Def Leppard frontman Joe Elliott spoke with Steve Baltin of Forbes. Excerpts from the interview appear below.

Baltic: …For me, I got into Def Leppard during Pyromania, so that will always be the seminal album for me.

Elliott: I got into David Bowie during Ziggy Stardust and then backtracked to Hunky Dory, which I adore, but I still can’t get past the fact that I discovered Hunky Dory because of Ziggy Stardust. I discovered Man Who Sold The World because of Ziggy Stardust, then I bought Aladdin Sane, which I loved to death, but I only bought it because I got into Bowie on Ziggy Stardust. So everybody has got their anchor to whatever artist you love. When I look at a band like the Who, I don’t have a specific record because the Who were a band that was already there and then I started to buy their records, so it’s a toss-up between Who’s Next, Quadrophenia, Tommy and all that kind of stuff. It all depends who you’re talking to, I speak to worlds of musicians in band[s] who prefer High N’ Dry to anything we’ve ever done before. It just depends when you catch people. From a commercial point of view, from an artistic point of view, from a pushing the envelope point of view I think Hysteria trumps all of them up to that point.

Baltin: Do you feel more attached to that album because it was just so hard to make it?

Elliott: It just took a long time to make it, so it was drilled into our DNA. I made a couple of albums for my side band, the Down N Outz…It was painless, it was easy…But Hysteria we were on it every day for two years, longer even. So it becomes way more engrained in your DNA than say even Pyromania. The first album took three weeks, High N’ Dry took about three months, Pyromania took about nine, Hysteria took two and a half years. Adrenalize probably took two. Those records, because you are on them day in, day out, stick with you, they give you more stories, they give you more things to talk about. If somebody said to me we’re gonna spend half an hour talking about High N’ Dry I would run out of things to say because I don’t remember. With Hysteria it’s all those things because of the time factor involved in recording it and because of what it became. I’m not musically comparing it to Hotel California or Rumours, but, to our audience, it’s that kind of record that has lasted the test of time.

Baltin: Def Leppard went through so much and came out the other side. After seeing what happened to Chester Bennington and Chris Cornell is there any advice you have for artists on how to deal with the music industry and fame?

Elliott: Musicians face pressure from outside of your own brain to deliver all through your career. It’s hard for kids and then it gets harder in your thirties because you have a legacy to follow and then it gets harder in your forties when you have family commitments or whatever. I don’t give advice because what works for me wouldn’t work for you, wouldn’t work for Chris Cornell, wouldn’t work for Chester Bennington, wouldn’t have worked for Mama Cass, Jimi Hendrix, Kurt Cobain, nor anybody else who died by the age of 27. It’s nothing new. It didn’t work for Steve Clarke. The path to Rock N’ Roll glory is littered with casualties, absolutely. It’s not like the great Joe Elliott speaks and everybody goes, “I want to stop taking drugs now.” When you look at our band we’ve got two casualties, we lost Pete Willis to alcohol, but he didn’t die. We lost Steve Clarke to alcohol and he did. Then you look at somebody like Phil Colleen who’s 30 years sober, 26 years a vegetarian or the other way around, now a vegan, he’s like the fittest almost 60-year-old man you’ll ever meet. We’ve conquered a lot of negativity in our career to keep going, having watched some people, including our own, fall by the wayside. So advice, to me, is a minefield of a word. And it’s not something I readily throw out there because it doesn’t always work with whoever’s reading or listening to what I’ve got to say.

Read more at Forbes.

Def Leppard released their special 30th anniversary editions of Hysteria on August 4th. Additionally, guitarist Phil Collen recently told Jones’s Jukebox, on Los Angeles radio station KLOS, that the band will probably hit the road in 2018 for a special tour that will include entire performances of Hysteria every night.


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Rock Scene reports:

A “scholar of metal and all that rocks!”, Eddie Trunk got his first taste of “heavy music” around the age of ten. A band called the Raspberries was playing on A.M. radio. Eddie was immediately hooked and had his parents buy him all four of their records. It was all Raspberries all the time for him until a year later. Eddie was walking home from Junior high school with a friend. As they passed the local record store, Scotty’s Records, his friend asked if he wanted to go in while he bought a record, to which his friend replied, “I’m going in to buy a record by this band called KISS.” Until this point, Eddie had never heard of KISS. He was intrigued. He asked his friend, “which one are you going to buy?” His friend said, “I’m going to buy the new one, Rock & Roll Over.” He proceeded to give Eddie a little “coaching.” He told him to buy another one since Rock & Roll Over had just come out & he wasn’t sure how “it was.” Eddie took his friend’s advice and bought Destroyer.

Eddie reminisces, “The first concert I went to was KISS Dec 16, 1977 at Madison Square Garden. I remember the guys outside selling the t-shirts and the whole scene walking in. Inside, there was this weird smell in the air. I didn’t know what it was, everyone getting high.” Eddie just turned 13 and didn’t understand the concept of amplification. “Here I was at the top level of the Garden; with 15 – 20,000 people and the band is looking this big to me, but it was loud as hell. I couldn’t understand how a bunch of guys playing guitars that far away, that small, being that loud where I was sitting. It took me a while to realize it about the power of amplification.”

Eddie tried his hand at playing drums. However, he didn’t have the patience or self-discipline, so he gave up on the idea of being a musician and began to think how he could work in the music industry to connect and help the bands he loved. In high school, Eddie was ridiculed for the music he liked. He was determined to turn people on to the music he liked and help the bands by bringing them a bigger audience. He just had to figure out how to get the message out. So, he started writing the music column in his high school newspaper. In his senior year, Drew University came to his high school, asking the students if they were interested in learning radio. Of course, Eddie applied and did his first gig DJ-ing that summer. Right out of high school, he got a job at a record store. He made a lot of connections while working there. One, being someone who had a pirate radio station in their basement. There, he made a demo and started sending it to WDHA relentlessly until they gave him a show, where he could play the music he loved. That show was one of the first radio shows in America to focus on Heavy Metal music.

In 1982, Jonny Zazula and wife Marsha founded Megaforce records to publish the first works of Metallica. Jonny also owned Rock N Roll Heaven record store. That’s where Eddie Trunk got to know Jonny Z. Eddie would go there to buy records and magazines that he couldn’t find anywhere else. In 1983, when Eddie got his first radio show on WDHA, he would buy records from Jonny and play them on his show. Before long, when Eddie went to pay for his albums, Jonny would decline taking his money. Jonny realized that he would sell more albums if Eddie would play them on his show. A friendship was formed.

Eddie was doing his show for about six-months. One day; while he was broadcasting, a knock came on the studio door. It was Jonny Z. He said that he wouldn’t leave until Eddie played a song from the new album from an up and coming band that was on his Megaforce label. Eddie knew Jonny wouldn’t leave until he got his way, so Eddie agreed to play a song. The band turned out to be Metallica and the album was Kill ‘Em All.

Jonny was grateful. He told Eddie that if he could ever afford to hire someone to really get Megaforce going, he would hire Eddie. A couple of years later, Jonny Z. called Eddie. True to his word, he offered Eddie a job. Megaforce had mostly “heavy” music on their roster. Bands such as Anthrax, Overkill, Man O War, and Raven were all selling albums and concert tickets, but were not getting air-play on any major radio stations. Eddie approached Jonny with the idea to sign a few acts that were more “radio friendly” – stuff that could get air-play and help bring the label to a new level. Eddie suggested tracking down Ace Frehley to see if he would be interested in signing with Megaforce. Eddie Kramer put together a lunch meeting with Ace, Jonny and Eddie. Ace signed with Megaforce and in 1987 released Frehley’s Comet, the first solo album Ace released after leaving KISS. Eddie continues to carry the rock n’ roll torch, and is truly an ambassador of rock.

Watch the video below.


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Few metal bands have been as influential and have had the longevity as Diamond Head – listed as a major influence by two of metal’s biggest, Metallica and Megadeth. Led by co-founding member/guitarist Brian Tatler, Diamond Head will be launching a North American tour that will include both US and Canadian dates, beginning on August 19th with Psycho Las Vegas festival appearance and ending on September 11th at Saint Vitus in Brooklyn, New York.

“We are excited to get back to North America and see our old friends once more,” says Tatler and Wilcox (who resides in the US).

“Diamond Head may not have toured the continent as much as we would have liked way back when, but we are certainly making up for it now! And the band sounds better than ever,” states Brian.

As part of the New Wave of British Heavy Metal in the late ‘70s/early ‘80s, Diamond Head came up in the same scene as eventual global headliners Def Leppard and Iron Maiden. And while Diamond Head did not achieve the same commercial success as the aforementioned bands, they did influence countless subsequent musicians – especially Metallica, as it was a then-teenaged Lars Ulrich that befriended the band early on and became a major fan. Subsequently, Metallica has covered such Diamond Head classics as Am I Evil, Helpless, The Prince, and It’s Electric multiple times – on multiple platinum releases.

In addition to performing these classics at their upcoming U.S. shows, expect to also hear material performed off their latest release – 2016’s self-titled offering. There is a new Diamond Head album already in the works (set for release next year).

Soon, many North American headbangers will get their chance to see the legendary Diamond Head and hear the songs that inspired a generation of musicians on a nearby concert stage.

Diamond Head U.S. Tour 2017:

8/19 Las Vegas, NV Psycho Las Vegas 2017
8/20 Salt Lake City, UT Liquid Joes
8/23 Portland, OR Bossanova Ballrooms
8/24 Seattle, WA El Corazon
8/25 Vancouver, BC Rickshaw Theater
8/26 Victoria, BC Logan’s Pub
8/27 Vernon, BC The Green
8/28 Calgary, AB Dickens
8/29 Edmonton, AB The Forge
8/30 Saskatoon, SK Capitol Music Club
8/31 Winnipeg, ON Park Theater

9/2 Sault Sainte-Marie Canadian Nightclub
9/3 Sudbury, ON The Asylum
9/4 Toronto, ON Coalition
9/5 Windsor, ON Backstage
9/6 Ottawa, ON The Maverick
9/7 Quebec, QU l’Anti
9/8 Jonquière, QU Salle 4 Barils
9/9 Montreal, QU Wings of Metal Festival
9/10 Liverpool, NY Sharkey’s
9/11 Brooklyn, NY Saint Vitus

Diamond Head 2017 Line-Up:

Brian Tatler – Guitars
Rasmus Bom Andersen – Vocals
Abbz Abberley – Guitars
Dean Ashton – Bass
Karl Wilcox – Drums

Diamond Head online:

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Ruben Mosqueda of Sleaze Roxx spoke with virtuoso bassist Billy Sheehan. Highlights from the interview below.

Sleaze Roxx: Why Santiago [Chile]? I imagine you could have shot the [Dog Years: Live In Santiago & Beyond 2013-2016] Blu-Ray anywhere?

Billy Sheehan: Well, we went with a show where it would be easier for the film crew, audio recording crew to get to and the people of Santiago were amazing and the audience was great. In the end, everything worked out perfectly.

Sleaze Roxx: When I spoke to Ritchie [Kotzen], he mentioned that there were some demos and unfinished songs. Some of those turned up on Dog Treats on Live In Santiago. You’ve included a CD with five studio cuts. Has The Dogs’ “vault” been emptied at this point in time?

Billy Sheehan: There’s a few things still lying around… they’re not completed. We don’t plan things out. There’s [no] grand master plan with The Winery Dogs. Things just happen how they happen. We knew we had this live DVD coming out and we had some songs that had been completed and we decided to include them in this package. One of the songs on that CD is Moonage Daydream which as you know is a [David] Bowie cover. We had performed that one live a few times after his passing. We decided to include that just to commemorate the man. There’s some stuff in the vault that could surface at a later time.

Sleaze Roxx: Another thing that you’re a part of is the band Sons of Apollo. Is this a band or a project? It’s a super group drummer Mike Portnoy [The Winery Dogs, Dream Theater]is in it with you, guitarist Bumblefoot [Guns ‘n Roses, Art of Anarchy], Derek Sherinian [Billy Idol, Dream Theater, Black Country Communion], Jeff Scott Soto [Trans-Siberian Orchestra, Yngwie Malmsteen] and you on bass.

Billy Sheehan: Mike, Derek and I went on tour with [guitarist] Tony MacAlpine several years ago. It was mostly instrumental stuff. It was a lot of fun. At that point, Derek and Mike hadn’t played together since they were in Dream Theater. When they were putting this band together, they called me and asked I was interested in playing bass and I said “sure.” They called Bumblefoot and then Jeff Scott Soto who had gone out with The Winery Dogs doing some support slots. We knew that Jeff could sing but getting a chance to hear him again reminded us of just how great he really is. The record is done. We kept things very quiet. No one knew we were doing it. The album is ready for release and we’ll be doing some shows in 2018 to support it. I can’t wait for you to hear it. It’s very heavy.

Sleaze Roxx: So is Sons of Apollo an “one and done” kind of thing or will there be more albums?

Billy Sheehan: [Pause] Well, why wouldn’t we do another record? I see this no different as to doing a new Mr. Big record or a new [The] Winery Dogs record. It’s a band. Of course, we’ll do another record.

Sleaze Roxx: Which are we most likely to see from Billy Sheehan, an adult beverage, an autobiography or a documentary?

Billy Sheehan: The autobiography would be the one that would most likely happen…though an adult beverage wouldn’t be bad [laughs]! I do like a fine wine, but I do like a good beer too. It would be too hard for me to modify a wine…

Sleaze Roxx: And for the record, The Winery Dogs aren’t done, correct?

Billy Sheehan: That’s right. We’re doing our own thing and stepping away from it for a little bit. We want to get back together and have great stories to tell from our time away and we want to make a ‘righteous’ third record. I promise you Ruben, it will be worth the wait.

Read more at Sleaze Roxx.


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Iconic Los Angeles rock band Motley Crue celebrates the thirtieth anniversary of its fourth studio and four-times-platinum album, Girls, Girls, Girls, with special album reissue bundles that will be available on August 25th through Pledge Music. Fans can get a jump start on owning the exclusive merchandise today by pre-ordering bundles exclusively at Pledge Music. Various bundles will include, colored vinyl, cassette tape, commemorative poster/lithograph, vintage t-shirt, vinyl test pressings, a limited-edition, numbered drum head, a flexi single of Wild Side, Girls, Girls, Girls” patch, and more. The band recently celebrated the thirtieth anniversary on the album’s actual release date – May 15th — with the announcement of the August 25th reissue.

Motley Crue paved the way for rock bands to push the envelope since the band’s inception and their music, as well as their antics, provided them a successful thirty-six-year career as a leading force in rock around the world. 1987’s Girls, Girls, Girls included three smash hits, Wild Side, You’re All I Need and the title track, which became a global success, despite the original uncensored video being banned from MTV at the time.

Motley Crue bassist Nikki Sixx says, “It’s hard to believe Girls, Girls, Girls already turned thirty this year. We went against the grain with this album when it first came out in 1987. The music and lyrics reflect what was going on in the streets of Los Angeles at that time.

A big thank you to all the fans who have made the album stand the test of time. It’s really cool to now see a new generation of fans exploring and digging Girls, Girls, Girls‘ three decades later.”

A new trailer for the Girls Girls Girls special deluxe edition can be seen below.

A product of the ’80s Hollywood Sunset Strip, Motley Crue was the quintessential L.A. hair metal band. Their string of hit albums and crossover songs on radio and MTV was only matched by their over-the-top live show, mounting legal bills, and alarming drug use. By 1987, the band was dancing on a fine line between real life or death. Sixx told the “In The Studio” show what he remembered about the Billboard No. 2-charting album. “We were a mess,” he said. “I know we didn’t go overseas, because the management said, ‘You guys go, and somebody’s not coming back. Or if they do, they’re coming back in a body bag… We were operating like a punk band! We were completely out of control.”

Motley Crue’s last studio album was 2008’s Saints Of Los Angeles, which was followed by a 2009 Greatest Hits compilation.

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Belleville News Democrat reports:

Plenty of people are pumped to see Ozzy Osbourne “bark at the moon” at a festival in Southern Illinois during the total solar eclipse, but a handful of eclipse purists think the rocker and his fans aren’t giving proper reverence to the astronomical phenomenon.

Osbourne plans to sing his 1983 hit “Bark at the Moon” during eclipse totality at 1:20 p.m. on August 21st at Walker’s Bluff winery in Carterville, Illinois, a small town about 120 miles southeast of St. Louis. Walker’s Bluff is set to hold the four-day Moonstock festival, where the 68-year-old rock star and other bands will perform.

Not only is the Carterville area in the path of this year’s solar eclipse, but it’s in line for another one in 2024. A total eclipse hasn’t been visible in the United States mainland since 1979. The last time the Carterville area saw a total eclipse was in 1442.

“That’s how rare they are,” said Joe McFarland, who runs a small eclipse shop near Carterville. “And to have two pass over the same spot over seven years is just an amazing gift from the heavens…”

…“One of the biggest mistakes being made locally is the winery is having a big music festival prior to the eclipse, and then, at the moment of totality, Ozzy Osbourne is going to take to the stage and play Bark at the Moon,” McFarland said.

But Matthew Hayes, a member of local band called A Stellar Goodbye, sees it differently. He said the concert is going to be “a very memorable event, I am sure.” His band, from a nearby town called Benton, is going to play a set at Moonstock.

“I think it comes down to personal choice,” Hayes said. “I, for one, love that I get to spend it at a historic event like Moonstock.”

McFarland isn’t the only one upset about Osbourne playing during eclipse totality. One amateur astronomy group said Osbourne may “learn that there is something bigger than his ego” in the face of the eclipse.

“I can’t imagine such hubris, that a performer would regard the most amazing spectacle on Planet Earth, God’s greatest wonder in the sky, as a stage prop for his show,” the Classical Astronomy group posted on its Facebook page. “As totality commences, I can only imagine that his fans will (be) more transfixed on the celestial darkness than on the self-styled Prince of Darkness…”

…Osbourne’s publicist and a Moonstock organizer did not return emails seeking comment.

In conjunction with the Moonstock event, the winery is selling bottles of Ozzy Osbourne Solar Red Wine, at $50 each. A collector’s edition bottle of the wine, at $500, includes includes a photo of Osbourne signing the bottle labels. It comes in a tiny, black, coffin “hand-crafted from poplar hardwood and lines with black satin pillows.”

Read more at the Belleville News Democrat.


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