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Def Leppard

1977-
Joe Elliott(vocals)1977-
Pete Willis(guitar)1977-1981
Rick Savage(bass)1977-
Rick Allen(drums)1979-
Steve Clark(guitar)1977-1991
Phil Collen(guitar)1981-
Vivian Campbell(guitar)1992-
Tony Kennerig(drums)1977-1978

Artistfacts for Def Leppard

  • Formed in England, their name was originally spelled Deaf Leopard. They got the idea to alter the spelling from Led Zeppelin.
  • Rick Allen lost his left arm in a car accident on New Year's Eve, 1984 when he was racing his Corvette on a road in Sheffield, England. He flew through the windshield and his arm was ripped off by the seat belt. He quickly expressed his desire to stay with the band, and learned to play with a specially designed, computer-assisted drum kit.
  • Guitarist Steve Clark died of a drug and alcohol overdose in 1991.
  • Joe Elliott started a Mott The Hoople cover band in 2009 called the Down 'n' Outz. In his Songfacts interview, Elliott said that recording and performing in this band frees him from the expectations that come with any new Def Leppard material. It's also a way for him to introduce some of his favorite Mott/Ian Hunter songs to a new audience.
  • Steve Clark was dubbed "The Riff-Master" because of his ability to make lots of catchy riffs for the band, many of which were not recorded to songs.
  • Clark and Collen were known as "The Terror Twins," a reference to Aerosmith's Toxic Twins. (thanks, Matt - Lee's Summit, MO, for above 2)
  • Thomas Dolby played keyboards on the Pyromania album. He is credited as Booker T. Boffin.
  • Allen was once criticized by Queen Elizabeth because of the Union Jack boxers he wore onstage. The Union Jack is the flag representing the United Kingdom.
  • Their first concert was in a room in a spoon factory in Sheffield, England. Only six people went to it. (thanks, Tom - Trowbridge, England)
  • Mutt Lange produced Def Leppard's second album, High 'n' Dry. As he had done with AC/DC and Foreigner, Lange infused their songs with Pop appeal while building on their Rock foundation. His contributions were so significant that when he produced their next two albums, Lange was credited as a co-writer on every song.
  • On October 23 1995, the band played three 45-minute shows on three different continents. One show was in Tangier, Morocco, another was in London, and the last one was in Vancouver, British Columbia.
  • Before joining Def Leppard, Vivian Campbell played in Dio and Whitesnake. (thanks, Gavin - Colchester, England)
  • Phil Collen joined Def Leppard after the dismissal of founding member Pete Willis. Collen had previously been a member of a glam band named "Girl." (thanks, Michael - San Diego, CA)
  • While some individual members had serious problems with drugs and alcohol, the band was quite tame when they toured, avoiding the typical Rock mayhem and excess. Said Elliott: "Since rock bands discovered accountants, they don't throw TVs out of windows at 500 quid a time."
  • Their two biggest albums, Pyromania and Hysteria, were released around the same time as Michael Jackson's Thriller and Bad, and spent a lot of time at #2 on the album charts as a result.
  • Many British bands move out of England when they become famous to avoid the heavy taxes, which is known as becoming a "Tax Exile." Def Leppard did this in 1984, moving to Ireland so they could keep more of their money.
  • It wasn't until their 1987 Hysteria album that they broke out in their home country of England. Their biggest success was in America, where Pyromania sold almost 7 million copies, but just 60,000 in England.
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Comments: 22

OMfg this the best band i have ever heard. i believe that i was ment to be born in the 80'sGarrett Skelton - Big Spring , Tx
im a led zeppelin fan and i saw them in about 81 at cambridge uk and i fell asleep leaning on the stage -i was right in the centre of the crowd-out my head on some sort of substnaces with friends and it was so boring withi minutes of them coming on stage i was asleep with my head on the stage itself-i thought they were poor obviously and nothing like the quality that is led zeppelin-i had voted to see the undertones -the band voted best live act of that period in time-but i was out-voted by my mates who were also led zep fans of course
i can see they are very much a led zep tribute band and i did half like about 3 singles by them but i think they were released after i saw them and i always rate it as the most boring live performance i have ever been to and the second most boring was a david bowie concert in 82-ish at m/keynes
the best was a leonard cohen concert and a genesis 1973 stage-show re-enactment tribute band called the musical box and also the jam were very good live.
ive also seen led zep at knebworth and the stones twice and zep and the stones were all boring too-but much better than def leopard -i just hope no one on earth actually thinks they r better than zep-if they do let me know-cos i would find that fascinating lol
Steve - Cambridge, United Kingdom
Loved the album: Pyromania. I've seen them in concert many times. Excellent!Hannah - Ottawa, On
I am also only 14 but i love Def Leppard I started listening to them when i was only 4 or 5 and i love them, long live Steve Joe Rick Rick Phil and VivianShane - Bangor, Me
Def Leppard sold the most albums in the U.S. than any other British bands in the 80'sPhilippe - Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
i love def leppard! joe elliott and phil collen are the sexiest rockers ever! rick allen is a rock god! R.I.P. steve clark. we all miss you! i almost got to see def lep at the minnesota state fair back in 05.Heather - White Bear Lake, Mn
drummers a gimp!Kane - Escondido, Ca
Def Leppard i awesome!!im only 14 and not many concert come to my little town but , i love 80's music and Def Leppard is the band that really got me into it! R.I.P STEVEN CLARKSamantha - Missouri, Mo
Amo esta banda,me parece muy cool y buena,ni ke decir de sus canciones,son rockeronas y tambien baladas,DL es la mejor banda,no solo de Reino Unido,sino del mundo,son los mejores,los amo y los amare por siempre!!!Viva Def Leppard!Milagros - Lima, Peru
Sorry folks, but a few errors need to be cleared up.

First, Rick Savage lives in Sheffield, England--the only member to still live in England full-time.

Also, it wasn't a lack of interest that made Def Leppard create their own label for their debut record. They were still just a young "garage band." That little self-financed album (Joe's dad lent them the money) sold through the roof, resulting in a bidding-war between major labels.
Sean - Nashville, Tn
Umm...Patricia, I hate to burst your bubble, but 'Def Leppard' is the name of the band, not the lead singer...Just like 'Led Zeppelin' isn't the lead singer's name of that group. So, in answer to your question, I bet it is a big NO. And BTW, Jethro Tull isn't the name of the lead singer/flutist of that group either.Randy - Colerain Twp., Oh
Today is 11/04/06 and I just discovered Def is from England. My family was also from England and our last name is spelled Leppard. I have often wondered if we were related but didn't realize he was from the same Country as my family. It might be fun to know if we are related.Patricia - Devils Lake, Nd
def leppard is the greatest band ever. I'm 16 and began discovering their music a year ago. Photograph, Animal and On through the night are my fav songsAditya - Ottawa, Canada
i played gold with rick savage, and i've been to a couple concertsKeegan - ....., United States
Unfortunately i have not had the chance to see Def Leppard live but as soon as the opportunity comes my way i am going to grab it because they are the best band in the world. Phil Collen is the greatest and sexiest guitarist ever.Lisa - No City, Wales
I've been a fan from the very early eighties. Def Leppard are the one and only true band that are able to belt out a rock and roll song to cause an earth quake and then follow it up with a rock ballard that can silence an audiance of thousands.
Nige
Nigel - Ontario, Canada
Went to their concert here in the 'Burgh recently. They rock out loud!Brad - Pittsburgh, Pa
def leppard is one of the greatest bands of all time.I have been lucky enough to see them 3x and they are awesome....rock onMimi - Bennington, Vt
Hi. I think Def Leppard are one of the greatest bands of the hit and miss genre that is Pop-metal. I'm actually from Rotherham that is just north-east of Def Leppard's home city of Sheffield. They're my home-town rock heroes!Ben - Rotherham, England
the pole vault pre-tour in Tangier. I was there!! the preshow after diner with the band and the gnawas was epic in its proportion(Rick Allen on a gnawas bassdrum). the concert in the hercules caves was simply magnificent.Ismael - Tangier, Morocco
Never miss a chance to see them. They are great in concert. Nice bunch of guys.Bryan - Colorado Springs, Co
Great band, they write hard rock songs just as well as power ballads! From Pour Some Sugar On Me to Love Bites, it's all great!Tom - St. Louis, Mo