DOES KIP WINGER THINK GUITARIST REB BEACH IS UNDERRATED?
Greg Prato for Ultimate Guitar spoke with Winger frontman Kip Winger. Portions of part two, of the interview, appear below, read part one, here.
Ultimate Guitar: Let’s discuss the new box set. How did the idea come about?
Kip Winger: A very well-known manager who’s a good friend of mine – by the name of Larry Mazer – suggested that I do a box set. It hadn’t even dawned on me, actually. And we thought it was a good idea. So, I got together with the label and talked about how we would put it together. And it’s the first and only remaster that I had anything to do with. Usually, they just put it out there and get whoever to master the record. And I never get approval, basically.
So, I was actually able to recruit the original mastering engineer, Ted Jensen…to do these. And we got the masters and dug into it. And I went into storage to get some old photos, old lyrics, old artwork, and a lot of stuff people haven’t seen before. And so it’s really got my stamp on it as my presentation of a box set.
Ultimate Guitar: Which Winger tracks are you most proud of from the box set?
Kip Winger: It’s like your children. I mean, Headed for Heartbreak is a standout for me. Madalaine. Certainly most of the tracks off the Pull record, which was a very significant record for us. I never listen to my music, so going down and listening to it all was really like a trip down memory lane. Brought back a lot of memories. So… Blind Revolution Mad [and] Who’s the One.
Ultimate Guitar: Let’s talk about Reb Beach‘s guitar playing – do you consider him an underrated guitarist?
Kip Winger: Yeah, I guess so. I mean, he never seems to get the love from the guitar community. But it’s very ironic – he was in Alice Cooper, Night Ranger, Dokken, Whitesnake. He’s the longest-surviving guitar player of Whitesnake – 18 years… And certainly with us, his signature riffs and sound, I mean, he’s a very unique sounding guitarist. We had a new album come out on May 5th, Winger Seven, and there’s a track called It All Comes Back Around. If you listen to the solo at the end of that song, there’s nothing like it. It’s kind of the sequel to Headed for a Heartbreak.
It’s weird, we get a lot of young guitar players that come to see Reb because he is such a legendary player, but he doesn’t get a lot of coverage. So, I guess I would say he’s underrated…
Ultimate Guitar: Before, you mentioned that there is a fourth disc as part of the box set, which is all demos. Are there any demos that you actually prefer the demo version over what the finished studio version became?
Kip Winger: Certain elements. I think Headed for a Heartbreak is one where Reb played the solo and that was really when we captured the essence of the solo. And recreating those things became more difficult. The Down Incognito demo had a certain thing to it – although I think we nailed the album version. I would, I would say Headed for a Heartbreak probably would be the standout one. The Rainbow in the Rose demo, I prefer some of the things on the demo. The background vocals on Madalaine on the demo were cooler. So, it’s a really interesting to relive that.
This is the exact reason that I don’t do demos – and I haven’t done demos since after the third record. Because ‘demo-it is’ and capturing the demo, it’s a thing that you can’t even try – because when you record a song with its fresh energy, that’s really when it’s kind of piping down from the universe and that’s when it’s really at its peak…
Ultimate Guitar: Are there any other projects you’re working on or anything coming up that you’d like to discuss?
Kip Winger: We put out a new [Winger] record out last May and we’re touring a lot for it. We did a thing with [former Cinderella frontman] Tom Keifer last summer. We went to Japan. We’re doing a lot of gigs coming up. So at WingerTheBand.com, you can find out all about that. And I’m finishing a violin concerto for the Nashville Symphony. That’s consuming all my time right now. And that album should be out in 2025. And there’s plenty more to come – because I’m just getting started.
Read more at Ultimate Guitar.