Def Leppard release trailer for ‘London to Vegas’ boxset
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Rick Allen is a drummer different from many others, as he only has one arm. Despite this, he has overcome his disability and turned it into a strength, making some of the best music on the rock scene. However, does the talented drummer also have a talent for songwriting, and who is the main songwriter for Def Leppard?
As is the case with most bands, it seems there is an element of the group working together to write songs, though many fans would suggest frontman Joe Elliott is the key cog in the machine.
Speaking about songwriting in 2015 with radio host Phil de Fer, Joe said: “Everybody in this band is very, very capable of writing songs…
“We’re very different people that when we get together, we’re Def Leppard.
“But when we’re individuals Phil Collen is different to me and I’m different to Sav and different to Vivian and different to Rick Allen.
Def Leppard – who writes the songs? (Image: Getty)
“But when we come together as a team it works – when we bring our individual ideas to the band.
“They’re gonna be vastly different to anything we wrote as a team. So you do get that variety.”
Joe spoke of how different groupings of writers collaborated on different songs, though his name was regularly mentioned in the credits, as well as the band’s guitarist Phil Collen.
He continued: “You know we just mixed it up, we wanted it to have our stamp of quality. But we didn’t want every song to sound identical…
“What we do is more akin to a band like Queen where you’ve got that variety of being able to write a song like Tie Your Mother Down or Now I’m Here.
Rick Allen performing on stage (Image: Getty)
Def Leppard (Image: Getty)
“And then have things like Love Of My Life or Bohemian Rhapsody which are totally different you know.
“Musically we wanted to lean towards Queen but with the power of a band like AC/DC when we were doing the rockers.”
In an interview with Songfacts, Joe specifically named what each band member brings to the table, including Rick.
He said: “Everything I’ve ever listened to seeps in.
Joe Elliott (Image: Getty)
“So when it comes to Leppard, you might hear the odd little tiny bit of me that’s leaked in from Mott, but it’s more likely to have just leaked in from everything that I’ve listened to.
“And that’s just 20 percent of what Leppard do.
“Because Phil will bring in his influences, which are more Ritchie Blackmore, Jimi Hendrix, and sound very much like Queen and Boston and stuff like that.
“And Vivian [Campbell – guitar] comes from a totally different area.
“And Rick [Allen – drums] is very much Slade, Deep Purple, because of the drumming and stuff like that.”