DEF LEPPARD Guitarist VIVIAN CAMPBELL Reflects On His Time In WHITESNAKE – “I Don’t Think We Were That Great A Band Compared To Some Of The Great Bands I’ve Been In”

Def Leppard begins a UK co-headlining tour with Whitesnake Sunday, December 6th with Black Star Riders also in tow. Chronicle Live caught up with Def Leppard guitarist Vivian Campbell to talk about the upcoming tour and how he used to be in both the other bands (Thin Lizzy, before they changed their name to Black Star Riders) and reflects on his time in Whitesnake.

Campbell only toured with Whitesnake and never recorded with them, Campbell had this to say when asked if he regretted not making an album with the band: 

“Not really. I don’t really think of Whitesnake as being part of my career because I never got to write any new songs with them. I was with them just under two years for one very, very long tour. We went in to start making a new record but things didn’t work out for one reason or another. David basically said he just wanted to write with Adrian Vandenberg as they had a good partnership going and that was fair enough, it was his band and his prerogative. At the same time Adrian didn’t want me in the band. It was nothing personal he didn’t want any other guitar player there, he wanted to be a solo guitar player in Whitesnake. It was a very uncomfortable situation along with the fact that my ex-wife and Tawny Kitaen, David’s wife at the time, just didn’t get on at all so that added to the drama. David and I just decided to part ways. I also don’t think we werethat great a band compared to some of the great bands I’ve been in.”

On why that lineup of Whitesnake didn’t work out:

“That line up of Whitesnake never really gelled musically and I think that’s because we met on the set of a video and the first thing we did was the ‘Still Of The Night’ video. The second thing we did was the ‘Here I Go Again’ video and then we did the ‘Is This Love’ video and then we went into rehearse. We literally rehearsed for 48 hours and went out on tour. For me it was just an image based band because of MTV and none of us had played on the record so there was no chemistry unlike in Dio where the chemistry was unmistakable. When I played with Jimmy and Vinny in Dio we were really tight together but in Whitesnake it felt like five guys each doing their own thing. On paper the pedigree was amazing with Tommy Aldridge, Adrian Vandenberg and Rudy Sarzo. We were all great individually but that line up with those musicians never really gelled. It was fun at the time and I was flattered to have been invited to be a part of the band but it doesn’t mean an awful lot to me from a musical point of view.”

Follow Def Leppard’s live schedule at

Def Leppard’s new self-titled studio album (Mailboat Records) debuted at #1 on Billboard’s Top Rock Albums and Top Independent Albums charts. The album also took the #5 spot on Billboard’s Top Current Albums, #10 spot on the Top 200 and #9 on the Overall Digital Album Sales chart, as well as claiming 15 top 10 debuts around the world.

Def Leppard was recorded earlier this year at frontman Joe Elliott’s studio in Dublin, Ireland. The release features 14 tracks in total and marks their first new collection of material in seven years.

Def Leppard tracklisting:
“Let’s Go”
“Man Enough”
“We Belong”
“Sea Of Love”
“All Time High”
“Battle Of My Own”
“Broke ‘N’ Brokenhearted”
“Forever Young”
“Last Dance”
“Wings Of An Angel”
“Blind Faith”

Bonus tracks:
“Last Dance” (Demo) (Japan)
“We Belong” (Alternative Vocal Take) (Classic Rock Fanpack)

“Let’s Go” (UK radio edit) (Classic Rock Fanpack)

Album promo:

“Let’s Go” video:


Def Leppard’s Hysteria On The High Seas – a four-day, four-night voyage out of Miami this January 21st – 25th, aboard the MSC Divina – recently announced a number of updates as the cruise is on the verge of selling out.

Cruise updates include: the additions of Frank Hannon (long-time Tesla guitarist) plus KIX; complimentary “on tour” photo with Def Leppard for all cruisers; Rick Allen’s Art Exhibit aboard the ship; exclusive unveiling of Def Leppard’s own craft beer; and two new payment options. For booking and more information, head to this location.

One of the greatest rock bands of all time and heralded as an institution in both the music and touring industry, Def Leppard will bring their spectacular live shows and arsenal of hits (including tracks off their long-awaited new studio album out this October 30th) aboard the MSC Divina, as Hysteria On The High Seas visits Grand Bahama Island and the private island paradise of Half Moon Cay, Bahamas. In addition, passengers sailing aboard the cruise will receive complimentary admission to an exclusive pre-cruise event on Wednesday, January 20 in Miami, FL, featuring special guest artists and more (details TBA).

This exclusive cruise is a fantasy camp for enthusiasts of Def Leppard, with non-stop entertainment, activities and fun. While this cruise is about all things Def Leppard, the “Hysteria” continues with some of the great names from the 80’s and beyond, with a lineup that includes: Tom Keifer; Last in Line featuring the original line up from Dio’s classic Holy Diver, and Last In Line Records featuring Def Leppard’s Vivian Campbell alongside fellow founding Dio members Vinnie Appice, Jimmy Bain and Claude Schnell, along with vocalist Andrew Freeman; Eric Martin (Mr. Big); Ritchie Kotzen; Kip Winger; and Eddie Trunk and Luc Carl as hosts. Just added to the line-up  Frank Hannon, long-time Tesla guitarist,  Kix – Steve Whiteman (lead vocal), Jimmy Chalfant (drums, vocals), Ronnie Younkins (guitars), Brian Forsythe (guitars) and Mark Schenker (bass) – who just released their highly anticipated and first new album in 19 years. KIX was recently hailed “Best Performers” at both Rocklahoma and M3 Rock Festival, where they played alongside metal heavyweights Sammy Hagar, Alice Cooper, Queensryche and more.

Additional cruise updates announced include:

– The unveiling of a new Def Leppard craft beer that that band is working on; cruisers will have the opportunity to be the first to taste in an optional beer tasting event with the band (for a small fee). Details regarding pricing and ticketing will be announced shortly.

– Each passenger will be assigned to a photo group for their complimentary Def Leppard “On Tour” photo.

– Def Leppard’s drummer – Rick Allen – will bring his visual expression to life with paint, light and canvas with his Rick Allen Art Exhibit aboard the cruise. Each amazing piece that Rick creates has a story and a connection to his life and cruisers will get to enjoy his work up close and personal.

As previously announced, Def Leppard’s “Hysteria On The Seas” fan cruise will include:

– Def Leppard Theater Performance
– Def Leppard “Storytellers” Performance and Q&A
– Def Leppard’s Vivian Campbell in Last in Line Performance
– Eddie Trunk’s “Def Leppard – Behind the Music”
– Daily performances from support artists on four stages throughout the ship
– Support Artist “Storyteller” Performances
– Support Artist Meet & Greets/Photo Ops, Jams and Q&A Sessions
– Special Events, Theme Nights and much more

For more information on the cruise, visit this location.