I never felt out of control. It was just the way I lived my life
Johnny Ramone spent 22 years as one of the founding members of the ground-breaking New York punk band, The Ramones.
Despite their name, the Ramones were not actually related to each other. The members of the group each adopted the surname, taking it from Paul McCartney’s original stage name, ‘Ramon’.
Johnny Ramone was actually born John William Cummings. Born to a middle-class existence, he gave up a job as a construction worker to form the band.
The group enjoyed a lively existence between 1974 and 1996 and have been cited as a major influence on everyone from the Sex Pistols to Busted. They were, in fact, more successful in the UK than in the US, enjoying hits with Teenage Lobotomy and Sheena is a Punk Rocker.
In 1996, the group disbanded. They remained on good terms. “I know that you have to deal with a life without applause, and I'm looking forward to trying it,” said Johnny as he approached retirement. “A lot of musicians are addicted to it and won't get out.”
Selling all his guitars, before his death from cancer, Johnny is still remembered as one of the greatest guitarists of all time.