Smithereens leader and wall of sleep

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February 13, 2018 by jacklovelace

Pat Dinizio died in December.

That I just found out about it tells you how off the famous charts he was.

Yet he was the lead singer and songwriter for The Smithereens, who created

some really fine pop music over the years, but mostly years ago. Blood and Roses is with me at all times.

During one of our family visits to New York I saw The Smithereens were playing

a cruise around Manhattan. We went. The boat was small, Dinizio was big and while the music conditions weren’t great, it was fun to hear him belt out Smithereen songs.

After that, we were in Las Vegas and I saw he was doing a solo show.

It turned out to be a small little theater in a casino and there couldn’t have been

more than 30 people. Pretty bad.

(It also was my first experience with cell phone distraction. We were in the second row, a guy in the first row was obviously going to hold his camera up to record the show. I

politely, for me, said gently “that really is distracting.”. Believe it or not, he said “really?’, and move a few rows back. Try and repeat that experience)

Dinizio was not in great physical shape but he could play and sing and he told stories and he performed some of his favorite songs, Smithereens or otherwise. I loved it,

clapping loudly to try and compensate for the crowd size and calm.

When he wrapped things up he had obviously spotted my enthusiasm and attention to his storytelling. He called me up and handed me his guitar pick. Like the good groupie, I framed it at home.

Sometimes it really doesn’t matter how famous someone is (how many people get a chill at the opening of his song Wall of Sleep that begins “She had hair like Jeannie Shrimpton back in 1965”)

All that matters is how much you appreciated them.


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