Independent Student Newspaper for the University of Texas at San Antonio

The Paisano

Independent Student Newspaper for the University of Texas at San Antonio

The Paisano

Independent Student Newspaper for the University of Texas at San Antonio

The Paisano

A night with Marky Ramone

Longest-standing drummer of the Ramones hosts meet-and-greet events in San Antonio
Lauren Hernandez

Punk music without the Ramones is like a day without sunlight. The Ramones may not have invented punk rock, but in 1974, they sure as hell did characterize it. With their three-chord rhythms and leather jackets, the Ramones toured almost nonstop from 1974 to 1996. For 1,700 of those shows, Marky Ramone was on the drums every single night.

In 1978, Marky, who had previously drummed in hard rock bands Dust and The Voidoids, replaced Tommy Ramone as the Ramones’ official drummer. This past weekend, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Inductee stopped in San Antonio to speak on his experiences, autograph his book and meet hundreds of die-hard fans.

Marky’s San Antonio Blitzkrieg involved meet-and-greet events at The Corn Pound, Pica Pica Plaza and Monsters and Mayhem, a newly opened collectibles shop at Wonderland of Americas Mall

Marky’s appearance at The Corn Pound on Friday, Aug. 25, was the only event of the weekend featuring a Q&A and discussion panel, and according to Bell Solloa, CEO and founder of High Voltage Music SA and coordinator of the event, this was the first discussion panel that Marky had been a part of in a very long time. 

And what a unique experience it was. With only twelve days to plan, Solloa knew that The Corn Pound would be the perfect destination for Marky to come and chat with the Southside. Flagship Records already had a shelf of Ramones’ records on display, and the walls were adorned with an entire gallery of prints from late photographer Lindell “Tiger” Tate that showcase photos of the Ramones’ past San Antonio performances. 

So at 7 p.m., quite a few dedicated fans filled the store, lining up to shake Marky’s hand and browsing the vinyl, prints and t-shirts while they waited. I chatted with Mr. Skunk for a bit, who was helping run the event, selling Tate’s prints and his own screen-printed Ramones shirts. He showed me his signed leather jacket and told me about how he chatted with Marky, who pointed to a spot on his arm, asking Mr. Skunk if it looked like a tick bite. 

The crowd headed outside at around 8:30 p.m. for the discussion panel, which was hosted by Tim Stegall, an Austin-based music journalist, who had actually interviewed all of the original Ramones before they passed. He and Marky discussed everything from New York punk to muscle cars. Marky recounted a story about a fight he got into in the filthy CBGB bathroom, he talked about how marketing his pasta sauce got out of hand, he discussed his beginning as a hard rock drummer in New York, mentioning his failed audition for the New York Dolls and his successes in Dust, Estus, The Voidoids and most obviously the Ramones. He smiled reminiscing on the tours and the late nights, and he was happy to answer the intimate crowd’s eclectic questions about the Canadian beer commercial that the Ramones wrote a jingle for, his bands outside of the Ramones and the writing and success of his new book. 

“We shocked the world three chords at a time,” Marky exclaimed, knowing that this event equally shocked the punks of San Antonio. 

Solloa explained that she “wanted to make something happen here” and that is exactly what she did. Despite the fact that they were missing a couple of key players, the “tight-knit little crew” at The Corn Pound successfully hosted an international Rock and Roll legend, creating an unforgettable night for all in attendance, and making those who missed it insanely jealous.

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About the Contributor
Lauren Hernandez
Lauren Hernandez, Assistant Arts & Life Editor
Lauren (she/her) is a second year English student at UTSA. After graduation she plans on attending law school. Outside of The Paisano you can usually find her at a concert taking pictures, hiking in the woods, watching movies or thrifting with her sister.

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