Tommy Ramone's favorite Jewish punks
Mon Jun 8 2009
This Thursday the YIVO Institute for Jewish Research hosts "Loud Fast Jews!," a seminar about Jews in punk rock. Hosted by Guitar World editor Richard Bienstock, the panel includes New York punks/Jews Lenny Kaye, Handsome Dick Manitoba, Chris Stein and Tommy Ramone—the Ramones' sole surviving original member and, along with Joey, the band's Jewish contingent. Born Tom Erdelyi in Budapest, Sir Ramone famously produced the Replacements' Tim and is currently half of the bluegrass duo Uncle Monk. Time Out asked the musician to write up a list of his favorite five Jewish punks. Always the punk, Ramone chose six:
Bob Dylan: "Because he is a great songwriter who always did what he wanted to do even when others were telling him he should be doing something else."
Lenny Bruce: "Because nobody was going to tell him what he could and could not say to be funny."
Billy Wilder: "He directed and wrote all kinds of movies, all of them great and most of them subversive."
Peter Lorre: "The great Hungarian actor who played the most distasteful characters in the coolest way possible."
Serge Gainsbourg: "The French singer and actor who lived life as a distasteful character in the coolest way possible."
William Gaines: "He was the editor of EC Comics and Mad magazine, which were profound influences on punk sensibilities."