Gin Blossoms return home to Tempe for New Year's Eve bash

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By Tami Hoey By Tami Hoey
By Tami Hoey By Tami Hoey

TEMPE, Ariz. -- Tempe's hometown band The Gin Blossoms will likely play all their hits when they arrive on stage for the Circle K New Year's Eve Block Party.

Believe it or not, it's been 22 years since the local band went national with their multi-platinum album "New Miserable Experience."  Now, as we ring in 2015, they're getting a home-town salute, and a permanent place on the street they love. 

The band has now been honored with a plaque on Tempe's Music Walk.

"I'm filled with pride," says lead singer Robin Wilson."Our life's work is being honored by our hometown. It's the kind of thing you literally dream about."

Wilson says the band never expected to reach a worldwide audience.

"We thought we might be able to get a song on the radio, maybe go to SXSW, get Best of Phoenix in the New Times. The world was a smaller place in those days," he says.

Tempe City Councilman Joel Navarro wants Mill Avenue to return to those days, or at least to the energy of them.

"Encourage the local restaurants and bars to engage in the local music like they did in the 80s and 90s," says Navarro.

That's one reason for the free concert series in November, and these new plaques honoring influential artists.

Wilson remembers that music scene vividly.

"It was pretty fun working in record stores around the corner and then going out to see shows after we locked up the doors," he recalls. "Mill Avenue was a lot of fun in those days."

The Gin Blossoms take the stage at 11 p.m. Their opening band is the Pistoleros. You can find Tempe's complete entertainment lineup online.

You can also find out more about Tempe's Music Walk.