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Dee Dee Ramone | Deadline Demos

The Ramones bassist's aborted U.K. solo project finally sees the light of day.

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Poor Dee Dee. He always seemed to get the short end of the stick. In The Ramones, despite penning classics like Rockaway Beach, Chinese Rocks, Too Tough To Die and Now I Wanna Sniff Some Glue, he ended up playing third banana to Joey and Johnny, relegated to shouting “1, 2, 3, 4!” before every song onstage. And pretty much every solo project he attempted — like this surprisingly solid batch of demos intended for a post-punk guitar-rock trio featuring a British rhythm section — never got off the ground or crashed and burned. Pity. While these rudimentary numbers aren’t exactly reinventing the rock ’n’ roll wheel or anything, they’re certainly no worse than any of the forgettable junk his old bandmates were cranking out at the time.

THE PRESS RELEASE: “In 1989 Dee Dee Ramone fled both New York and The Ramones and headed to Europe. After a brief aborted link-up with Stiv Bators and Johnny Thunders in Paris, he moved to London intending to seek out fellow punk rock contemporaries with a plan for a fresh start and to form a new band. Dee Dee was introduced by mutual friend Brian James (ex-Damned/Lords of the New Church) to Alan Lee Shaw (ex-Rings/Maniacs) and George Butler (ex-Lighting Raiders) and a band formed with the proposed name of Dee Dee Ramone’s Deadline. With rehearsals underway featuring Alan on bass /backing vocals, George on drums and Dee Dee on guitar/lead vocals, the project was soon up and running and in the process of negotiating a recording deal with Overground Records, with the release promoted with a UK tour. But due to unforeseen circumstances (unfortunately the fragile state of Dee Dee’s mental/physical shape), the project was sadly and frustratingly brought to an abrupt end before any studio recordings or gigs could be completed. The demos from 1989 are the only recordings that occurred. They are works in progress, forming an important historical record that show flashes of Dee Dee’s genius as one of punk’s most important original songwriters. The songs never appeared on any of Dee Dee’s other releases and but for this recently re-discovered tape would have been lost forever.”