We’ve lost another one. Pat DiNizio, the singer and leader of New Jersey’s Smithereens, has died at the age of 62. The official cause of death hasn’t been announced yet.
Although he was looking forward to getting back on the road, Pat was in poor health in recent years that include nerve damage to his hand after a fall in 2015. There were further problems–neck and back issues–that prevented him from performing earlier this year.
The Smithereens were one of the great power-pop bands to emerge in the latter part of the 80s. Although their sound was heavier than most–they were more The Who than Cheap Trick–they still maintained that melodic structure that can be heard in songs like this.
The Smithereens were never a mainstream success, but they had a hardcore following among certain alt-rock types that sustained them through a hiatus in the early part of the 2000s. We played the crap out of them on CFNY and the early days of The Edge.
You might also remember Pat from a SiriusXM show (Was it Little Steven’s Underground Garage Channel?), some work he did for baseball on ESPN and his run for the US Senate for New Jersey as a member of the Reform Party.
More details at Variety.