Saturday, February 28, 1976

This Month in 1976: Ramones “Blitzkrieg Bop” released

Blitzkrieg Bop


Writer(s): Tommy Ramone, Dee Dee Ramone (see lyrics here)

Released: February 1976

Peak: 2 CL, 1 CO, 3 DF (Click for codes to charts.)

Sales (in millions): -- US, 0.2 UK

Airplay/Streaming (in millions): -- radio, 25.65 video, 330.58 streaming


Click on award for more details.

About the Song:

The Ramones formed in Queens, New York, in 1974. They “were ground zero” TC for punk rock. “They had the look – torn jeans, motorcycle jackets, bangs, and sneakers.” TC They “took their musical cues from the past…rock ‘n’ roll, surf, Phil Spector, and 1960s garage-rock were the inspirations.” TB “The music was stripped back to the barest of essentials: no drum fills, no guitar solos, just short, fast four-chord songs with catchy tunes and the dumbest of lyrics.” TB

“Today, it doesn’t seem like the recipe for a revolution…but in an era gorged on musical excess, it was indeed revolutionary.” TB“The Ramones…drill straight to the very heart of what made rock ‘n’ roll so exciting in the first place.” TB They “were the first punk-rock band and ‘Blitzkrieg Bop’ was the first punk-rock single.” TB

It ranks as the top punk rock song of all time according to Dave’s Music Database. It wasn’t a hit when it was first released, but was “a perfect call to arms,” TC “a wake-up call for a generation.” TB Author Dave Thompson called the song’s famous “hey ho, let’s go” “the chant that launched a million soundalikes.” DT It has also become “a global rallying cry at sporting events.” WK

Drummer Tommy Ramone was the main writer on the song. Bassist Dee Dee Ramone came up with the title, which was originally “Animal Hop.” WK The song’s meaning is “somewhat vague and obscure” but Tommy said it was about a young audience going to a rock concert. WK They got the idea for the chant from the Bay City Rollers’ disco hit “Saturday Night.” WK


Related Links:

First posted 4/17/2024.

Peter Frampton “Show Me the Way” live version released this month

Show Me the Way

Peter Frampton

Writer(s): Peter Frampton (see lyrics here)

Released: June 1975

First Charted: July 12, 1975

Peak: 6 US, 4 CB, 6 HR, 5 RR, 1 CL, 10 UK, 4 CN, 25 AU, 1 DF (Click for codes to singles charts.)

Sales (in millions): -- US, -- UK, -- world (includes US + UK)

Airplay/Streaming (in millions): -- radio, 40.6 video, 114.98 streaming


Click on award for more details.

About the Song:

Guitarist Peter Frampton was born in England in 1950. He was in a band called the Little Ravens by the age of 12. By 18, he had joined forces with Steve Marriott of the Small Faces to form Humble Pie. That group had a #4 hit in the UK with “Natural Born Bugie” in 1969 and a couple of minor hits in the U.S.

After four solo albums with Humble Pie, Frampton went solo. He released three albums with minimal success. His fourth album, simply called Frampton, reached #32 in the U.S. and went gold. “Show Me the Way” was released in June 1975 as a single, but – like the rest of Frampton’s solo output up to that point – failed to chart.

His fortunes changed, however, with a live recording released the following year. It soared into the top 10 and made the guitarist a superstar. Suddenly, “girls across the globe were gazing upon the bronzed, shirtless blonde that was pinned up on their bedroom walls.” UCR The song was lifted from his 1976 live album Frampton Comes Alive, which spent 10 weeks atop the Billboard album chart on its way toward being the biggest album of the year. It went on to sell more than 8 million copies in the U.S. alone.

“Show Me the Way” is marked by vague lyrics about a protagonist seeking guidance – “a drowning man looking for someone to throw him a life preserver.” SF Frampton kept it vague on purpose, but did admit he’d met someone who gave him confidence and his life “completely changed. All the lyrics in that song are about me and her.” SF

The song was also characterized by its use of a talkbox, “a device hooked up to his guitar that allowed him to create amplified, distorted vocal sounds with his mouth.” SF It created a sensation and many musicians bought or made talkboxes as a result. SF


Related Links:

First posted 7/27/2022.

Saturday, February 14, 1976

Journey’s Look into the Future charted

First posted 10/12/2008; updated 9/11/2020.

Look into the Future


Charted: February 14, 1976

Peak: 100 US, -- UK, -- CN, -- AU

Sales (in millions): -- US, -- UK, 1.0 world (includes US and UK)

Genre: classic rock


Song Title (date of single release, chart peaks) Click for codes to singles charts.

  1. On a Saturday Night (3/76, --)
  2. It’s All Too Much
  3. Anyway
  4. She Makes Me Feel Alright (7/76, --)
  5. You’re on Your Own
  6. Look into the Future
  7. Midnight Dreamer
  8. I’m Gonna Leave You

Total Running Time: 41:50

The Players:

  • Gregg Rolie (vocals, keyboards)
  • Neal Schon (guitar, backing vocals)
  • Ross Valory (bass, backing vocals)
  • Aynsley Dunbar (drums)


3.088 out of 5.00 (average of 12 ratings)

About the Album:

After their first album, guitarist George Tickner left the band, although he has songwriting credits on two of the song’s here (You’re on Your Own and I’m Gonna Leave You). His departure didn’t really change the band. The other four members soldiered on, creating what “is essentially a reprise of their debut.” AMG

That meant they retained “some of the experimental approach and sound” JM of their self-titled first release, especially in the aforementioned “I’m Gonna Leave You” and the title track. JM At just over eight minutes, the latter song was the longest song in Journey’s catalog until 1980 when the song “Destiny,” from Dream After Dream, took the honor, clocking in at almost nine minutes. WK

“The music has a sharper focus and better instrumental sections than its predecessor, [but] it still lacks strong material and is a little too directionless to function as good jazz-rock. Still, it’s a marginal improvement over the debut,” AMG with the band having “toned down the overt progressiveness of their first, self-titled release, in favor of a more focused, commercial approach.” JM

The album features a cover of the Beatles’ song It’s All Too Much. The song was initially written and sung by George Harrison for the 1968 Yellow Submarine film and subsequent soundtrack the following year.

Resources and Related Links:

Saturday, February 7, 1976

Paul Simon “50 Ways to Leave Your Lover” hit #1

50 Ways to Leave Your Lover

Paul Simon

Writer(s): Paul Simon (see lyrics here)

Released: January 2, 1976

First Charted: December 12, 1975

Peak: 13 US, 13 CB, 12 GR, 11 HR, 14 RR, 12 AC, 1 CL, 23 UK, 1 CN, 35 AU, 1 DF (Click for codes to charts.)

Sales (in millions): 1.0 US, 0.2 UK

Airplay/Streaming (in millions): 2.0 radio, 19.65 video, 193.83 streaming


Click on award for more details.

About the Song:

Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel recorded as a duo from 1964 to 1970, finding themselves at the forefront of the folk-rock movement. They “were more playful than they get credit for being, but for a lot of self-impressed ’60s kids…they were poets, and that was a big part of the appeal.” SG When Simon launched his solo career, he “became a kid in a candy store. He tinkered with reggae, with gospel, with Peruvian folk music. He set these bold, vivid, joyous sounds to breezy, nostaliga-drenched lyrics, clearly taking nothing too seriously.” SG

He started writing “50 Ways to Leave Your Lover” “as a sort of kids’ game” SG in response to his failed marriage. His three-year-old son Harper was at his apartment and Simon was teaching him rhyming, coming up with lines like “You just slip out the back, Jack” and “Make a new plan, Stan.” As author Dave Thompson said, “Think of a name and Simon will come up with a ruse ro rhyme with it.” DT It might be the single silliest divorce song ever put on record.” SG

Simon himself called it “a nonsense song” SG but it is “actually a dazzling little piece of storytelling.” SG “Simon presents the whole thing as a dialog, almost a scene from a movie.” SG It “isn’t mired in reflection or self-pity. Instead, it’s a sly exultation, a wink at the whole idea that there can be freedom after marriage.” SG

Musically, the song “is a casually funky track, one that keeps bubbling throughout. The chorus doesn’t explode; it effortlessly slides right in.” SG It also features backup vocals from Patti Austin, Valerie Simpson, and Phoebe Snow – all “prominent musicians in their own right.” SG


  • DMDB encyclopedia entry for Paul Simon
  • FB Fred Bronson (2003). The Billboard Book of Number One Hits (5th edition). Billboard Books: New York, NY. Page 428.
  • SG Stereogum (8/232019). “The Number Ones” by Tom Breihan
  • DT Dave Thompson (2011). 1000 Songs That Rock Your World. Krause Publications: Iola, WI. Page 219.

Related Links:

First posted 10/11/2023.