The Smithereens are a rock band from Carteret, New Jersey, The group formed in 1980 with members Pat DiNizio(vocals & guitar), Jim Babjak (guitar & vocals), Mike Mesaros (bass guitar & vocals), and Dennis Diken (drums & percussion). This lineup continued until 2006, when Mesaros left the band and Severo Jornacion took over on bass guitar. The Smithereens have collaborated with numerous musicians, both in the studio (Suzanne Vega and Belinda Carlisle) and live (Graham Parker and The Kinks). The band's name comes from a Yosemite Sam catchphrase, "Varmint, I'm a-gonna blow you to smithereens!".
Known for writing and playing catchy 1960s-influenced power pop that inspired countless alternative rockers including Kurt Cobain while writing Nevermind, The Smithereens gained popularity with “11” the album the spawned college campus favorites “A Girl Like You”, “Blood and Roses” & “Blue Period”. Along with a basic Eastern-coast roots-rock sound the Smithereens deployed a uniquely retro obsession with the late British Mod sound that lent its music substance to the band.
Two years ago the Smithereens released “2011” their first album of new material in 12 years. Produced by Don Dixon (who helmed Especially For You, the group’s breakout debut), Smithereens2011 features 13 new tracks and finds the seminal New Jersey rockers picking up right where they left off: with irresistibly catchy hooks and rapturously fuzzed-out guitars. Eschewing extensive pre-production, the band cut a raw and electric album in the best tradition of Cheap Trick or Big Star that just begs you to roll down the windows and crank up the volume.
Peter Case is an American singer-songwriter and guitarist. His career is wide- ranging, including new wave music to folk rock to solo acoustic performance. A veteran of several rock bands and the local bar scene as a teenager, Case dropped out of high school when he was fifteen (he would later earn a GED), and after several years of traveling arrived in 1973 in San Francisco, where he performed as a street musician. In 1976, he teamed up with Jack Lee and Paul Collins in to form the early new wave band The Nerves in San Francisco. The group's 1976 single, "Hanging on the Telephone", was later recorded by Blondie. When the Nerves disbanded, Case moved to Los Angeles and formed the pop-rock band The Plimsouls in 1980. The Plimsouls found a measure of success when their songs "A Million Miles Away. Case struck out on his own with a self-titled album released in 1986 on Geffen Records. One of the songs on the album, "Old Blue Car", was nominated for a Grammy award. In 1989, Case released a second solo disc, while not a major commercial success, the album was a favorite of critics and other musicians: Bruce Springsteen told Rolling Stone magazine that he was listening to Peter Case more than anyone else that year. Case continues to tour as a solo artist and periodically reunites with former band members paying tribute to their groups The Nerves, The Breakaways, The Beat and The Plimsouls http://laparks.org/pershingsquare/aug-3.html
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