In a recent interview, producer Sterling Winfield, who worked on Pantera's final studio album, Reinventing the Steel, revealed that there were other guitar players considered for the tribute tour in addition to Zakk Wylde.
Said Winfield (transcribed by Blabbermouth), "[T]here were some other guitar folks that were brought up. I'll just say this — that it would not have been a good fit, and quite honestly, they would not have been able to pull it off. But it always kept circling back around to Zakk."
In addition to discussing the clearly successful tribute tour, Winfield also weighed in on the possibility of the band — Phil Anselmo and Rex Brown, along with Wylde and Anthrax drummer Charlie Benante — going into the studio to record new music.
"It's not unheard of, it's not blasphemous," Winfield said. "I will say that it is entirely plausible, it is entirely possible, but at this point in time, I don't know that anybody's looking that far down the road. They've got a world tour to tackle, man, for the next two years, and they are gonna be busy doing that. Now, could it happen? Yes."
As for how he would feel about it, Winfield continued, "It depends, man. Again, it has to be done right, like this whole thing; the whole tour that's happening has to be done properly. And I don't really feel comfortable — if it were to happen, I would not feel comfortable calling it Pantera. I don't think that would be classy. I'll put it that way. And I'll just leave it at that for now.
"[But] this lineup could make some very badass music. And the music is all that matters."