Michael Monroe was surprised Wildheart mainman wanted to join band – but they’ve remained friends and collaborators despite his departure

Michael Monroe and GInger

Still friends: Monroe and Ginger

Michael Monroe wasn’t astonished when Ginger said he wanted to leave his band – he’d been more surprised when the Wildhearts mainman asked to join it.

The former Hanoi Rocks singer tied up with Ginger to write songs for Sensory Overdrive, but didn’t expect it to go any further.

Monroe tells Sleaz Roxx: “I was very surprised when he joined. He’s been the frontman in the past, and here he was in a supporting role. I asked him point-blank, ‘Are you going to be cool being the guitarist in this band?’ Ginger said, ‘Oh, yeah.’ I talked it over with bass player Sami Yaffa and he agreed it would be cool to have him.

“A few months ago he started asking about the length of the touring cycle. I said I wanted to tour for a year. That didn’t work for Ginger – but I asked him to hold on until we found a replacement.

“Basically he was at a point where he didn’t want to tour as much. He has a four-year-old at home and he wants to spend quality time with his kid and pursue his solo career. Between his family, solo career and doing this, it was too much.”

But Monroe confirms the two are still friends. “We’ll be writing together in the future,” he says. “Originally he was just going to help me write the record, but he joined the band. Now it looks like he’ll just help write in the future. He’s a fantastic songwriter.”

Backyard Babies axeman Dregen has replaced Ginger and Monroe reports: “He’s more of a punk player, so it takes him a little longer to learn the parts. We just needed to practice a little more than with Ginger, but we’ll be just fine.

“We’re not going to have him sound like Ginger – he has his own style. Dregen is a wild man on stage. People who saw us before didn’t think things could get more energetic; but with Dregen we have.”

Related stories: