December 29 [12:00 EDT] -- Former Gin Blossoms singer Robin Wilson debuted his new band, The Pharaohs, Christmas Day in his hometown of Tempe, Arizona.
The band had a low-key unveiling opening for the Refreshments at a club called Gibson's. The Pharaohs include Gin Blossoms drummer Phillip Rhodes as well as a one-time Gin Blossom, Dan Henzerling (who went on to join Grievous Angels) on guitar along with Brian Griffith (from Dead Hot Workshop) on bass, both old friends of Wilson's.Wilson has confirmed to the media, friends and fans that the Gin Blossoms are no more. Rumors had been circulating since the band's last live performance a year ago last New Years Eve when they played their last album, "Congratulations, I'm Sorry," in its entirety. Local press had been referring to the players for months as 'former' members of the Gin Blossoms. Record company officials had alluded to the split but declined to comment to MTV citing contracts with individual members. "When the
band regroups or they come up with something solid individually to take it's place, we'll issue a statement on the status of the Gin Blossoms," said one spokesperson.Blossoms guitarists Jesse Valenzuela and Scott Johnson have been playing together much of the past year as The Low Watts. Valenzuela is handling the lead vocals and guitar. The group also includes local bassist Darryl Icard and drummer Winston Watson. Gin Blossoms' bassist Leen is said to be retiring from the music business. The split appears amicable. "Robin wants to pursue something different, so, giving him his own space and time to do whatever he wants, I'm not holding my breath to make another record," Valenzuela told the Arizona paper Get Out last July. "If somebody wants to go knock around by himself and play some music, he should have the blessing of all the other guys in the band. We've known each other for so long, it would just be silly to be nasty with one another." Both bands are expected to
have records out next year.