On Tour: Def Leppard

The band’s sophomore release Pyromania cemented Def Leppard’s name in the annals of rock history forever.


w/special guests REO Speedwagon & Tesla

This summer may be slowly drawing to a close, but rock ‘n’ roll knows no season. One hot ticket this year is Def Leppard, with special guests REO Speedwagon and Tesla. This is one great lineup, and promises to be a spectacular show.

Opening the evening’s festivities are Sacramento, Calif., heavy hitters Tesla. With 15 million records sold in the U.S., Tesla brings its brand of blues-based rock to another level. Their most recent album, Simplicity, takes the band back to basics: no digital recording, no fancy computers—just the band and the instruments they play so well. On tracks like “Little Suzy” and first single “Modern Day Cowboy,” Tesla proves its talents and their timelessness. Written off by some as simply a “hair metal” band, the real fans know the truth. Tesla is a stunning live act.

After over 40 years in the music industry, the legendary REO Speedwagon brings its pop-laced hits to the stage once again. Lead vocalist Kevin Cronin and his mates have sold over 40 million albums worldwide. They are best known for their 1980s hits, such as “Can’t Fight This Feeling,” “Keep on Loving You,” and “That Ain’t Love.” Yet they have a rich past, getting their start in Illinois in 1967. Their swan song came in the form of their 1980 release, Hi-Infidelity. Spawning four Top Ten hits, the album was massive. Altogether, the band enjoyed 13 Top 40 singles in the U.S.—but live, the Speedwagon rock much harder than on some of their albums. This is one band that has never lost power as a live act.

Headlining this tour is the iconic British band Def Leppard. This band has suffered many trials and tribulations, and nothing has ever been able to stop them. They would be rock stars. That fact was apparent when their second album, High and Dry, was released in 1981.Hard rock fans could not get enough of these young guys who were hungry for success. Combining their hard rock sound, the distinctive vocals of Joe Elliot, along with their lack of anything anyone would call “glam,” they played straight-on, honest rock ’n’ roll—and the masses loved it. The band’s sophomore release Pyromania cemented Def Leppard’s name in the annals of rock history forever.

With hot tracks like “Foolin’,” “Photograph,” and the über popular rock anthem “Rock of Ages” Def Leppard proved themselves to be British bad boys. It took the band five years to record their follow-up LP, Hysteria, which blew the roof off the pop-metal world. Now, the band is touring behind its latest effort, simply called Def Leppard. They are the undisputed kings of their genre, and are still able to bring in fans by the thousands when they tour. | Marc Farr

See all three bands at St. Louis’s Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre on August 27; more tour dates below. Tickets are available through www.ticketmaster.com, or via the artists’ websites.

08.19 | Austin360 Amphitheater, Austin
08.20 | Smoothie King Center, New Orleans
08.22 | The Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion, The Woodlands, TX
08.24 | Gexa Energy Pavilion, Dallas
08.26 | Sprint Center, Kansas City
08.27 | Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre, St. Louis
08.29 | Blossom Music Center, Cuyahoga Falls, OH
08.31 | Darien Lake Performing Arts Center, Darien, NY
09.14 | Rimrock Auto Arena at MetraPark, Billings, MT
09.16 | Usana Amphitheatre, Salt Lake City
09.17 | Pepsi Center, Denver
09.19 | Isleta Amphitheater, Albuquerque
09.20 | Ak-Chin Pavilion, Phoenix
09.22 | Irvine Meadows Amphitheatre, Irvine, CA
09.24 | Toyota Amphitheatre, Wheatland, CA
09.25 | Shoreline Amphitheatre, Mountain View, CA
09.28 | Taco Bell Arena, Boise, ID
09.30 | Matthew Knight Arena, Eugene, OR
10.01 | Tacoma Dome, Tacoma, WA
10.04 | CenturyLink Center, Omaha
10.05 | Xcel Energy Center, Saint Paul, MN
10.07 | La Crosse Center Arena, La Crosse, WI
10.08 | Huntington Center, Toledo, OH
10.10 | U.S. Cellular Center, Cedar Rapids, IA

About Marc Farr 202 Articles
Marc Farr is the Live Music & Assignments Editor of PLAYBACK:stl. He's so invaluable to us, we've nicknamed him Mr. Music. Reach out if you have coverage ideas! "I know it's only rock and roll...but I like it!"
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