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Gin Blossoms

By blending contemporary power pop with elements of the post-grunge era, Gin Blossoms briefly emerged as torchbearers of the lighter side of alternative rock. Bassist Bill Leen and guitarist Doug Hopkins formed the band in 1987 in Tempe, AZ, rounding out the initial lineup with vocalist Jesse Valenzuela, guitarist Richard Taylor, and drummer Chris McCann. The following year saw several personnel shifts as the band struggled to solidify -- McCann was replaced by Dan Henzerling (and, shortly thereafter, Phillip Rhodes), while Taylor was fired and replaced by guitarist Robin Wilson. Wilson and Valenzuela subsequently switched roles, and the band recorded a self-released album, Dusted, in 1989. A&M signed them the following year.

After an impressive debut EP, 1991's Up & Crumbling, the Gin Blossoms rocketed out of the college pop charts and into the mainstream with their 1993 hit single "Hey Jealousy." Combining the ringing guitar hooks of the Byrds and R.E.M. with a solid, rootsy drive, the band's breakthrough full-length album, New Miserable Experience (which had actually been released the previous year), was filled with songs equally as strong as "Hey Jealousy," including the second hit single, "Found Out About You." New Miserable Experience and its assorted singles dominated radio and MTV for the following year -- "Hey Jealousy" and "Found Out About You," both penned by Hopkins, remained in heavy radio rotation nearly a year after their initial release -- and such success pushed the sales of their debut album to over one million copies.

All was not well within the group's ranks, however. Hopkins' battle with alcoholism and depression had taken its toll on the band during the sessions for New Miserable Experience, and he was fired shortly after the record's release, with guitarist Scott Johnson taking his place. Speculation abounded as to whether the band would be able to maintain its success without Hopkins' melancholy songwriting voice. Tragically, on December 5, 1993, Hopkins shot and killed himself, even as the songs he had written were blanketing the airwaves.

In the summer of 1995, the Gin Blossoms contributed "'Till I Hear It from You," a song they co-wrote with Marshall Crenshaw, to the soundtrack of the film Empire Records. "'Till I Hear It from You" became a major radio hit, but was never released as an official single until it was featured as the B-side of "Follow You Down," the first single from the group's second album, Congratulations...I'm Sorry. Upon its release in February of 1996, Congratulations...I'm Sorry charted well, but within six months, it had disappeared from the charts. Following the supporting tour, the Gin Blossoms disbanded in 1997.

Strangely enough, the group reunited (sans Rhodes) for a 2001 New Year's Eve concert. The Gin Blossoms hit the road several months later for a summer tour, drumming up renewed interest with the release of Dusted -- originally issued in 1989 as the band's debut cassette tape -- as well as a live DVD, Just South of Nowhere. Four years later, the band unveiled its first batch of new material since the mid-'90s. Major Lodge Victory proved to be sonically similar to the band's earlier efforts, and the album earned warm critical reviews. Signing with 429 Records, the Blossoms released another collection of new material, No Chocolate Cake, in 2010. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine, Rovi
full bio

Selected Discography

Comments

Love GIN BLOSSOM !!!!
AND THE 90S MUSIC WILL LIVE ON!!!
University and Hardy! Walking distance to Chuy's on Mill Ave before they hit the LimeLight
Takes me back to when life was fun
Saw them this past Saturday 12/06/14 and they are still absolutely incredible!
lrbmortgage
Asome!!!!!!! ! ! ! ! !
How can you follow? You won't know where I am.
Saw them 10/18/14 in Folsom, CA. Awesome show! Played all their big hits. I think their songs and lyrics are the best of any band ever, except maybe the Beatles. By far my favorite group from the early 90's - on!!!
What happened to the lyrics?
Arizona bands and music are the BEST! Fleetwood mac, Gin Blossoms, and there are some canadians with an AZ sound : BareNakedLad i e s , and Alanis Morissette (guitar instrumental s with harmonica accents).
Love this song, brings back memories.
Love Gin Blossoms songs!!! :)
beran.joseph
@llanger2003 Perhaps you are thinking of Long Way Down which was a Goo Goo Dolls song from around the same time, I believe on their A Boy Named Goo album?
tim27164
@llanger2003 , No. Definitely not. Follow you down was by the Gin Blossoms on their CD, Congratulati o n s . . . I'm Sorry.
Follow You Down was by the Goo Goo Dolls, right? Regarding the bio...
The soundtrack to the 90's!
Love GB!! R.I.P. Doug Hopkins.
meaghanmonag h a n 9 6 3
Dont read this because it actually works. You will get kissed on the nearedt possiable friday by the love of your life. Tomorrow will be the best day of your life. however if you do not post this comment to at least 3 songs you will doe in 2days. Now you've started reading this so dont stop. This is so scary; now put this on 5 songs in at least 143 minutes when if done press f6 and you lovers name will appear on the screen this is scary cuz it actually works
Why???Such a great voice and song writing. Depression and booze hit so many. Lost one of my own brothers to it. Wish we could understand the human brain better, turn off or at least greatly minimize the part that causes feelings of helplessness and hopeless negativity. Really good band, just sad in the end. People who suffer depression are healed in Heaven, not to get religious and crap, but I believe that.
To bad that the guy who wrote these songs killed himself
I Also agree with all of The Gin-Blossom' s fans. An awesome band that was shortlived. I First started listening to them in the early 90s when I joined The U.S. Navy; when I was stationed in NSRF Sasebo Japan. Man those were some memorable times. I Still listen to them, and I will never get tired from listrning to this awesome band. Thanks Gin-Blossoms for all your contribution s to the music industry.
When I was a little kid, I used to think the song was called Hey Chelsea, and that it was about an ex named Chelsea. I was proven wrong when I sung this song at the top of my lungs in the car, on my way to my dad's house. He was like, Sweetheart, there's no 'Chelsea.'
Right On Sandyernst2! Im's 62 years old and the first time I hear Found Out About You I turned around in the car and asked my Daughter - WHO IS THAT? You know who it was? Doug Hopkins and the Gin Blossoms. He was the heart and soul of the Group --- RIP Honey, you went way too soon and way to young and in the process deprived us of your incredible talent. Who the f**k fires a musician for a drinking/dru g problem anyhow? He should have come up in the 60s and he'd still be performing.
New Miserable Experience is one of the 10 albums I would need to have with me if I was stuck on a desert island.
One of my all time favorite albums. New Miserable Experience. Wore it out.
I love the Gin Blossoms! Such good memories accompany this album.
db6394
I was there,Phoeni x in the 80s and 90s.,
I agree K
Great memories about me and my dad singing this song on the way to elementary school in the old Silverado. Wow.
It would have been nice to have been at a bar while these guys were playing. :(
Holy 1999 Batman!! Flashbacks of high school, senior year.
PEACE, LOVE, AND HAVE FUN
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One of my all-time favorite bands, just completely catchy. I was lucky enough that Robin tossed me a tambourine during a concert in Fargo a few years ago...and didn't want it back. Great keepsake that I'll never forget.
Gin Blossoms and Tonic.
Great tune
Everybody happy happy happy when they're playin!
grew up on this album, these guys remind me of much simpler days its awesome finding a group that you can listen to for so long
You ever wonder why The Gin Blossoms were a one album band? Because they kicked out the co-founder and principle songwriter due to a drinking problem. The real problem was it was a group with no talent but thought they could coast on the success of Doug Hopkins songwriting forever. Well the public may not know the ugly truth, but they know what they liked and it was the talent and guitar work of Doug. RIP, bro.
This freaked me out This isn't fake. Apparently, if you copy and paste this on ten comments in the next ten minutes, you will have the best day of your life tomorrow. You will either get kissed or asked out, if you break this chain you will see a little dead girl in your room tonight. In the next 53 minutes someone will say I love you or I'm sorry This freaked me out This isn't fake.
A great power pop sound
Gin Blossoms reunited for New Years Eve 2000 (not 2001)....in Phoenix...I was there!
Hey guys can you follow me because im trying to get 1000 followers by the end of April and that is on my birthday and i will follow you back if you follow me! Thank you!
I love dancing!
Definitely a band with some classics.
leslijones17
Never got to see them. One of my absolute Favs of the'90s.
coolmusiczon e _ 3 3
Awesome band
GDMN!! I love this song they only had one album worth listening to but how many have an album like this that was astounding from start to finish?!
excellent 90's band
coolmusiczon e _ 3 3
I love gin blossoms
"I don't wanna take advice from fools, I just figure everything is cool until I hear it from you". A co-written gem.
Who writes these Bios? Mitt Romney's research team? The Gin Blossoms struggled to get signed, then with recording a debut album. NME was just that, a miserable experience, right until it took off like a rocket catapulting the band to fame without its leat guitarist and visionary. RIP Otis.
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