"If we're going to have heavy metal, that's the kind of heavy metal I want to have."Def Leppard are an English rock band formed in 1977 in Sheffield as part of the New Wave of British Heavy Metal movement. Since 1992, the band have consisted of Rick Savage (bass, backing vocals), Joe Elliott (lead vocals), Rick Allen (drums, backing vocals), Phil Collen (guitar, backing vocals), and Vivian Campbell (guitar, backing vocals). As one of the world's best-selling music artists, Def Leppard have sold more than 100 million albums worldwide ... (read more at Wikipedia)
(John Peel, 05 February 1980)
Links to Peel
On his 06 May 1999 show, Peel discussed an email request for a Def Leppard track with David Gedge:
JP: I was the first person ever to play Def Leppard on the radio. Did you know that? It's an impressive statistic.
DG: What year was that then?
JP: Now that's unfair ... I have absolutely no idea at all!
From available show tracklistings, it appears that the Peel first played the band's debut Def Leppard EP in April 1979.
In a March 1993 interview with Alan Freeman, singer Joe Elliot recalled giving the EP to Peel and the effect on the band's career:
John Peel was doing a disco at Sheffield University and I jumped up on stage and said, 'Play this!' And he said, 'Well, I can't play it now but write your phone number on it.' The next day he phoned me. He said, 'I'm going to play it tonight' ... And that helped us a lot, because the BBC played it, the local radios in Sheffield played it and we got a few shops in Sheffield to sell it for us free of charge and we sold it whenever we did concerts. And it just started the ball rolling.
Peel also played tracks from the band's initial major label releases.
Festive Fifty Entries
Other Shows Played
- 02 April 1979: Getcha Rocks Off (EP - The Def Leppard EP) Bludgeon Riffola
- 12 April 1979: The Overture (EP - The Def Leppard EP) Bludgeon Riffola
- 04 June 1979: (JP: "When we first played the EP by Sheffield's teenage heavy metal boys Def Leppard there was apparently a lot of interest in it, so here's the major track from it again.") The Overture (EP - The Def Leppard EP) Bludgeon Riffola
- 18 June 1979: (JP giving a rundown of the next day's Radio 1 delights): “At 8 o'clock Andy Peebles of course, featuring Supercharge, Eddie & The Hot Rods, and from Sheffield Def Leppard, whose record you may have heard on these programmes once or twice, and not played, as it said in Sounds last week, reluctantly either. Was it reluctantly? Some such word, anyway.”)
- 31 October 1979: Wasted (7") Vertigo
- 05 February 1980: Good Morning Freedom (b/w Hello America) Vertigo (JP: “If we're going to have heavy metal, that's the kind of heavy metal I want to have.”)
- 20 March 1980: Satellite (LP - On Through The Night) Vertigo
- 26 March 1980: It Don't Matter (LP - On Through The Night) Vertigo
- 31 March 1980: WhenThe Walls Come Tumbling Down (LP - On Through The Night) Vertigo
- 09 April 1980: Rocks Off (LP – On Through The Night) Vertigo