“Phil Collen of DEF LEPPARD Reflects on Touring with MÖTLEY CRÜE: Different Styles, but a Harmonious Combination”
DEF LEPPARD guitarist Phil Collen recently shared his experience touring with veteran rock act MÖTLEY CRÜE on “The Stadium Tour” last year and the newly launched “The World Tour”. In an interview with Brazilian music journalist Igor Miranda, Collen expressed his familiarity with the members of MÖTLEY CRÜE, having known them since the 1980s and shared numerous experiences with them. He highlighted the similarities between himself and MÖTLEY CRÜE bassist Nikki Sixx, such as both having five children and having birthdays just four days apart in December. According to Collen, these connections fostered a strong camaraderie between the bands.
Collen emphasized that the ability to come out on the other side of their respective challenges and still be alive and thriving was something worth celebrating. He noted that instead of resorting to excesses and reckless behavior, they found joy in being on tour and enjoying each other’s company. Collen believed that the two bands, although representing different styles of rock music, complemented each other, creating a unique experience for the audience. Rather than witnessing two bands with similar styles, the audience was treated to a diverse musical journey. Collen expressed his love for the experience and confirmed that both bands were thoroughly enjoying the tour.
The topic of MÖTLEY CRÜE’s decision to hire John 5 to replace founding guitarist Mick Mars was also discussed. Mars had announced his retirement from touring with MÖTLEY CRÜE due to deteriorating health issues. Collen explained that Mars had been in severe pain and struggled with physical issues. During their American tour together, it became clear that Mars couldn’t continue in his role. Collen praised John 5, acknowledging his talent and character, and expressed gratitude for his contribution in supporting MÖTLEY CRÜE when Mars couldn’t. The addition of John 5 alleviated the challenges the band faced due to Mars’ inability to travel comfortably.
DEF LEPPARD drummer Rick Allen also spoke about Mars’ retirement from touring in a previous interview on the “Appetite For Distortion” podcast. Allen shared that it was Mars’ decision to move on and begin the next phase of his life. He acknowledged the pain Mars had endured throughout his career and the relief he found while performing on stage. Allen emphasized that it was a personal choice made by Mars and highlighted the difficulty of such a decision. He described Mars as a gentle and unassuming soul and expressed empathy for the challenges everyone involved had to face.
In a recent development, Mars filed a lawsuit against MÖTLEY CRÜE in Los Angeles County’s Superior Court. The lawsuit claims that after Mars’ retirement announcement, the other members of the band attempted to remove him as a significant stakeholder in the group’s corporation and business holdings through a shareholders’ meeting. Mars, who suffers from Ankylosing Spondylitis (AS), a chronic and inflammatory form of arthritis, had communicated to the band last summer that he could no longer tour but was open to recording new music or performing at residencies with less travel.
Despite these circumstances, DEF LEPPARD and MÖTLEY CRÜE are set to embark on a U.S. mini-tour with Alice Cooper during the summer. The tour will commence on August 5 in Syracuse, New York, and traverse the Midwest before concluding in El Paso, Texas, on August 18. Prior to the U.S. tour, the bands are currently touring Europe, having commenced their trek on May 22 in Sheffield, United Kingdom.
In summary, Phil Collen of DEF LEPPARD discussed the positive experience of touring with MÖTLEY CRÜE, highlighting their longstanding connection and shared experiences. He emphasized the celebration of life and camaraderie among the bands, and the unique musical blend they offer to the audience. The decision to bring in John 5 to replace Mick Mars was seen as a necessary step due to Mars’ physical limitations. Rick Allen expressed understanding and empathy for Mars’ retirement decision, while praising his character. Despite the legal challenges surrounding Mars’ stake in the band’s business, both DEF LEPPARD and MÖTLEY CRÜE continue their musical endeavors and are eagerly looking forward to their upcoming tours.