Two days after the Count Basie Theatre announced that the Red Bank venue would unveil a new ‘club’ format with a January 13 concert by the Smithereens, the band’s lead singer has died, according to a Tuesday post on the band’s website.
The other three founding members of the New Jersey-based rock band mourned the death of co-founder Pat DiNizio with the post early Wednesday morning on the Smithereens’ Facebook page:
Today we mourn the loss of our friend, brother and bandmate Pat DiNizio.
Pat had the magic touch. He channeled the essence of joy and heartbreak into hook-laden three minute pop songs, infused with a lifelong passion for rock & roll.
Our journey with Pat was long, storied and a hell of a lot of fun. We grew up together. Little did we know that we wouldn’t grow old together.
Goodbye Pat. Seems like yesterday.
No cause of death was announced. In a Saturday post on the Facebook page, DiNizio, 62, told fans that he was “receiving very good care and several physical therapy sessions” at his home in Scotch Plains for unspecified ailments. According to news reports, the Smithereens canceled three tour dates earlier this autumn after DiNizio was injured in a fall at home in September.
The Basie announced on Monday that it would debut a ‘club’ format, with a dance floor built over seats, with a January 13 show by the Smithereens and Scandal, featuring singer Patty Smyth. Tickets for the concert, which was to have been hosted by guitarist and Basie board member Steven Van Zandt, were scheduled to go on sale Friday.
In a statement issued Wednesday morning, the theater said it “will update fans and the media on the particulars of this event as information warrants.”