The first four albums the Smithereens issued fit snugly into my grad school years at Illinois. Especially for You came out in March 86 but “Blood and Roses” didn’t hit my radar until I was in Champaign. Their first major label disk, Blow Up, was released right after Greg and I became roommates for my final year; Greg quickly purchased it and I recall listening to it several times that fall. Their heavy power-pop singles were very much a part of my soundtrack for those years, since I regularly listened to WPGU. They enjoyed a couple of minor Top 40 hits but mega-success eluded them. Even so, they’d managed to stay together and kept recording over the years.
I’m sorry to learn of the death yesterday of Pat DiNizio, their lead singer. I certainly wish his family and friends peace.
My friend Warren has a great appreciation for the Smithereens’ music and had become Facebook friends with Mr. DiNizio some time back. I knew he’d be writing about this as well; here’s his offering. About a year ago, he and I had a brief discussion about our favorite Smithereens tracks. This, the second single from Especially for You, was an easy choice for me.