Founded in New Jersey in 1980, The Smithereens have been creating electrifying, original rock’n’rollfor41 years. Jim Babjak (guitar,) Dennis Diken (drums,) and Mike Mesaros (bass) grew up together inCarteret and lead singer, the late Pat DiNizio, hailed from Scotch Plains.The Smithereens’ take noprisoners sound, reflecting their Garden State roots,has resonated with fans worldwide over the courseof 17 albums and 2500+ live shows. Studio albums include Especially for You, Green Thoughts, 11, ADate with The Smithereens, and 2011. Among their biggest hits are the rock radio staples “Blood andRoses,” “Only a Memory,” “Behind the Wall of Sleep,” and “A Girl Like You.” The Smithereens’ mostrecent album,COVERS, features 22 of the bands favorite songs first recorded by other artists.
The band paid its dues in clubs all over the NJ/NYC area from Kenny’s Castaways in Greenwich Villageto the Court Tavern and Stone Pony in NJ. As The Smithereens’ fame escalated, they werein heavyrotation on MTV and appeared on The Tonight Show, Conan O’Brien, and Saturday Night Live. They’vesince performed on stages coast to coast from the Greek Theatre in Los Angeles to the MeadowlandsArena in NJ to Radio City Music Hall in Manhattan, and internationally from Europe to Australia. Tourmates have included Tom Petty, Squeeze, The Pretenders, Lou Reed, and the Ramones,among others.
They’ve also inspired and influenced generations of musicians, including the late Kurt Cobain, whocounted The Smithereens as a major influence on Nirvana.
With the 2017 passing of Pat DiNizio, the survivingbandmembersdecided to persevere and carry ontheir shared musical legacy. Using rotating guest vocalists, including longtime friend Marshall Crenshawand Robin Wilson of the Gin Blossoms, something no other band has done, they continue to entertainand rock fans all over the U.S. and the world.
In 2019, The Smithereens–Jim Babjak, Dennis Diken, Mike Mesaros, and the late Pat DiNizio-werehonored by their home state and were inducted into the New Jersey Hall of Fame, Class of 2018, in the“Performing Arts” category. Previously, Babjak and Diken were inducted into the White Castle Hall ofFame for The Smithereens’ rendition of the Jim Babjak/Bob Banta composition “White Castle Blues.
”The Smithereens are currently featured in the Grammy Museum’s “New Jersey Legends” exhibit, haveresumed touring, and have new albums in the works, to be released in 2021 and 2022. Moving forwardand against all odds, The Smithereens reached a major milestone in 2021 as they celebrated their 41stanniversary and 41st continuous year as a band!