The British rock band got its start in 1977 and is considered part of the New Wave of British Heavy Metal movement. Current members include Rick Savage, Joe Elliott, Rick Allen, Phil Collen, and Vivian Campbell. They have a total of nine studio albums, one live album, and three compilation ... More
The British rock band got its start in 1977 and is considered part of the New Wave of British Heavy Metal movement. Current members include Rick Savage, Joe Elliott, Rick Allen, Phil Collen, and Vivian Campbell. They have a total of nine studio albums, one live album, and three compilation albums since their 1980 debut with On Through The Night. They are one of the best-selling bands of all time, ranked #31 on VH1’s 100 Greatest Artists of Hard Rock, and #70 on their 100 Greatest Artists of All Time. Of seven American Music Award nominations, they have two wins and have also been nominated for six MTV Video Music Awards. In 2000, they were awarded a star on Hollywood’s Walk of Fame.
By the time they released their debut album, the band had already built up a steady fanbase through live performances and EP releases. They signed with Mercury and had a solid release, but some thought the band was trying too hard to appeal to an American audience. Their sophomore album, High ‘n’ Dry, was released a year later in 1981, but they fell from #15 on the UK charts with their first album to #26. Def Leppard followed with their third album, Pyromania, in 1983 and reached #18 on the UK charts, but #2 on the US Billboard 200. The only reason they didn’t reach #1: Michael Jackson’s Thriller.
After writing and recording a new album for a few years, they released their fourth album, Hysteria in 1987. This time, they reached #1 in both the UK and the US, which continued for the 1992 release of Adrenalize. During those years, several band members struggled with their health, from a car accident to alcoholism, but the band wanted to avoid taking another lengthy break between albums.
They released two compilation albums in 1993 and 1995, Retro Active and Vault: Def Leppard Greatest Hits (1980-1995), but a new studio album didn’t come until 1996’s Slang, which was successful but not by the standards they had set with their two previous records. Though they continued to tour, they were not in as high demand as they had been in the 80s and early 90s.
In the 2000s, they had a slight re-emergence, but still did not hit the charts as high as they had been. Their latest album, 2008’s Songs From The Sparkle Lounge, which hit #5 on the US Billboard, the highest since 1992.
Def Leppard cancelled part of their tour in 2009 due to personal matters, but in 2011, came back with a new live album, Mirrorball, and a world tour. They will embark on a North American tour --The Rock of Ages Tour-- starting on June 20 in Salt Lake City, UT and will travel throughout the summer.