To coincide with the release of The Prissteens “Demos & Rarities, I’ve decided to pick the brains of former Prissteens members Lori Lindsay and Mighty Joe Vincent about their memories of sharing a rather unique bond with fellow cretins The Ramones in 90’s New York City. Here’s what I found out!
50thirdand3rd: Tell me about The Prissteens relationship with The Ramones. I know Joey had great affection for The Prissteens. Was there any truth to the rumors that Joey and Dee Dee helped The Prissteens get signed?
Lori Lindsay: I have been thinking about this recently because I went to the Ramones 40th anniversary exhibit at the Queens Museum about a month ago. I was so proud because there was an old flyer with The Prissteens listed as a supporting band for one of Joey’s Birthday Bashes included in the exhibit. That was so cool for me, and it made me reflect on the relationship that our band and I had with Joey. I have memories of Joey calling me on the phone first thing in the morning almost every day for a period of time, and I would talk to him while I got ready for work (at the time I worked at a small designer clothing store called Daryl K on E. 6th St. in the East Village). Then I would tell him that I had to get off the phone so I could get to work, and I would hear the phone ringing as soon as I would walk into the store – and it would be Joey calling me at the store to resume our morning conversation. Honestly, at the time I didn’t really get how cool that was…but anyway, yeah, he was so supportive. He included us in everything he was doing at the time. We played and sang with him and Ronnie Spector (who was one of my singing idols), and he asked us to play specific songs for his birthday bashes. One of those songs was “Soldier Boy” by The Shirelles. It was really fun to do that in his honor, but I’m not sure we did such a great job. But we had a great time arranging it and performing it for him nonetheless.
As for rumors that Joey and Dee Dee helped get us signed, I really don’t know anything about that. I knew that we all hung around together with our manager Jim Marshall and our future A/R guy Howard Thompson, so yeah maybe Joey and Dee Dee being supportive validated what we were doing in the eyes of the label.
Joe Vincent: When I was a kid, the first Ramones album came out and completely blew my mind. There was nothing else like it at the time, it sounded like it came from outer space! I listened to it a billion times, until it became imprinted in my DNA.
During the months leading up to recording our album, I rediscovered Ramones and once again was completely amazed by the sheer stupid genius of it. The poetry, the purity of it. This was a music like no other; Nothing could be more Rock n Roll than this. This is what we had to aim for when writing songs. That and the Jackson 5.
After the album came out, Joey was on MTV and said we were his favorite new band! Unbelievable! Joey booked us on all kinds of shows! Once, while we were doing a radio interview on WHTG 106.3 Asbury Park. Joey remarked how much he liked our songs. I turned to him, my idol, and said “I was just trying to be you!”
The Prissteens “Demos & Rarities” is available June 21st on Girlsville.