Tommy was a Hungarian immigrant, born Erdélyi Tamás in Budapest, who came to the US in 1957, and played on the band's first three albums, co-producing two of them, before leaving in 1978, ostensibly because he was exhausted by the constant touring.
He kept his links with the Ramones, co-producing 1974′s Road To Ruin and 1984′s Too Tough To Die. He also produced the Replacements’ 1985 major-label debut Tim and Redd Kross’s 1987 album Neurotica. Later on, he played in the old-timey folk duo Uncle Monk, who released one self-titled album in 2006.
A message post on The Ramones Facebook page reads:
We are saddened to announce the passing of Tommy Ramone (nee Erdelyi), the original drummer for the Ramones, earlier today, 11 July 2014.
"It wasn't just music in The Ramones: it was an idea. It was bringing back a whole feel that was missing in rock music – it was a whole push outwards to say something new and different. Originally it was just an artistic type of thing; finally I felt it was something that was good enough for everybody." - Tommy Ramone, 1978
RIP Tommy.Below, watch a video of The Ramones performing their 1977's classic song "Sheena Is a Punk Rocker".
RIP Mr. Ramone