Jersey Shore Band Spotlight: The Drunken Clams
Ahhh, The Drunken Clams Band, a staple in the Jersey Shore bar band scene. Lucky me, not only did I have an opportunity to sit down with founding member and band drummer, Keith Burns, but he's also my guy!
Keith and Pat Troccoli (guitar) have been playing music together since they met in high school. They started in north Jersey, originally called Wildcard, with members Michael Mallack (vocals) and Randy Ward (bass). Wildcard later broke up, only because some of the guys wanted to pursue other things. Keith and Pat decided to head south and play around the Jersey shore, where they met up with Antney 'Boom' Ruzzano on vocals and played with different bands. The friends decided to start their own band, and called themselves the Drunken Clams. After a rehearsal, the 3 were sitting at a bar in Bayville and on the menu, of course, Tony with his huge sense of humor, thought drunken clams would be a hilarious name for a band...the name stuck. They had two bass players over the years, Jeff Hradkowsky, later replaced by Darryl Lepree. They played together for years until 'Boom' passed away suddenly at the young age of 49 in April 2018; the band took that summer off.
Keith and Pat decided to move forward in Tony's memory and called up their old friends, Michael and Randy, their former Wildcard band mates, and continue with The Drunken Clams. Knowing he had huge shoes to fill, Michael did just that, with a lot of grace and humility. With the four friends back together again, the band picked up right where they left off and have been busy ever since. Their fans and followers have become like a second family, supporting them through tragedy and rebirth.
They've been playing together ever since, rockin' local Jersey shore bars and clubs. They perform everything from Black Sabbath to John Denver, 311, Blink 182, The Eagles and my favorite, Van Halen.
Check them out at www.drunkenclams.com, on Facebook at Drunken Clams Rock or meet me at Calloway's in Eagleswood on November 21st and later that evening at the Waterfront in Forked River.