I’ve recently built an 80-inch tall x 55-ft long cinder block wall on one side of my residential property along Country Club Way in Tempe. I call it the Mural at Rock ‘n Roll Heaven – Tempe. When completed, it will have the portraits of seven late musical artists from the Phoenix area painted on it by local professional mural artist, Gina Ribaudo. The portraits will be individually crowdfunded so that those who donate know their contribution is going towards the musical artist of their choice. Our goal amount to fund each portrait is $800. This amount covers the artist’s commission & an engraved granite brick for the base of the portrait. I'm covering the cost of the LED lighting to illuminate the portrait at night and other expenses. The mural is located one block away from a city park along a thoroughfare which is a popular bicycle and pedestrian route.
The first portrait we've crowdfunded is Doug Hopkins: Guitarist, songwriter and founder of the Tempe rock band, the Gin Blossoms. Doug was a creative genius who suffered with bipolar disorder and alcoholism. Immediately following the recording of the band's first album with A&M records in 1992, the label coerced his band mates to kick him out. The band went on tour with a replacement guitarist and Doug went back to Tempe. Doug watched his ex-bandmates become rock stars with his songs and this was eating him up. In 1993, just a few weeks after receiving his first gold record for the song “Hey Jealousy” Doug took his own life. A second song, “Found out about You” also went gold, and his album, “New Miserable Experience” went quadruple platinum after he died. Doug was a Tempe McClintock High School and Arizona State University alumni. All associated costs for his portrait were fully crowdfunded and Gina Ribaudo completed painting it on April 15th. Here is a link to photos of the completed artwork:
The second portrait we've crowdfunded is Chester Bennington. Chester was a singer in Linkin Park, Stone Temple Pilots, Grey Daze & Out of Ashes. Although Chester lived most of his life with the burden of depression, the suicide of his good friend Chris Cornell of Soundgarden in 2017 devastated him. Two months later, Chester took his own life. The artwork for Chester has been fully crowdfunded and Gina Ribaudo has his portrait near completion. Chester attended school at Centennial High, Greenway High and Washington High… all in Phoenix.
It's time to start crowdfunding the third and fourth artistic portraits: Vince Welnick and Glen Buxton.
This GoFundme campaign is for guitarist, Glen Buxton. While attending Cortez High School, Glen formed a band with fellow students Dennis Dunaway, Vincent Furnier, John Tatum and John Speer in 1964. They called themselves the Earwigs. In the years which followed they changed the band name to the Spiders, then the Nazz. In 1968, after making some lineup changes they changed their name to "Alice Cooper" and became one of the greatest bands in rock and roll history.
Glen was the lead guitarist in the band and wrote some of the best known rock licks of all time, including "School's out", "Elected', "I'm Eighteen" as well as many others. Unfortunately, with fame came demons. Glen was drinking heavily and it often interfered with his band obligations.
In 1974, "Alice Cooper" disbanded. Vincent Furnier continued as a solo performer with the the name "Alice Cooper". Buxton was not in the band.
In the years which followed, Glen kept a low profile. He played in the NYC based band "Shrapnel", then moved back to Phoenix and formed the band "Virgin". In the 1990's he moved to Clarion, Iowa and adopted the city as his home. He proudly conquered his demons, returned to playing music, found someone special and they were engaged. Glen died at a time of peace in his life. He is loved by his lasting fans, family and friends.
In 1997, Glen died from Pneumonia at the age of 49. His was buried in Clarion, Iowa. Rock in peace.
Please help fund Glen's portrait on this mural wall in Tempe, Arizona. $10, $20 any amount will get us closer to the goal of $800 needed for the artist's commission, engraved granite brick and night lighting.
Here is an excellent website to find good information on Glen Buxton: http://www.theoriginalglenbuxton.com/about/
- Mark Gordon
- Stephen Power
- Stephen Power
- Eric Slangen
- Robert Cochrane
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