Def Leppard: “Rock of Ages”

ALBUM: Pyromania

YEAR: 1983

WRITERS: Joe Elliott, Steve Clark, Mutt Lange

Peaked at number-16 on the¬†Billboard Hot 100, but topped the magazine’s¬†Top Rock Tracks chart.

The story goes that Def Leppard got the title “Rock of Ages” off a hymnal left in the studio by a choir that had been recording there. Guitarist Phil Collen, who replaced Pete Willis midway through the sessions for Pyromania, says he wasn’t there when it happened, but he’s heard that it’s true. “I missed it. I was still in Girl and actually went down and borrowed an amp off of Steve, I think. And I lent them one of my Marshalls, which is ironic because this is before I joined the band. So I came back and actually brought my amp back. But they saw the title in there and, you know, things inspire things.”

Original Def Leppard guitarist Pete Willis, who was fired during the making of Pyromania, celebrates his 57th birthday today (February 16th).


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