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Tommy Ramone created an essential punk rock beat
Tommy Ramone created an essential punk rock beat

If it's true, as punk band the Slits have argued, that "in the beginning there was rhythm," then Tommy Ramone's drum pound marked a new day rising. The original drummer for seminal New York punk band the Ramones, Tommy, born Erdelyi Tamas, died Friday at age 65 after a long battle with cancer, but his basic, urgent contribution to popular music over the course of the band's first three albums remains wildly alive. Any time you hear a punk band tearing through a three-minute jam, the drummer in the back is likely echoing a no-nonsense beat that Tommy helped codify. If you've ever sung along to the Ramones' "I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend," you're...

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