NEPA Scene Staff

Glam metal hitmakers Winger and FireHouse play at Penn’s Peak in Jim Thorpe on March 25

Glam metal hitmakers Winger and FireHouse play at Penn’s Peak in Jim Thorpe on March 25
Decrease Font Size Increase Font Size Text Size Print This Page

From a press release:

It was announced today that glam metal bands Winger and FireHouse, known for platinum hits in the late 1980s and early ’90s, will perform at Penn’s Peak in Jim Thorpe on Friday, March 25.

Doors at Penn’s Peak (325 Maury Rd., Jim Thorpe) open at 7 p.m., and the music starts at 8 p.m.

Tickets, which are $34 in advance or $39 the day of the show, go on sale next Wednesday, Jan. 12 at 10 a.m. via, the Penn’s Peak box office, and at Roadies Restaurant and Bar (325 Maury Rd., Jim Thorpe). Box office and Roadies Restaurant ticket sales are walk-up only; no phone orders.

“Winger’s musical pedigree was practically unmatched in ’80s metal,” Rolling Stone magazine wrote. “The band crafted a debut album that combined hard-pop melodies with plenty of proggy, technically dazzling instrumental work.”

Formed in 1987, Winger soared to immediate success with their 1988 self-titled album. It spawned the hit singles “Seventeen” and “Headed for a Heartbreak” and achieved platinum sales status. “Winger” also stayed on the Billboard Top 200 chart for over 60 weeks, where it peaked at No. 21.

Their next album, “In the Heart of the Young,” also achieved platinum status and contained the singles “Can’t Get Enuff” and “Miles Away.” The change in the musical climate of the mid-’90s, compounded with unprovoked ridicule on MTV’s popular animated comedy show “Beavis and Butt-Head,” led the band to go on hiatus in 1994 following the release of their critically acclaimed third album “Pull.” In 2001, the group reunited and hasn’t looked back since.

Winger continues to make a name for themselves with relentless touring and recent studio albums “IV,” “Karma,” and their latest, “Better Days Comin’.” Released in 2014 via Frontiers Records, “Better Days Comin’” shows the band on top of their game, winning back fans and critics alike because of their exceptional musicianship, songwriting, and Kip Winger’s powerful vocals.

From the opening riff of album opener “Midnight Driver of a Love Machine” to the final outro lick of “Out of This World,” it is clear that one of the most misunderstood rock bands to come out of the late ’80s is back and better than ever. Hard-rocking songs like “Queen Babylon,” adrenaline-fueled rocker “Rat Race,” the inspired progressive rock of “Tin Soldier,” and touching ballad “Ever Wonder” display the band’s diversity while always centering on great songs. Kerrang magazine described it as “a hard-hitting album. … Winger’s blood is still pumping… so are the tunes.”

Comprised of original members Kip Winger on vocals/bass, Reb Beach on guitar, and Rod Morgenstein on drums, plus longtime guitarist John Roth, Winger’s latest album and tour schedule showcases the group firing on all cylinders. This resurgence in popularity has seen them break back into Billboard’s Top 100 and, in 2016, Grammy nominee Kip Winger hit No. 1 on Billboard and iTunes charts with his debut classical music album “Conversations with Nijinsky” with the San Francisco Ballet Orchestra and conductor Martin West. The band is currently working on their next album.

“This is a band who refuse to merely glide on past glories,” Classic Rock magazine said. “Winger push their own boundaries.”

FireHouse has been rockin’ for over three decades. Their music has taken them all over the world and has produced gold, platinum, and multi-platinum records in the United States and countries abroad.

In 1990, their debut album, entitled “FireHouse,” was released. The first single, “Shake & Tumble,” had impressive radio success. Then the band released “Don’t Treat Me Bad,” which became their first Top 10 hit. This was followed by “Love of a Lifetime,” which also entered the Top 10, reaching the No. 3 spot on the U.S. charts. This string of hits vaulted their first album to double platinum status in the United States, also going gold in Canada, Japan, and Singapore. At the 1991 American Music Awards, FireHouse found themselves accepting the award for Best New Hard Rock/Metal Band, chosen over Nirvana and Alice in Chains.

The band’s second album, “Hold Your Fire,” was released in 1992. It produced the hits “Reach for the Sky” and “Sleeping with You.” Another Top 10 hit, “When I Look into Your Eyes,” peaked on the U.S. charts at No. 5. This album earned the band two more gold albums and over one million sales worldwide.

In 1995, FireHouse released their third album on Epic, simply titled “3.” Once again, FireHouse produced another Top 40 hit in the U.S. with “I Live My Life for You.” It was with this album that FireHouse made their first trip to Southeast Asia for a promotional tour. Earlier American hits like “Don’t Treat Me Bad,” “Love of a Lifetime,” and “When I Look into Your Eyes” had climbed the charts in Asia. “Here for You,” the second single from “3,” had also become a hit. Then they continued their promotional tour in South American countries such as Brazil and Argentina.

Their fourth album, “Good Acoustics,” was released in 1996 and quickly went gold in Malaysia, Thailand, and the Philippines. “Good Acoustics” contains unplugged versions of the group’s greatest hits, as well as four new songs. This album produced foreign hits such as “In Your Perfect World,” “Love Don’t Care,” and “You Are My Religion.” The band returned to Southeast Asia for another promotional tour at the end of 1996. In February of 1997, FireHouse embarked on their first full concert tour of Southeast Asia, playing sold-out shows for fans in Indonesia, Singapore, Thailand, and Japan. During May and June, they toured the United States before returning to Southeast Asia in July for an unprecedented 25-city sold-out tour of Indonesia.

In 1998, FireHouse toured back home on the Rock Never Stops tour, which also included Slaughter, Warrant, Quiet Riot, and L.A. Guns. October of 1998 featured the Asian release of FireHouse’s fifth CD, “Category 5,” on Pony Canyon Records. The album quickly climbed to No. 4 on the Japanese charts and a supporting promotional tour of Japan followed. “Category 5” was officially released in the United States in 1999.

FireHouse continued touring through the winter and spring of 1999, including three more sold-out shows in Tokyo, Nagoya, and Osaka. On April 22, 1999, the band recorded their live show in Osaka. The result was the first-ever live album by FireHouse. “Bring ‘em Out Live” was released in Japan in December of 1999 and in the U.S. on Spitfire Records in July of 2000.

The turn of the century brought the release their seventh album, “O2,” on Pony Canyon Records in Southeast Asia and Spitfire Records in the U.S. This album had notable success despite the changing style of popular rock music. During this time, the band decided to part ways with original bass player Perry Richardson. “O2’s” bass was supplied by Bruce Waibel, who brought his phenomenal talent along with his equally impressive sense of humor. In September of 2003, Waibel passed away and is greatly missed by the band.

FireHouse went back into the studio in early 2003 to write and record their eighth album, “Prime Time,” and followed this up with “Full Circle” in 2011. As music changes over time, FireHouse continues to evolve their musical style yet, at the same time, hang onto their roots. Fans can still expect to hear what FireHouse is famous for – soulful, melodic rock.