Vintage Video: Hinder's Austin Winkler On 'November Rain'

Hinder Publicity 2010
Pamela Littky

Hinder frontman Austin Winkler curates the first clip in a new feature we're calling "Vintage Video." The rocker's choice? Guns N' Roses' epic ballad.

Carrying the hard rock torch into a new decade, Oklahoma's Hinder is back with its third album, All American Nightmare (out December 7). No strangers to the pressures of a follow-up -- the band's debut, 2005's Extreme Behavior, was a surprise hit, selling over three million copies -- frontman Austin Winkler says the title refers in part to the state of the music industry. "Nobody's buying records anymore and something like 92% of kids these days listen to the bullshit shoved their throats," he tells THR. "It's a fad -- it's simple music, nursery rhyme shit, all electronic so you can pump it out faster. Hopefully, it will die and rock will prevail again." 

With that in mind, we asked Austin Winkler to come up with a singular rock moment that made an impact on him growing up. It's the first in a new feature we're calling "Vintage Video," which will be curated by a different artist each week. His choice? The epic Guns N' Roses ballad, "November Rain."  
When the video premiered on MTV in 1992, it was an event, and at 8 minutes and 57 seconds, it was the longest song ever to make the Top 10 of the Billboard 100. "I used to watch MTV and just sit and wait unlit the video came on," says Winkler. "I was just mesmerized by it: the soft piano, the orchestra, the same drums over the whole song, Axl Rose's nasty, raunchy voice, Slash's solo outside the little wooden church, when inside it was this this huge cathedral. It's so cheesy but it works." 
With a budget of $1.5 million, a rarity at the time and certainly so today, the clip, which starred Rose's then girlfriend Stephanie Seymour as his bride-to-be, used multiple locations to tell the story, including one smoky party scene at The Rainbow, the famed Sunset Strip bar that hosted countless rock stars in the '70s, '80s, and '90s. "The first time we went to LA, I made a point to go there," says Winkler of the Hollywood haunt. "I wanted to do everything in that video. And as a band, Use Your Illusion I is one record we can all agree on that we absolutely love."  
Nearly 20 years since its release, Winkler says he still can't separate the song from the video. "No matter how I listen to it, I put the two together, but I think 'November Rain' has held up amazing. It still sounds fresh to me."