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 Article from 2005 - Def Leppard ready for hysteria at Nissan

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PostSubject: Article from 2005 - Def Leppard ready for hysteria at Nissan   Thu Mar 01, 2007 9:48 pm

Def Leppard ready for hysteria at Nissan


By Emily Brown
Potomac News
Thursday, October 13, 2005



He never wanted to be famous; he only wanted to be a musician.

But with 27 years of music behind him, 13 of those as guitarist for Def Leppard, Vivian Campbell deals with the byproduct of his career.

“You don’t start playing guitar to get famous. Maybe to meet girls,” he joked.

But the real reason the rock star can’t get enough, is for the high he can only find one place.

“Every time we go onstage, it’s such an incredible feeling,” he said with the enthusiasm of an up-and-coming hopeful. “The energy transfer is instantaneous.”

Campbell and Def Leppard will feel the rush locally bringing their “Rock of Ages” tour Friday to Nissan Pavilion in Bristow. They share the bill with Bryan Adams, known for his rock hits (“Summer of ’69” and “Cuts Like A Knife”) then mellow escape to movie ballads (“All For Love,” and “Have You Ever Really Loved A Woman”).

Campbell, 43, a native of Belfast, Northern Ireland, now living in Los Angeles with his wife and 4- and 6-year-old daughters, said the fact the band has the same euphoric feeling when they take the stage as they did decades ago isn’t what’s most impressive.

“What’s really remarkable about Def Leppard is they still have a career after all these years,” Campbell said.

In February or March 2006 they’ll extend their career with their 13th release, a cover album of songs by artists who inspire them.

In 1977, singer Joe Elliot and bassist Rick Savage held the band’s first rehearsal in a spoon factory in Sheffield, England. They picked up their third and current drummer Rick Allen in 1978, and their second and current guitarist Phil Collen in 1982. Campbell, who played in Dio and Whitesnake, replaced Steve Clark in 1992 after the guitarist died from mixing painkillers and alcohol the year before.

After 13 years, Campbell said he’s still referred to as the new guy.

“I hope I’m always the new guy,” he said. “If I’m not the new guy, that means somebody left.”

Campbell joined Def Leppard as their fifth album “Adrenalize” hit stores. Before that “Pyromania” fared well with the track “Photograph” as a chart hit.

In 1987, “Hysteria” broke releasing seven of 12 tracks as singles - “Women,” “Animal,” “Hysteria,” “Pour Some Sugar On Me,” “Love Bites,” “Armageddon It,” “Rocket” - and selling 16 million copies. After touring, the band worked on “Adrenalize,” recording as a foursome when Clark died in the middle of recording.

Since then, they’ve released seven more albums, five focusing on previously recorded but unreleased tracks or compilations of their hits. The latest, “Rock of Ages: The Definite Collection,” is a slightly different version of their “Best Of” release.

This weekend, and at shows for the next month, Campbell will turn out the familiar sounds of the band’s classics (“People will hear what they expect to hear,” he said) and covers from the upcoming release.

With so much time spent together writing, recording and touring, side projects keep everyone fresh, Campbell said.
Elliot and Collen have Cybernauts, where they play old David Bowie, Ziggy Stardust and Spiders From Mars songs. Allen began the Raven Drum Foundation to provide free arts programs to strengthen individuals during tough times.

Campbell put together a blues album to showcase his singing talent, though he expects the disc to bring in little money.
“It was something I wanted to do as a singer,” Campbell said. “It’s one thing people don’t know about me.”

“The Two Sides of If” debuted two weeks ago. Campbell said his one and only show promoting the album was nerve wracking and being the front man, talking with the audience, was a stressful experience.

For Campbell, he’s fine with being the “new guy,” the guitarist blending in with his band mates, for many more years.

“I have no desire whatsoever to be a solo artist,” he said. “I want to be part of a band. That’s where I function best.”

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