Just the other day I was flipping through Marky Ramones’s book at Barnes and Noble. Yes, there’s probably more than enough books on The Ramones, although this one was definitely pretty good as well, and it’s sad to think that all the original members are gone.
Now Rolling Stone reports that one of Johnny Ramones’s original guitars, a Mosrite, has just sold at auction for a whopping $71,000. It’s not a record for a famous player’s guitar, but for a punk rock guitar it’s definitely big bucks. (Not to mention the Mosrite model wasn’t a top-notch brand, like a rare Fender or Gibson.)
According to this report, Johnny owned nine Mosrite guitars, or at least there’s nine that were owned by him that are known to be out there, including this one, which Johnny sold to a driver for the band in 1980. This item beat out a hand written letter by Jerry Garcia, which went for $32,500. Last October one of Joey Ramones’s black leather jackets sold through the same auction house, RR Auction, and it went for $7,000.
With punk being an accepted part of the culture these days, it’s a trip to see Ramones t-shirts everywhere on every day kids, and we owe The Ramones a huge debt. They not only launched punk, but they also inspired average looking people to start bands. I remember the night Joey Ramone passed away Bono quieted the audience and made the announcement. The Ramones showed U2 the way, and showed them that you didn’t have to be pretty or a virtuoso to start a band and make good music.