Hola, Joe. A tribute to Blondie’s dear old comrade Joey Ramone, who passed on in 2001 at the too old to rock’n'roll, too young to die age of 49. I’ve never had much use for Ramone et al. but I find this a moving tribute. It’s more personal than star-burnishing. There’s something vaguely grave-robberish about the whole tribute album industry, and it seems like every time anyone famous dies there’s a million mawkish ‘homages’ from people they barely had any connection with. The attitude seems to be, ‘let’s grab a piece of attention while everyone’s thinking about this dead person’. There’s definitely a whiff of exploitation on the wind whenever there’s a celebrity death. Ramone himself was recently ‘exhumed’ via posthumous new album. I can’t judge the quality of that or the motivations of the exhumers, nor do I even care very much about Ramone’s legacy, but I do feel that there’s something profoundly undignified about digging up and releasing old tapes the artist didn’t deem worthy of finishing during his lifetime. It feels like a desperate stab to bleed some extra cash out of a dead icon’s memory. And if you can’t get cash at least get some press. This isn’t like that at all. For one thing, Joe’d been dead two years when The Curse of Blondie was released. And of course, this isn’t just anybody, this is Debbie Harry – a onetime lover and lifelong friend – writing about some plainly very personal recollections. About as fine a tribute as Joey Ramone has ever gotten, and top of the list for best tributes to dead rock stars in general.