it to the front of the Stage. I was only 14 year old.

The Ramones were one of my favorite bands Keep up the great work Thanks for the great shows. 4/27/05
David Sykes
Greenwood, SC

I first heard the Ramones when I was in high school in the late 70's. I remember their music was like a breath of fresh air, you can only listen to "Stairway to heaven" so many times. I thought it was unfortunate that some of the band didn't view their career as a success. They've had such an influence on music. The best thing about the documentary was the glimpse of the members as real human beings without their Ramones' mask. 4/27/05
Johnny Fever
Columbia South Carolina

I'm 17 years old and in a band myself. Lately my futures been looking grim after I was recently kicked out of school but after seeing my favorite band The Ramones on PBS it has inspired me to work harder as a musician and song writer and that no matter what never give up and keep going, just like The Ramones. Even if things are hard and don't seem like they're ever going to get better you always have the music. Thank you Ramones, as long as I'm alive you will be too. 4/27/05
Mark Lechak
St. Augustine, Florida

It is was a sad day when the world and I lost the first Ramone. Now the Ramones are all but gone. Joey, Dee Dee, and Johnny. Together with the surviving Ramones, Tommy, Marky, CJ and the others that carried the name Ramone, even if ever so breifly, provided a modern day legend to the fans of music everywhere. How many of todays popular bands have tried to play like them. Or play like some other band that tried to play like them. But even if we set the music aside, the Ramones were icons of endurance. Over 2200 live shows and how many years of cranking out their hearts and souls for their fans? I am so sorry that they had to buy recognition with their lives. Thank you PBS for showing the story of the Ramones to so many that might not have realized what a truly great band the Ramones were. 4/27/05
Marty
scranton, pa

Yes, they did satisfy there narrow fans, but they needed to "mix it up" by trying a couple of blues songs or even some ballads protesting war with vocals that everyone can understand. I think the way they sang led to there inability to "make it big". Honestly, I could not understand half of the lyrics. 4/27/05
MARILYN DYE
CHICAGO, ILL

THANKS PBS U ROCK!!I HAVE LOVE THE RAMONES SINCE 1977, AND I ALWAYS WILL!! 4/27/05
Taylor
Hot Springs, Arkansas

I randomly turn on PBS some times to see if a good show is on. Expecting to hear somthing about a fish or space, needless to say, I was quite happy to see and hear the Ramones in a new and unique way. Thanks PBS now just play it agian! 4/27/05
Linda
Clifton, NJ

The Ramones were truly one of the best, most original, and inspiring rock bands of our time. I've been a fan since 1977, and I feel that a part of me died when first Joey, then Dee Dee, and most recently, Johnny died. But their legacy will live on forever.

The film captured their essence. It was great to see what went on behind the scenes, and to hear the guys talking about their feelings and the politics of being a Ramone. One of the best documentaries about a band I've ever seen. 4/27/05
Stacey
San Diego, CA

What a beautiful documentary. Thanks PBS! I believe it's about time that the true pioneers of american rock (as well as other types of music) get the recognition they deserve. Hey-ho, let's go!! 4/27/05
Mary
New York

Amazing film. Didn't know anything about the Ramones but knew their influence was far reaching. It's a wonder how this band held it together so long even though there was such animosity among them. The filmmakers did an amazing job with the interviews. They wre able to get truth and candidness from the Ramones.

Thank god for indie film makers. Thanks Independent Lens. 4/27/05
Turnbuckle
Murfreesboro TN

Watching the profile of the ramones reminded of an experience in a college english class. The calss was an upper level coarse titled "British Pop Culture" yes i got college credit for writing papaers on James Bond, the Beatles and the Clash. The Professor asked for someone to define the punk music movement. I almost stared holes thru the kid with the white make up and black dyed hair, thrift shop clothes etc. Here was the only time where she could stand up and define and defend her point of view, lifestyle, such and so forth. Nothing. so I clad in my flannel shirt {not tied around my waist), levi's (no holes) and Rockport Docksiders gave my definition. I still wish that girl would have taken advatage of that chance to seen for something as freak or poser. 4/27/05

The Ramones remind me of those late great painters and writers who don't get recognize for their greatness until after their death. As far as them being a sucess Joey Ramone gave hope to us millions around the world who feel like failures and upopular that it is ok to just be yourself. Their music continues to live on today for the exact reason they were disliked in the first place: It wasn't supposed to be. 4/21/05
Ram-1

I've been a fan of Ramones music for 27 years and today I saw my favourite group playing in my TV for the first time! Knowing no trivia behind their music this is truly a fantastic release. It's a must for all music lovers, not just the Ramones fans. This band changed the world! Alexa
Yorktown, NY

I saw this documentary in thearters a couple of months ago and it was absolutley incredible. �It showed you a whole side of the band that you couldnt just see from the music. �It was the best movie I have seen in years.
1/21/05
Phillip
Louisville, KY

Probably the best documentary that I have ever seen on a band, ever.
1/18/05
Mike
San Ramon, CA

Best thing ever! Thanks PBS and thanks Marky and Tommy!
1/18/05
AC Supreme

Thank you PBS. You have just given me a reason to live till April.
1/18/05
Elgin, IL

And once again, PBS comes through. Maybe they'll have some kind of donation thing and have the movie connected to it.
1/12/05
HarborCity, Ca

The Ramones were a big thing and still are!!The music lives on with every person who loves them!!!
1/10/05
ivan gamarra
moreno valley, ca

I LOVE THE RAMONES MORE THAN ANYONE WILL EVER KNOW WE MISS YOU JOHNNY

REST IN PEACE D.D. JOEY &JOHNNY


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