Zakk Wylde is not the only guitarist Pantera is considering for the new lineup, says the band’s former producer

Panther announces a tour with Zak Wylde and Charlie Benante was one of the biggest moments in the metal world during 2022, and they played a handful of shows in December to top off the year. However, one of the band’s producers has revealed that Wylde was not the only guitarist considered for the role and explained why he was chosen for it.

Sterling Winfield worked with Pantera on some of their later albums and also produced work by the members’ post-Pantera groups Damage plan and Hell yes. During an interview with 89.3 KNON FM, the producer went into some detail about the dynamics of the current lineup, adding that he was present during their portion of their rehearsal in New Orleans, La. just before the trip starts.

“When I was in New Orleans, I knew it was going to be huge because I got to see how serious they take this, how they take this. Phil [Anselmo] and Rex [Brown] are different people now, they are not the same people from 20-something years ago. You mature, you grow up, you own your mistakes, you move on in your life and you hope to make a better path for yourself. And that’s exactly what I’m seeing here,” Winfield said.

The producer reiterated that Brown, Anselmo, Wylde and Benante never intended the tour to be called a reunion – in their eyes, it was always intended as a tribute to Dimebag Darrell, Vinnie Paul and the music they created together. He also added that Wylde and Benante were well suited to the roles they took on in honor of their fallen friends.

“They’re not trying to be Dime and Vinnie, guys. They’re not trying to be. That would be disrespectful. But they’re being themselves and they’re having fun,” he continued.

“Now, there were some other guitar people that were brought up. I’ll just say this — that it wouldn’t have been a good fit, and frankly, they wouldn’t have been able to pull it off,” Winfield admitted. “But it always kept circling back to Zakk… Because he knew Dime better than most other guitar players on the planet knew him. Is it Dimebag Darrell’s exact notes and riffs and everything? No. It’s Zakk Wylde , you idiots. It’s Zakk.”

Listen to the interview below.

The producer did not mention which other guitarists had been considered for the role. However, a guitarist recently revealed it Brown once suggested that he audition for the band if they were ever to play again – Alter Bridge‘s Mark Tremonti.

“A number of years ago I was talking to Rex at Download Festival and he was talking about a possible Pantera reunion. He looked at me and said, ‘You’ve got to put your name in the hat,’ and I was like, ‘No, man!’ You have to be a certain type of personality to take on that role,” Tremonti said.

Right now, Pantera’s next scheduled performance is set for May 20 at Welcome to Rockville festival in Daytona Beach, Fla. See the rest of the dates and get tickets here.

Zakk Wylde is not the only guitarist Pantera is considering for the new lineup, says the band’s former producer

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