Well I sit here after the massive assault known as a Def
Leppard fair show, 1999
Here's my account of what was and what should never be:
#1 I Love old Def Leppard, I'm talking the 1st 2 lps,
Pete Willis in the band, mach 1 version of the
conglomerate that is now known as Defco Inc.
What was hatch prefabbed programmed passing itself off as the Leppard these days on vinyl is a sad
shadow of the former scruffy Sheffeild steel band of yore (or mine?)
Got to the fair grounds round 4 (show at 9.30) as i walked towards the band stand i hear the new single
from the new cd, im thinking ' Why are they playing the cd?' Well all a sudden it stops...it was a sound
check, not a cd, (that was weird) then they start into sumthin vaguely familiar, after a bit i realize they are
doing a cover of Bad Company's 'Rock Steady' (!)
I walk around abit look at the inflatable aliens fair afare... and leave this mess for awhile...
i needed a coke a cola........
Anyway when I get there later about 8 pm I was amazed by the sheer mass of people standing there for
this thing. i cut in line and got in.
Well the 'opening band' was making a catterwally sound from the middle of the racetrack make shift stage
I later find these wunderkin of music are known as MOTORsomething or other (not HEAD)
a quick synopses of this display
(low rent wanna be Soundgarden w/ absolutely no talent) at one point this singer
(Gods gift to Paul Mitchell hair products) goes into this shpeel about how he's gonna free everyone's mind
and other groovy things. At the end of it all before the song started I yodeled the camp fire rallying cry of
'HAIL SATAN' at the top of my lungs (wish i would of had a bull horn)
OK so the lame boy 4 get over and Im standing around looking at the 'clientele' of this festive event.
A quick scan I see all these late 30 s early 40 s way past their bed time types
(as it figures, seeing as THE break thru album (and in my eyes the beginning of the down fall) was
Pyromania, and this lot must of been say any were from 16 to 20 when this things came out.
yes the core audience was in attendance tonight.
Now Id like to make a comment here, BEER SHOULD
NOT BE SOLD AT THESE TYPES OF
EVENTS, ESPECIALLY TO THIS CROWD. (I will explain fully this concept as we go along)
Well the lights go down again and everybody with a beer in their hands starts to howl
and out jumps our featured artist(s) of the night
LIVE FROM THE MIDDLE OF NOWHERE (!)
They surprisingly started with 'Rok Rok till you Drop' from that icky PYRO album
Its a rather mindless flat out speed romp that Ive never minded
(seeing as it was written w/ Pete Willis from DL version 1)
Well I guess they had to show everyone ' hey WE ROK!!'
fair enough... keep this up all night and i'll clap.
2nd song... i have no idea what its is, kinda rocking
At this point all the 'weekend warriors' have already set down
Im standing on my seat to paroose this anomaly, ( I was setting at the very top of the grand stand, section
H row 20 seat 3 jackson 5 (sorry......)
Anyway my memory fades on what was played, all I can say the 1st 4 song were 'hey we can still rok!'
type affair, then they start doing those god awful songs from the mid 80's up. I start to fidget and
grimace at this, but of course the 'Me Generation' is just digging the shite out of this. Then by some divine
intervention, some blessed karmic luck
Joe Elliots mike starts cutting out ( shite song = mike malfunction....makes sense to me)
Well I get a big smile.... then of course they fix and go along (Mr. lead singer ended up w/ a regular mike
with a cord and was none to happy letting every one know by saying 'I FUKKING HATE THIS
LEAD!!!' which of course 'lead' is the english term for chord, but to the semi beerated crowd, they
probably thought he was pissed at a guitar player
Well more goofy sing along not from the first 2 lp songs ensued.... and I realized something, all these song
are indistinguishable from one another till they hit the chorus and then
'ah, its that crap song'
Oddly enough they did a lot more from the 'rokking' PYRO album, which was surprising...
But of course as the night went on the Wonder Years plus
5 crowd really started to get 'tippsy'
(ok kids here's where beer re enters our story)
Case in point. Most white people are rather rhythm less and cant sing.... add beer and a lead singer
encouraging this lot to 'sing along' well heck
NOW THERES A PARTY!
Man I never seen so many budweisr cans in my life
This guy next to me, who kept trying to interact w/ such biting asides as
'This Rocks' and 'Wow just like the record'........He's drinking bud LITE ( so i suppose that made him a
These people will holler at anything
The lead singer blamed the mike problems on the Y2K bug, and the oxygen deprived crowd just loses it
(ok back to beer, the Sid and Marty Krofts generation
and this bunch jumping up and down with shiny
All I got to say when Pour some Sugar on Meat (as a good
friend of mine coined) kicked in
WELL HELL, this sea of CPA's just went into overdrive (!!!!!!!)
(God the humanity of it all..............)
The crowd was lurching around slurring the lyrics (they
THINK are the words) and all the women are
trying to sashay and shake their no longer so fresh bootys like the girls from the video
(oh the humanity)
IT WAS AN ABSOLUTE CAR WRECK
Just couldn't take my eyes off this reliving of a paganistic rite of passage by this ensemble of
At which point i notice Bucky now next to me has went and bought A WHOLE CASE OF BUD LITE
Well it all gets a little blurry from this point, couples
are hugging and sharing a tender moment,
remembering that special night between the steering wheel and the stick shift, to some tepid no balls latter
years Leppard ( a yeeeee)
Some where in this maylay of bad taste and bad haircuts, DEF LEP
do 'Rok of Ages' from (you guessed it!) The rocking album PYROMANITY
When the opening 4 word phrase 'obben gleebin globbing
gonads ' was uttered, I suspect
many a concert patrons were confused by this, as disorientation
set in and the beer regurgitation reflex kicked in.
And then they played Photograph
(I mean HEY they HAD to play their Stairway to Heaven)
much stuff ensued
Drunk closet Styx fans start chanting for an encore
These Lite rednecks next to me start howling this rather perplexing cheer, all i caught was the words
'Goddamn' and 'shit'
(in retaliation I ran George Carlins ' 7 words you cant say on TV ' skit thru my mind to off set dangerous UV rays)
Leep Deppard re appear and do another 'sounds like the
rest of the late 80's drek'
the 'feel good' crowd happily lurched along to this offering of the very little
I was getting nauseated
way to much drek
and pho (as in phony) 'ROK!'
I was thinking to myself, What de fuk happened to these
ITS ALL MUTT LANGES FAULT! PUNISH HIM!!
MAKE HIM LISTEN TO HYSTERIA NON STOP!
MAKE HIM SUFFER!
AND THEN SEND HIS WIFE OVER TO MY HOUSE FOR TEA!!
(um i mean anyway...)
but then guess what happened
(yes Virginia there is a Santa Clause)
they played 'Let It Go' from HIGH 'n' DRY
I was actually stunned.
after all this
they play a tune from the Holy Duo of the only 2 Lep cds worth scaring grandma with.
And a funny thing happened as they ripped thru this gem of the past
all the 'i want my MTV' people weren't singing along
they got all cunfoosed
and just kinda pretended to know what was going on
that was sweet
and then it was over
its amazing really they even played that last song
was almost worth it to know that this lot of TGIF ers went away with that lingering thought of
'Great show cept for that last song, kind ruined it '
Nothing left to see here folks, move along........
VH 1 Story tellers
One night at 1a.m. I saw that the Def Leppard version of 'HI, there's a Deep and Meaningful story behind our songs' was on. So since it was 1 a.m. and boredom ran rampant, I watched this display of ego stroking. What I saw was not pretty really, just rehash of the BIG HITS, some fluffed up w/ acoustics, doing their best Jim Croche. A real good description of their Post Pete / Pyromania up stuff, is DRONE, as in 'This shit just DRONES ON AND ON' Formula Rock at it's most Shameless.....
Of course any hope or thought of anything from the 1st 2 Pete Willis era albums was totally out of the Question. (You know the funny thing that strikes me about it all, is that they NEVER play 'Bringing on the Heartbreak' anymore, not that it was a big fave of mine mind you, but it was from the Holy Duo of the 1st 2 lps. For years it was their 'Stairway to Heaven' but was later replaced by 'Photograph', which of course they played..........)THANK GOD FOR THAT! (.....................)
About 1/2 way threw this fun and
sharing program, they asked the audience for Questions (weeee)
I was waiting for Questions to range from 'How's it feel to sell so many records' to "Gee Joe, I just wanted to tell you YOU'RE KEEN" (aHEE!)
Instead something VERY interesting
happened, nearly made be spit my Coke a Cola across the room.
Some girl got up wearing a 'Slang' t-shirt (from their disastrous 'alterna leppard' record)
And asked the fatal Question:
"Why don't you guys play any songs
from the 1st 2 records??? I know you guys hate the first record"
God you could have heard a pin drop. THE Question I would have asked (and their greatest fear comes to the fore)
Well you could tell Mr. Lead Singer was flustered by that: "We don't hate the 1st album!"
and she goes "Well why don't you play songs that people wanna hear, like WASTED"
(at which point guitarist Phil Collins ( ya ya i know its Collen) breaks into the unbelievably heavy opening riff of WASTED, which got the crowd curiously whipped up ...)
Of course it was too good to be true, and Mr. Lead Singer cut adventurous guitar-guy off, and commences to explain in a real round about, convoluted way how outta 10,000 people only 12 would wanna hear those songs (where the fuk did he get those figures??)
Then she asked another question
that had them crawling under the carpet:
"Why do you always release Ballads instead of Rockers as singles?"
(Again, the potential for me to spew Coke across the room was way high)
This brought about an even more squeamish 'Im not comfortable with this line of questioning, where's my lawyer' response:
"Well, bands always complain about having to release Ballads as singles, but the truth is that if ya wanna have a #1 song you have to play the game"
(!?!)(or something like that, but that's what he basically said)
I couldn't believe it, he actually admitted that on national tv.
(YES AMERICA WE ARE WHORES)
sad sad sad......
To somewhat save face, somewhere
in all this mess, they played a 'Rocker' from their latest album
(Hysteria part 5)
When they finished they looked like they were about to fall over, sweating and puffing up a storm
(ha serves ya right being outta shape, playing Snoozoid Ballads for the last 15 plus years)
Well that's about the size of it, and remember shrinkage has more to do with than just cold water...
THAT IS PETE ( bio and more)