Pat DiNizio (October 12, 1955 – December 12, 2017) was the founder, principal songwriter, guitarist, and vocalist for the platinum recording artists The Smithereens.
As a youngster, he was inspired by the pop music emanating from his transistor radio in the ‘60s and the hit tunes being written by his musical idols Buddy Holly, The Beatles, and The Beau Brummels among others. He soon began crafting his own 3 minute and 3 chord hook-laden masterpieces. Perseverance paid off for Pat’s band, The Smithereens, with their chart-topping hits appearing on the radio in rapid succession like “Behind the Wall of Sleep”, “Only a Memory” and “A Girl Like You”.
The Smithereens racked up gold and platinum records, and they performed on top-rated television programs such as The Tonight Show, MTV Unplugged and Saturday Night Live as well as on stages all over the world. After 32 years together as a band, The Smithereens continue to tour and record. Their latest album, Smithereens 2011, spawned the hit radio singles “Sorry” and “One Look at You”.
Although Pat DiNizio has never strayed very far from his band of brothers, The Smithereens, he has made a foray into solo side projects. Pat was a program director for XM satellite radio’s “Unsigned Channel”, traveled across the country with his revolutionary living room tours, and ran the grants program for Jim Beam Brands’ “Benefiting Emerging Artists in Music”. Pat has also recorded four critically praised solo albums.
In 2011, Pat brought his “Confessions of a Rock Star” multimedia revue to Las Vegas at The Riviera Hotel. “Confessions of a Rock Star” was the next step in the evolution of The Smithereens’ Pat DiNizio. Part rock raconteur and part power pop pioneer, he continues to expand the boundaries of rock and roll concerts. Pat’s show has grown from its original “one man, one car, one guitar” concept into a compelling example of multimedia performance art.
Pat DiNizio passed away in his hometown of Scotch Plains NJ on December 12, 2017 at the age of 62.