Gin Blossoms Biography
Gin Blossoms are an alternative rock/power pop band that formed in 1987, in Tempe, Arizona, United States, known for their melodic yet melancholic sound. The band originally consisted of Robin Wilson (vocals, guitar), Jesse Valenzuela (guitar, vocals), Doug Hopkins (guitar), Bill Leen (bass), and Phillip Rhodes (drums). Shortly after finishing their debut major album, 'New Miserable Experience', the band fired Hopkins (who was also the band's principal songwriter and penned their hits "Found Out About You" and "Hey Jealousy") and replaced him with Scott Johnston. Released on August 4, 1992, 'New Miserable Experience' proved a sonic contrast to the grunge and aggressive hard rock inspired music in vogue at the time. It became a strong commercial success, reaching the #1 spot on Billboard's Heatseekers chart. Aforementioned hits "Found Out About You" and "Hey Jealousy" were top 40 smashes on Billboard's Hot 100 chart, still getting consistent radio airplay as the years went on. Though blessed with songwriting talent, Hopkins struggled both with addiction and with major depression. Sadly, Hopkins committed suicide in December of 1993. The band continued without him and achieved more major success, their power pop inspired, emotional lyrics becoming a precursor to later adult alternative groups of the late 90s and 00s. Still, they experienced more line-up changes, as Rhodes left the band shortly after their 2002 reunion (returning for a brief period in 2005). Currently the band does not have a permanent drummer. They took their name from a photo of W.C. Fields which bore the caption "W.C. Fields with gin blossoms," referring to the actor's gin-ravaged nose. The band, who were musically weaned on rock artists such as The Byrds and Tom Petty, released three albums and had several hits in the mid-90s before breaking up in 1997. Five years later in 2002, the band reunited, released a DVD, resumed touring, and promised a fourth album. Titled 'Major Lodge Victory', the Gin Blossoms' first album in ten years was released on August 8, 2006 on the Hybrid Recordings label. They have done much well-received touring since then. For example, the group joined Everclear, Sugar Ray, Lit and Marcy Playground on the 'Summerland Tour 2012', a 31-date nationwide tour that began on June 28, 2012, in Saratoga, California, and ended on August 11, 2012, in Laughlin, Nevada. The band later released 'No Chocolate Cake' on September 28, 2010; and 'Mixed Reality' on June 15, 2018.