JOE ELLIOTT Says DEF LEPPARD 'Did Not See Any Real Money Until 1988'

JOE ELLIOTT Says DEF LEPPARD 'Did Not See Any Real Money Until 1988'

In a brand new interview with U.K.'s This Is Money, DEF LEPPARD singer Joe Elliott was asked if he has ever been paid silly money. "No," he responded. "Once the band became successful, there was a lot of money going through the system. It was never like winning the lottery, though. It was fair and reasonable for what we, as a band, put in.

"We did not see a great deal of money until the autumn of 1983 when we got a check for the 'Pyromania' album and tour," he continued. "By then, even though we had sold six million records, we had a seven-year debt with the record label to clear. Of course, when we did get that check, it was the biggest I had ever seen. I cannot remember exactly how much it was for but it was more than £20,000 — the equivalent of £65,000 today. But because of our debts, we did not see any real money until 1988 when 'Hysteria' shifted 12 million copies worldwide."

Elliott went on to say that he does not invest in the stock market, calling it "a roulette wheel I do not want to play. I would rather buy a house and rent it out," he said. "I prefer bricks and mortar. I do have a pension. When we signed our first record deal when I was 18, we had a lawyer who made sure we started a pension that same day. We had our feet up on the boardroom table, drinking whisky, smoking cigars and I remember saying: 'What, a pension? Hang on, we are not even 20 years old.' Personally, I forgot all about it until told I could take it out at 55. But I have not touched it because I do not need it."

Asked what the best year of his financial life was, Elliott said: "Possibly 1998, maybe 1992 when we released 'Adrenalize', but, actually, I expect it will be last year. We did 50 shows in the United States and blasted through Japan, Australia and New Zealand — all sell-outs. I am not going to brag about how much I earned last year, but I am not penniless."

DEF LEPPARD and JOURNEY's 2018 North American co-headline tour grossed $97.1 million from 1,003,198 tickets sold, according to figures reported to Billboard Boxscore. The trek included 56 dates across the United States, plus two shows in Canada.


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