SOURCE: Kerrang! magazine. Words by Paul Elliott. Colour photo by Ross Halfin


TEAMIN’ THEY called him. Steve Clark was one hell of a guitar player. Def Leppard fans remember him as a lanky figure with a mass of flailing blond hair, shirtless in white waistcoat and skin tight white jeans, scarf loose around his neck, guitar slung low, knocking out blistering hard rock riffs with an effortless swagger. The epitome of rock ‘n’ roll cool.

Steve had achieved every teenage rocker’s dream. The band he started in Sheffield with a bunch of school friends became the biggest rock act in the world. On Leppard’s second album, High ‘n’ Dry, released in 1981, ‘Steamin’ was at his peak; witness the high-energy riffing of Let It Go, or the powerful instrumental Switch 625.

It was 1983’s Pyromania and 1987’s Hysteria that transformed Def Leppard into superstars. The guitarist became a millionaire, but the money, fame and glamour meant nothing to him.