Dylan Feese believes there should be a Ramones festival in Louisville similar to Abbey Road on the River, an event that honors the legacy of The Beatles.
This weekend, he and his band, the Goodfellas, will be doing their best to honor the former band with a pair of events, first at Against the Grain Brewery on Friday, Sept. 21, and then at Guestroom Records on Saturday, Sept. 22.
“Sometimes I think it’s just forgotten,” he said, referring to the music of the seminal punk band that is best known for songs like “Blitzkrieg Bop” and “I Wanna Be Sedated.” “I’m trying to keep it going. We’re doing a service to the legacy of the music to remind people of how amazing the Ramones were and are.”
The events coincide with the reissue of one of the Ramones’ most critically acclaimed albums, “Road to Ruin,” which was released in 1978. As such, the two-night party is called Road to Ruin: A 40th Anniversary Celebration of the Ramones.
Feese and his band have been playing as a Ramones tribute band for about four years, booking a handful of shows per year, he said. This will be the first time the band will play in costume.
“I’m full-on Joey,” he said, referring to lead singer Joey Ramone. “There will be some wigs, T-shirts, jeans, sneakers — as close as we can get.”
The main focus, however, is on the music presented in the roughly 45-minute set. The goal is to be precise and loud, he said, to “master these songs and bang them out … even better than the Ramones sometimes.”
At Against the Grain on Friday, the event is being billed as a Cretin Cocktail Party from 8 p.m.-midnight. A Ramones-themed beer, Da Bruddahs, will be served, as well as cocktails such as Gimme Gimme Shock Treatment, a shocktart gimlet; Havana Affair, a traditional daiquiri; Poison Heart, a bourbon cocktail; and Needles and Pins, made with tequila and pomegranate.
On Saturday, the band will throw a Blitzkrieg Block Party, starting with a set at Guestroom Records, 1806 Frankfort Ave., at 6 p.m.
“We’re really hoping some things rattle off the walls and maybe we blow the front door off the place,” Feese said.
Afterward, attendees can slam dance two doors down to Hilltop Tavern for an after-party, featuring cocktails with names like I Wanna Be Sedated, Rockaway Beach and California Sun, plus other drink specials.
A Ramones playlist by way of Pandora will be playing, and the highlight will be a screening of the band’s 1979 film, “Rock ’n’ Roll High School.”
Feese said part of why he continues to pursue shows for Goodfellas is part of a “secret dream” to bring the Ramones to the height of awareness and appreciation he believes the band deserves, at least locally.
“I sit there and look at Abbey Road on the River and think, ‘There should be a Ramones festival,’ ” he said. “To me, the Ramones are just as important as The Beatles. They’re just as big, just as influential. They just fell on unfortunate times in the wave of punk and didn’t get the notoriety they deserved. I care maybe too deeply sometimes.”