Blitzkrieg Bop

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"Blitzkrieg Bop"
Single by Ramones
from the album Ramones
Released February 1976
Format 7"
Recorded January 1976
Genre Punk rock
Length 2:12
Label Sire/ABC
Writer(s) Tommy Ramone, Dee Dee Ramone[1]
Producer(s) Craig Leon
Ramones singles chronology
"Blitzkrieg Bop"
(1976)
"I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend"
(1976)
Music sample

"Blitzkrieg Bop" is a song by the American punk rock band Ramones. It was released as the band's debut single in February 1976 in the United States. It appeared as the opening track on the band's debut album, Ramones, that was released April 23, 1976. [2]

The song, whose composition was credited to the band as a whole, was written by drummer Tommy Ramone (music and lyrics) and bassist Dee Dee Ramone (lyrics).[3] Based on a simple three-chord pattern, "Blitzkrieg Bop" opens with the chant "Hey! Ho! Let's go!" The song is popular at sporting events where "Hey! Ho! Let's go!" is sometimes shouted as a rallying cry, particularly in the city of Glasgow where fans chant "Hey! Ho! Glasgow!" It is being used by the online electrical retailer ao.com (formerly Appliances Online) in their adverts as "A! O! Let's Go!"

"Blitzkrieg Bop" is number 92 on the Rolling Stone list of The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time. In March 2005, Q magazine placed it at number 31 in its list of the 100 Greatest Guitar Tracks, and in 2008 Rolling Stone placed it number 18 on top 100 of Best Guitar Songs of All Time. In 2009 it was named the 25th greatest hard rock song of all time by VH1.[4]

Origin and meaning[edit]

"Blitzkrieg Bop" was named after the German World War II tactic blitzkrieg, which means "lightning war". The song was mainly written by drummer Tommy Ramone, while bassist Dee Dee Ramone came up with the title (the song was originally called "Animal Hop"). Dee Dee also changed one line: the original third verse had the line "shouting in the back now", but Dee Dee changed it to "shoot 'em in the back now". The precise meaning and subject matter of the song are, unlike many of The Ramones' other early compositions, somewhat vague and obscure. Tommy Ramone tells about the chant in Ramones: Soundtrack Of Our Lives, written by Jari-Pekka Laitio-Ramone: "I came up with the chant walking home from the grocery store carrying a bag of groceries. It was based on the line: 'High Hose nipped her toes' from the song, "Walking The Dog" by Rufus Thomas."[5]

Composition[edit]

"Blitzkrieg Bop" is a 4/4 time song written in the key of A. It contains four chords; A major (I), B minor (II), D major (IV), and E major (V).[6][7] The song relies heavily on the I, IV, and V chords, most notably used in the intro and verses in the form of the I–IV–V chord progression. The II chord appears only briefly towards the end of the refrain.[6][7] The guitarist played the entire song with barre chord shapes, as these were signature to his playing style.[6][8][9][10] The bassist simply played the root note of whatever chord the guitarist was playing.[8] Both the rhythm guitar and bass parts, played using downstrokes exclusively,[8] utilize almost constant eighth notes to generate a "wall of sound". The singer's vocal melody relies on five of the seven notes found in the A major scale; A, B, C#, D, and E. The drummer maintains a steady backbeat on the kick and snare throughout the entire song. Constant eighth notes are played on the hi hat cymbals during the verses, and on the floor tom whilst the singer shouts "Hey, Ho, Let's Go!", whereas quarter notes are used on the ride cymbal during the refrain. Occasional crashes are used to accentuate certain beats.

The song was originally played at a very fast tempo (Allegrissimo), or roughly 177 bpm. When the band performed the song live, they started to play it at even faster tempos, gradually increasing the speed throughout their career. At the band's final show, they played the song at an extremely fast tempo (Prestissimo), well above 200 bpm.

Dedications[edit]

  • The punk rock band Blitzkrieg Bop took their name after the song title.
  • A monthly club night at the Arches in Glasgow is named after the song.

Notable cover versions[edit]

Uses in popular culture[edit]

Bibliography[edit]

  • Bessman, Jim (1993). Ramones: An American Band (New York: St. Martin's). ISBN 0-312-09369-1

References[edit]

  1. ^ [1][dead link]
  2. ^ Laitio-Ramone, Jari-Pekka (October 1, 1997). "Something about the Ramones history". Something about the Ramones history (Jari-Pekka Laitio-Ramone). Retrieved 2016-01-01. 
  3. ^ Bessman (1993), p. 48.
  4. ^ "VH1 Top 100 Hard Rock Songs". Spreadit Music. Retrieved February 7, 2009. 
  5. ^ Laitio-Ramone, Jari-Pekka (May 19, 2009). "Ramones: Soundtrack Of Our Lives". Blitzkrieg Bop's chant (Jari-Pekka Laitio-Ramone). Retrieved 2016-01-01. 
  6. ^ a b c Hal Leonard (2001). Ramones Guitar Anthology. Hal Leonard Publishing. ISBN 978-0-7692-0594-6. 
  7. ^ a b Ubisoft. Rocksmith 2014. 
  8. ^ a b c Jim Bessman (May 15, 1993). Ramones: An American Band. St. Martin's Griffin. p. 13. ISBN 978-0-312-09369-3. 
  9. ^ Michael Molenda. The Guitar Player Book: 40 Years Of Interviews, Gear, And Lessons From The World's Most Celebrated Guitar Magazine. Backbeat Books. p. 71. ISBN 978-0-87930-782-0. 
  10. ^ Johnny Ramone, "Commando: The Autobiography Of Johnny Ramone", p. 68
  11. ^ "23. Joe Strummer & The Mescaleros - Blitzkrieg Bop. | Video Youtube - NMETV Latest Music Videos and Clips". Nme.Com. Retrieved 2014-02-09. 
  12. ^ Despres, Shawn (2011-07-14). "Shonen Knife "Osaka Ramones" | The Japan Times". Search.japantimes.co.jp. Retrieved 2015-09-30. 
  13. ^ William Ruhlmann (2004-11-23). "Golddiggas Headnodders & Pholk Songs - The Beautiful South | Songs, Reviews, Credits". AllMusic. Retrieved 2015-09-30. 
  14. ^ Nathan Bush (1996-09-10). "Genius + Love = Yo La Tengo - Yo La Tengo | Songs, Reviews, Credits". AllMusic. Retrieved 2015-09-30. 
  15. ^ Babyshambles: Blitzkrieg Bop, My Taratata. Youtube.com. 2013. Retrieved 2015-09-30. 
  16. ^ "Routine Republic" 2015 Taco Bell Breakfast Short Film. Youtube.com. 2015. Retrieved 2015-09-30. 

External links[edit]