Richie Ramone rips it up at the Airlie festival
THE kick drum of punk-rock legend Richie Ramone reverberated through the hearts of the crowd last night to end the opening day of the 2016 Airlie Beach Festival of Music.
Joined on-stage by the Australian young-gun guitarist Ronnie Simmons and the punked-up bassist Claire Noiziee the band threw in a few classics in to the mix and demonstrated why the Ramones were one of the most influential American punk bands of the 1980s.
"There is only one Ramones and I do some because I know the crowd can connect with some of those songs. I don't do a whole night of it, I have two solo albums," he said.
Richie was 24 when he joined the Ramones in 1983 and said doing Ramones songs conjures memories of playing with former Ramones members Joey and Dee Dee.
"It's hard you know because I miss the guys when I do those songs."
"If you do too many you sound like a cover band, but I think it adds a lot to the show, to mix it up a bit."
Richie admitted the majority of the crowd at the Airlie Beach Festival of Music wouldn't have even listened to his solo records and many he suspected, only knew a few Ramones songs.
"A crowd like this they don't know anything. They don't know my stuff and probably only heard three Ramones songs."
Though the band only arrived in the Whitsundays at 4pm for an 8.45pm gig Richie was blown away by the sight of Airlie Beach.
"We are staying in a beautiful op there and the view is spectacular. I wish I had a couple of days off here but we gotta leave at 11am tomorrow (today) so we will try and get up early and walk around a bit, this place is beautiful."
Richie said it has been a "gift" to be part of a band that was at the fore of shaping the American punk sound and is one of the few super punk acts to cross over and influence modern pop culture.
"It has been a gift, I was very fortunate. I was 24-years-old when I got in that band. They are one of the greatest bands in history and changed the sound of music at that time, it's a blessing."
Richie Ramone capped off a day at the fourth Airlie Beach Music Festival which also saw acts like Russell Morris, Chain, James T (Canned Heat) and Bill Chambers take the stage.
Today from 3pm on the main stage at the Whitsunday Sailing Club you can catch Phil Emmanuel and the Continental Drift, Tiki Taane at 3.45pm, Bourbon Street at 4.30, Ganggajang at 5.15, Mason Rack Band at 6.15, Potbelleez at 7.30 and Tim Finn at 8.45.