DEF LEPPARD's CAMPBELL: PHIL COLLEN And I Are 'Not Afraid Of Taking Our Shirts Off'

Belinda McCammon of the New Zealand Press Association recently conducted an interview with DEF LEPPARD guitarist Vivian Campbell. A few excerpts from the chat follow:

On how DEF LEPPARD works with egos and differences of opinions put aside:

"We understand the music is more important than us and there is strength in our unity. We don't always get along and some get on better than others but we make it work and we go out of our way to make it work. We take our work very seriously but not ourselves."

On his belief that DEF LEPPARD still has something worth offering audiences despite a music industry which is changing at a rapid pace:

"We've achieved some serious milestones. No band again will sell 15 or 16 million copies of one album, which DEF LEPPARD did with 'Hysteria' because I don't think the record industry exists like that anymore. We are always wanting to make more music. A lot of bands from our era that are still together with or without the original lineup are touring mostly on their catalogues."

On wanting to to reach a younger audience:

"There are an increasing number of younger people in the audience who know all the words to the songs, not just the big hits but also some of their more obscure songs. You know they have our catalogue on their iPod chances are they haven't paid for it but the upside of music piracy is that it's turning on a whole new generation of fans to the band."

On whether DEF LEPPARD's style can hold it's own against other genres, especially hip hop which dominates the American charts:

"Hip hop doesn't transfer to the live arena at all, its studio crafted music. We play really well and we sing really well. A compliment we get all the time, a backhanded one, is whether we are sampling our vocals. Absolutely not. For a hard rock band we have incredibly strong vocals. We're a very dynamic live act and because we've been touring more we're getting better."

On his description of DEF LEPPARD as "part Chippendales, part rock band".

"I'm the fittest I've ever been in my life, we've been working hardcore with a trainer for the last couple of years. We actually take him on the road with us, we're very serious. Phil [Collen] and I are not afraid of going out there and taking our shirts off. I would not want to go on the stage feeling fat because the world doesn't really like overweight rockstars."

Read the entire interview from New Zealand Press Association.

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