Wildhearts mainman critical over manager who’s also involved in his own band’s dealings – he’ll play last show next week

Michael Monroe band

Moving on: Ginger, left, with the Monroe band

Ginger has quit the Michael Monroe band, and he’ll play his last show with them next weekend.

The Wildhearts mainman, who plays guitar for the former Hanoi Rocks singer, says one of the reasons for his move is lack of faith in manager Virpi Immonen for his departure – but she also represents his own outfit.

Ginger comments: “I left for a lot of reasons, mainly the management. I didn’t agree with the management of the band, but I didn’t have enough of a position to change anything.

“Choosing one thing I didn’t like about management policy would be like choosing one hair on a dog’s back. That dog has a very hairy back.”

“It was basically me or the manager – and Michael chose the manager.”

Immonen represents the interests of Monroe, the Wildhearts, Mad Juana and the von Hertzen Brothers via her Helsinki-based company Backstage Alliance, a company which also provides label and agency services.

She says: “It’s pointless to stir up a sensation about this because there isn’t any.”

But Ginger counters: “It was hard to leave something I’d been involved in for 18 months, as you’d imagine. Virpi didn’t write the lyrics and music, so I imagine it wasn’t difficult for her.

“Although she might be brilliant in other aspects of the music business she doesn’t understand band management. It involves as much psychology as business smarts. You need to be on top of everything, give twelve projections and have great imagination.”

He says he wasn’t reliant on the Monroe gig to pay his wages and that his solo shows pay him more, and accepts he wasn’t entitled to have a bigger say in the band’s direction: “Michael and Sami Yaffa formed the band. I was aware of my position from the beginning, but coming from a position as a band leader it was an increasingly difficult situation for me.”

He’ll walk away after Monroe’s June 17 appearance at the Provinssirock festival in Finland. Monroe will play his first show with Ginger’s replacement on June 26, supporting the Foo Fighters in Helsinki.

Ginger, who had to persuade Monroe to let him join the band when it formed in 2010, expressed his dissatisfaction with his role as far back as January, saying: “I really miss talking to the audience. Michael doesn’t like to do that so much, but I find myself frustrated at not knowing who I’m playing to.”

The Wildhearts are on semi-permanent hiatus until bassist Scott Sorry, who had to bow out for personal reasons, feels able to return. Ginger has said: “Replacing Scott is not an option. Without him there won’t be any Wildhearts. When he decides he wants to come back we’ll do more work. I’m not saying we will and I’m not saying we won’t.”

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