Sunday, March 15, 2015

2002, Bang Your Head book, Winger

Here's a few pages on Winger
figure since he played w/ Alice Cooper in the 80's.
This is a story I heard before on the rise & fall of the Winger band.

(photo not in "Bang Your Head" book)

Winger
Pgs 325 - 327

Another band that fared well at the end of the 1980s was Winger.
Beau Hill. who previously worked with Rat and also produced War-
rant’s first two albums, would come aboard as Winger’s producer. Hill
had known singer and bassist Kip Winger since the late 1970s. The two
eventually hooked up with guitarist Reb Beach, who had done a lot of
session work, and started recording demos Hill was a friend of Doug
Morris, the head of Atlantic Records, and brought Morris Winger’s
demos; Morris turned them down three times. Recalls Hill, “It had got-
ten so bad that the third time he turned me down he said, “Don’t you
ever bring me that fucking Kip Winger again, ever. I don’t even want to
hear another note.’ ”
The band went back to work and whipped up a revamped demo with
new songs Hill called Morris: “Man, I just got this tape in the mail, and
I’d love to bring it to Atlantic.” Morris agreed to check it out. He liked
the band, but Hill wouldn’t tell him who it was. They closed a deal to
sign the band on a handshake. As Hill was walking out the door, Mor-
ris asked—Well, wait a minute. Aren’t you even going to tell me who I
signed?” Hill said, “Oh yeah—you signed Kip Winger.”

Both Winger’s self-titled debut album, released in 1988, and their
sophomore effort, 1990’s In the Heart of the Young, went platinum.
Winger’s hits included “Headed for a Heartbreak” and their ode to jail-
bait. “Seventeen.” As puerile as some of their music was, Winger was a
group of accomplished players. Kip had trained at Juilliard, Reb Beach
was a top session musician, and drummer Rod Morgenstein had played
with the Dixie Dregs, a jazz/ fusion band. Says Hill, “Those guys deliv- 
ered; they really delivered. They were probably the best live band I’ve
ever heard in my life, because they were the real thing. They could really
play.” Kip was getting as much attention for his looks as his musician-
ship. He was hailed as “Metal’s New Stud” on the cover of RIP Magazine
and posed for Playgirl (the cover promised: “Kip Winger like you’ve
never seen him before.”).
Winger was one ‘80s band that had a particularly harsh downfall in
the ‘90s. The band blamed the demise of their career on the MTV car-
toon Beavis and Butt-head. Said Reb Beach, “I remember sitting on the 
[tour] bus and seeing this new TV show called Beavis and Butt-head 
with a 300-pound, zit-covered kid wearing a Winger T-shirt. Our sales
stopped cold.”
A lot of the music Beavis and Butt-head made fun of was already out- _
dated, so it was hard to really say if these subzero-lQ’d cartoon char- 
acters really had any pull on what was “cool” or what “sucked” and 
wouldn’t make it on MTV, but sometimes you had to wonder. John
Corabi, who replaced Vince Neil in Motley Crue for several years, says
one reason MTV pulled Motley Crue’s “Hooligan’s Holiday” video was 
because the clip moved too fast. Beavis and Butt-head had the same
complaint. The show wasn’t just a big hit with kids who watched 
MTV—the cartoon became a nationwide phenomenon. “These guys are 
the purest form of idiots we’ve been able to isolate.” said David Letter-
man, a fan of the show. “I think they represent a significant portion of 
America.”
Beau Hill felt Winger became an easy target because of Kip’s looks 
and because in an MTV interview, he had come off as smug and full of
himself. He told the interviewer he wanted to “start working on my 
concerto.” Winger also studied ballet and spoke of how he wanted to 
incorporate it into the band’s videos. This was not what the kids wanted
to hear. “The kids want [to hear], ‘The next record’s gonna kick your ass
and rock the walls,’ “ says Hill. “No one wants to watch you ballet-dance
around in a tutu, and nobody gives a shit about your next opus. No kid
wants to hear that shit. They want to hear, ‘I want to go out, find me a
blonde, and get laid.’ Absolutely, Beavis and Butt-head completely ruined
Winger’s career. But I think if Kip hadn’t done all that other stuff, per-
haps Beavis and Butt-head may have picked on someone else.”


excerpt from...

2002
"Bang Your Head" The Rise And Fall Of Heavy Metal
by David Konow










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