Whitesnake guitarist Joel Hoekstra says frontman David Coverdale goes out of his way to be supportive of his bandmates.
The former Night Ranger and Trans Siberian Orchestra axeman joined Whitesnake in 2014 and says he’s enjoying working with Coverdale and fellow guitarist Reb Beach.
And he describes drummer Tommy Aldridge as “a living legend.”
Hoekstra says the band benefit from Coverdale’s support and adds that he was touched when the singer name-checked him while being inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame this year with Deep Purple.
Hoekstra tells Metal Rules: “David is great professionally and personally. He is very straightforward with what he wants with the band.
“On a personal level, I think he is really supportive of his players and loves to build us up. He even mentioned me by name during his Hall Of Fame induction, that’s huge. It is very much appreciated as a guy who is still looking to make a name for himself.
“There are not many guys that can balance being a funny and witty guy then the next minute telling you stories about working with Jimmy Page or Ritchie Blackmore. I don’t take it for granted, same goes with Tommy, no disrespect to anyone else but he is such a legend on the drums.
“I show these guys the proper level of respect and pick their brains to learn as much as I can from playing with them.”
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Coverdale said in April that he will retire in 2017, but Hoekstra says nothing has been 100% decided as far as he knows.
He says: “I don’t think anyone really knows at this point, not even David. I think he is taking it step by step.
“I know he has floated the concept of retirement in 2017 but there has also been a little talk about a CD and tour, honestly I don’t know where it is headed. We are just having fun and keeping him inspired and enthused – same thing he does for us.”
Whitesnake have a string of dates remaining on their Greatest Hits tour in 2016.
Whitesnake remaining 2016 tour dates
Jun 28: Lewiston Artpark Amphitheatre, NY
Jun 29: Silver Spring The Fillmore, MD
Jul 01: Atlantic City Trumps Taj Mahal Arena, NJ
Jul 02: Wilkes-Barre Mohegan Sun Pocono, PA
Jul 14: Verona Castello Di Villafranca, Italy
Jul 15: Pistoia Blues Festival, Italy
Jul 17: Barcelona Rock Fest, Spain
Jul 19: Paris Olympia, France
Jul 21: Oberhausen Turbinenhalle, Germany
Jul 23: Ramblin’ Man Fair, UK
Jul 26: Oslo Sentrum Scene, Norway
Aug 03: Frederiksberg Falconer Salen, Denmark
Aug 04: Wacken Open Air, Germany
Aug 06: Festival Rock Legend, Poland
Aug 09: Pratteln Z7 Konzertfabrik, Switzerland
Aug 11: Tilburg Poppodium 013, Netherlands
Aug 13: Alcatraz Festival, Belgium
Sep 09: Mexico City Pepsi Center, Mexico
Sep 13: Santiago Movistar Arena, Chile
Sep 16: Buenos Aires Tecnopolis, Argentina
Sep 17: Cordoba Plaza De La Musica, Argentina
Sep 20: Porto Alegre Pepsi On Stage, Brazil
Sep 22: Sao Paulo Citibank Hall, Brazil
Sep 23: Sao Paulo Citibank Hall, Brazil
Sep 25: Olinda Chevrolet Hall, Brazil
Sep 28: Brasilia NET Live, Brazil
Sep 30: Curitiba Master Hall, Brazil
Oct 02: Rio De Janeiro Metropolitan, Brazil