Q&A: Def Leppard guitarist ready to pour some sugar on Jiffy Lube Live


WTOP’s Jason Fraley previews Def Leppard at Jiffy Lube Live

Jason Fraley


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WASHINGTON — You know their songs. You’ve seen their T-shirts. Now you can see them live.

Classic rock gods Def Leppard will electrify Jiffy Lube Live in Bristow, Virginia, on Friday, June 8, as part of their six-month nationwide tour alongside fellow ’80s rock legends Journey.

“We toured (together) in 2006 and it was so phenomenally amazing that we promised to do it again,” lead guitarist Phil Collen told WTOP. “We’re really looking forward to it. If it’s anything like the last time, it’ll be amazing. Ticket sales suggest so. Just the fact that everyone’s got all these great songs that everyone can sing along to, it’s just a really good night. It’s amazing.”

Will there be any combo performances between the two bands?

“There was last time,” Collen said. “One of the highlights was in Saratoga Springs in upstate New York. We all had these adjoining dressing rooms, all hanging out, and Jonathan (Cain) said, ‘I wrote ‘Faithfully’ on that piano.’ Then he got on it, started playing it and we all started singing along. It was before everyone started recording stuff and I really wish I had it. Def Leppard and most of Journey sitting around singing! It was like, ‘Whoa! Who’s recording this?’”

While Journey formed in San Francisco in 1973, Def Leppard formed in Sheffield, England, in 1977. Their debut album “On Through the Night” (1980) reached the Top 15 in the U.K., while their next album “High ‘n’ Dry” (1981) featured the MTV hit “Bringin on the Heartbreak.”

“Mutt Lange, our producer, was really instrumental,” Collen said. “He was an amazing visionary. … He’s done the most successful AC/DC album, Shania Twain, who he was married to, Bryan Adams, The Cars. It was just incredible what he added and his concept for what the band was. … We made a hybrid of rock and pop music. … We didn’t look like other rock bands either. It was more in line with how Duran Duran looked than Iron Maiden or Judas Priest.”

Collen joined the band as the lead guitarist in 1982, just on the cusp of worldwide fame.

“It was so perfect because I came in as the lead guitarist,” Collen said. “All of the heavy lifting, all the rhythm guitars and grunt work had already been done. I joined the band …read more

Source:: Wtop – Entertainment


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