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We're a Happy Family: A Tribute to the Ramones

We're a Happy Family: A Tribute to the Ramones

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Assembling a tribute to a band as enduring -- and as immediately recognizable -- as the Ramones is a tricky business. Do you play by the rules and offer straight covers, or do you push the envelope and use the band's groundbreaking legacy as a springboard to another level of weirdness? Compiler Rob Zombie (who turns


Assembling a tribute to a band as enduring -- and as immediately recognizable -- as the Ramones is a tricky business. Do you play by the rules and offer straight covers, or do you push the envelope and use the band's groundbreaking legacy as a springboard to another level of weirdness? Compiler Rob Zombie (who turns in a nicely grinding "Blitzkrieg Bop") goes the "one from column A, one from column B" route, sprinkling freaky turns by Tom Waits and John Frusciante amid three-chord bashers from Green Day and the Offspring. The best version of all, surprisingly enough, comes from KISS, who once shared bills with the bruddas during the infancy of both bands. Paul Stanley's nasal whine, while not a dead ringer for Joey's, infuses "Do You Remember Rock 'n' Roll Radio" with a similarly plaintive urgency, and his stripped-down guitar line propels the tune with just the right edge. Not every contributor is as in tune with the spirit: Neither Metallica (whose "53rd and 3rd" is overly suffused with ego and the wrong kind of cartoonishness) or U2 (whose take on "Beat on the Brat" is too limpid and detached to have any effect) come close to connecting. Fortunately, the hits far outnumber the misses, both in the pop realm (like Garbage's slinky "I Just Wanna Have Something to Do") and thrash 'n' bash territory (such as Rancid's "Sheena Is a Punk Rocker"). Somewhere, Joey and Dee Dee Ramone are "gabba gabba"-ing in approval.

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Bradley Torreano
In the wake of both Joey's and Dee Dee Ramone's untimely deaths, We're a Happy Family -- a star-studded tribute featuring Metallica, the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Garbage, and Eddie Vedder -- was a well-timed reminder of the Ramones' lasting influence. The Pretenders focus the intense yearning of "Something to Believe In" into a spacious ballad, Tom Waits transforms "The Return of Jackie and Judy" into a wild backwoods blues song, and the Red Hot Chili Peppers add waves of melancholy guitar to their Latin-flavored reworking of "Havana Affair." These are moments when you can experience the Ramones' familiar songwriting while savoring the performers' distinct sound.
Rolling Stone - Barry Walters
The Ramones themselves gave bubblegum respect, but never such reverence.
Blender - Paul Du Noyer
The bands sound elated.... In all, gabba-gabba-wonderful.

Product Details

Release Date:


  1. Havana Affair @@Red Hot Chili Peppers
  2. Blitzkrieg Bop @@Rob Zombie
  3. I Believe In Miracles @@Eddie Vedder & Zeke
  4. 53rd & 3rd @@Metallica
  5. Beat On The Brat @@U2
  6. Do You Remember Rock 'N' Roll Radio @@Kiss
  7. The KKK Took My Baby Away @@Marilyn Manson
  8. I Just Wanna Have Something To Do @@Garbage
  9. Outsider @@Green Day
  10. Something To Believe In @@The Pretenders
  11. Sheena Is A Punk Rocker @@Rancid
  12. I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend @@Pete Yorn
  13. I Wanna Be Sedated @@The Offspring
  14. Here Today, Gone Tomorrow @@Rooney
  15. Return of Jackie & Judy @@Tom Waits
  16. Daytime Dilemma (Dangers Of Love) @@Eddie Vedder & Zeke
  17. Today Your Love, Tomorrow The World @@John Frusciante

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Johnny Paycheck   Drums
Marilyn Manson   Organ,Vocals,Loops,Drones
Kurt Bloch   Guitar
Josh Freese   Drums
Daniel Shulman   Bass
Tim Skold   Mellotron
Madonna Wayne Gacy   Synthesizer,Bass,Loops
Blind Marky Felchtone   Guitar
John 5   Soloist
Pete Yorn   Bass,Guitar,Drums,Vocals
Beth Halper   Background Vocals

Technical Credits

Metallica   Producer
Red Hot Chili Peppers   Engineer
Paul Stanley   Producer
Rancid   Producer
Marilyn Manson   Producer
Chad Brown   Contributor
Don Fleming   Producer
Scott Humphrey   Producer
Chrissie Hynde   Producer
Joey Ramone   Composer
Dee Dee Ramone   Composer
Johnny Ramone   Composer
Tommy Ramone   Composer
Bob Rock   Producer,Engineer
Rick Rubin   Producer
Jim Scott   Engineer
Tim Skold   Arranger,Programming,Producer
Mike Hedges   Producer
Rob Zombie   Producer
Garbage   Producer
Stephen King   Liner Notes
Matt Bayles   Engineer
Mike Gillies   Engineer
Frank Gryner   Engineer
Ger McDonnell   Engineer
Dave Carlock   Engineer
Dave Reed   Engineer
Billy Bush   Engineer
William Samuels   Engineer
Pete Yorn   Producer

Customer Reviews

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We're a Happy Family: A Tribute to the Ramones 2.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
With the recent deaths of founding Ramone Jeffery Hyman (Joey Ramone) and Dee Dee, a certain sense of nostalgia began creeping back into my cd collection w/ a good chunk of their back catalogue getting steady play in my cd player, most notably, the seminal Ramones album (yes, they were once albums) Rocket to Russia. When news of a tribute CD announced and, better yet (and something of an anomaly), the cover bands weren't the usual suspects; NOFX, MXPX, Me First and the Gimme Gimmes, or any other Fat Wreckchords garage band; These were from the power players (former, in some cases) in the industry, U2, Metallica, Rob Zombie, Kiss, Offspring, and the Red Hot Chili Peppers. This meant that the Ramones were not only getting the recognition they were posthumously overdue, but the tribute would have accomplished musicians and their high production values. Whoo hooo. Twenty seconds into Rob Zombies cover of Blitzkreig Bop, covered in nine feet of audio feces, my enthusiasm was somewhat curbed. Skipping around to hear U2's limp wristed take on Beat on the Brat, my hopes plummeted to earth faster than a skydiver with no parachute. Metallica's 53rd & 3rd was somewhat on target, but by this point I wasn't really into the music so much as it was just glancing off my eardrums as I tended to other business. Only the Offspring managed to capture the sonic fury of the Ramones in a way that was reminiscent of the greatest unheralded band in the business. We're a Happy Family is not so much a *tribute* as it is an insult to the band that at one time changed the face of Rock 'n' Roll, stripping it down to bare essentials and played music that scared your parents. If you're genuinely interested in a tribute to the Ramones, skip We're An Unhappy Cover Album and pick up Ramones Mania and All the Stuff & More Vols. I & II, and Gabba Gabba Hey! to your hearts content.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I am surprised that Rob Zombie couldn't get Vanilla Ice out to cover a song; probably the only thing that could've made this "tribute" (I use that term loosely) even worse. You could say alot of things about the Ramones, good or bad, but one thing you could never say is that they were BORING. This disc should be given out as a sleep aid. I would suggest that if you could find "Rock and Roll Radio" by Kiss somewhere else, to snag it and not worry about the rest of the songs on this CD, because you won't miss anything else. In the fair to middling range are The Offspring, Garbage, and Pete Yorn. Red Hot Chili Peppers prove once again that they were much better when they were on drugs; perhaps they should have listened to the Ramones and sniffed some glue before recording. Marilyn Manson apparently had an instumental track lying around the studio that wasn't good enough for the last album, so he used it in the background while spooky reading the lyrics to "KKK took my baby away." Metallica also proves they just don't get it anymore, and should retire. Rancid shows that their singer can't even handle Joey Ramones vocal range (he is even outsung on another song by Tom Waits,) and should stick to English punk cover songs. Lastly, why is this considered a tribute? If I was in the Ramones I would be insulted to have this released. I honestly believe that a record company said, "we really wanna make some money, so let's pick a bunch of bands that sell really well. Who cares if they like the Ramones or even sound good? We'll make a mint." No wonder the record companies are losing money at a fast clip; they aren't giving the fans what they want.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Most every artist has managed to capture at least a piece of what made the Ramones tick. The only soft spot on this album would be Metallica's 53rd&3rd. I agree with most every review of the cd I've seen, Kiss captured the spirit that is the Ramones.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The lasting influence of New York¿s seminal punk pioneers is celebrated with a varied and eclectic lineup of notable musical artists on ¿We¿re a Happy Family ¿ A Tribute to the Ramones.¿ From the no-frills bombast of Rob Zombie¿s ¿Blitzkrieg Bop¿ and Pete Yorn¿s forlorn ¿I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend¿ to an almost spiritual reading of ¿I Believe in Miracles¿ delivered by Eddie Vedder and Zeke, the collection seldom disappoints. Although KISS¿ ¿Do You Remember Rock `N¿ Roll Radio?¿ fails on every imaginable level, U2¿s melodic ¿Beat On The Brat,¿ the Pretenders¿ gloomy ¿Something to Believe In¿ and Garbage¿s propulsive ¿I Just Wanna Have Something to Do¿ are among the gems on the rewarding disc. This is a compilation CD that belongs in the collection of every Ramones ¿ and rock ¿ fan¿s library.