Morris Museum

Groove With Dennis Diken & Bell Sound At The Morris Museum, Morristown, NJ on 8/20@8PM!

(Photo credit: Dennis Diken shot by Donna Diken.)

By Anne M. Raso

Classic rock fanatics–be sure to be at Morris Museum’s Bickford Theatre on Saturday, August 20th at 8:00 PM. Superstar skinpounder Dennis Diken will not only be performing with his group Bell Sound–his side project from The Smithereens–but he will share his memories of growing up in New Jersey “when rock & roll ruled our lives, and I wanted nothing more than to play in a band!” The name of the night’s program is Groovin’: A Musical Journey of Stories and Sounds and it will not disappoint!

In case you don’t know, Carteret, NJ native Diken has not only been the “man on the cans” for The Smithereens for 31 years now–plus started the Beach Boys-influenced Bell Sound–but he is also a noted rock historian and journalist. He has countless compilation album liner notes on legendary artists to his credit, including Louis Prima and The Lovin’ Spoonful.

Diken’s performance with Bell Sound and discussion at the Morris Museum promises to bring out some interesting “special guests”–possibly some who have memorabilia in the Museum’s current exhibition, Jersey Rocks: A History of Rock & Roll In The Garden State. (You can see Diken’s own rock memorabilia as part of The Smithereens’ display there, as well as Felix Cavaliere’s B-3 organ that he used on The Rascals’ “Good Lovin'” and countless other items from the likes of Joey Dee and the Starliters, Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons, Dionne Warwick, the Shirelles, Connie Francis, Lesley Gore, The Angels, The Delicates, the Happenings, the Critters, the Duprees, Ricky Nelson, and the 1910 Fruitgum Company.)

Concert/discussion tickets include pre-performance admission to the Jersey Rocks exhibition. Tickets are $25 ($20 for museum members). For more info, please contact the box office at 973-971-3706 or go to The museum is just a few short miles from the NJ Transit train station in Morristown, so there is easy access from New York City and all of northern and central New Jersey. The Museum’s address is 6 Normandy Heights Road (at the corner of Columbia Turnpike).

Diken promises a fun night for all and we can’t wait to see who sits in with Bell Sound or who turns up in the audience to ask questions.  Pardon the pun, but members of staff will be there “with bells on” and you should be, too! Heck, it’s worth going to see for the world’s greatest rock drummer alone–and we’re not saying that just because our whole staff is from New Jersey! DD pounds the cans like no one else can! (If you can’t make it to the Morris Museum, at least be sure to check out Diken’s work with Bell Sound, Late Music, and The Smithereens’ latest disc, 2011!)