Joe Elliott Recalls Kidnapping Phil Collen To Perform With Brian May And Roger Taylor
In a new episode of 95.5 Klos’s New&Approved, Def Leppard singer Joe Elliott remembered the time when he almost kidnapped Phil Collen to perform on Freddie Mercury’s tribute show with Brian May and Roger Taylor.
Most recently, Def Leppard released a new limited edition box set named ‘Def Leppard – Volume Three’ on June 11, 2021. It appears as the third of four volumes of the band’s complete recorded works, containing all the recordings in the 2000s and featuring the original packaging. Until the box set’s release, ‘X,’ ‘Yeah!’ and ‘Songs From The Sparkle Lounge’ weren’t available on vinyl before.
Speaking to 95.5 Klos’s New&Approved, Def Leppard’s Joe Elliot mentioned his best four minutes of his life on stage with the Queen members performing ‘All The Young Dudes,’ recalling the time when he hardly convinced Phil Collen to perform at Freddie Mercury’s tribute concert with Brian May and Roger Taylor. He said that at that time May asked him to get up on the stage and do the backing vocals, and he eagerly accepted it.
Elliot then remembered grabbing Phil Collen, who was a little reluctant at first, and convincing him by telling him that he will regret it for the rest of his life if he does not do this. He described the moment as if he ‘kidnapped’ Phil Collen, dragging him with himself. Elliot then said that the pair performed with Brian May on the stage, which was a magical moment that cannot be replicated according to him, describing that four minutes as a cherry on top of an immense cake.
“With the greatest of respect to everything that this band has done, it has to be one of the best three or four minutes of my life on stage — was getting up to do that number, for various different reasons. We were celebrating the life and times of Freddie Mercury, bringing AIDS awareness to the world. We were No. 1 all over the world with ‘Adrenalize’ and ‘Let’s Get Rocked’ at the time of that concert.
And so many of our musical heroes were there. Obviously, the remaining members of Queen … You’re looking at, as I said, the remaining members of Queen with Mick Ronson on guitar, David Bowie playing the sax, and Ian Hunter singing. It was one of those moments where Brian said, ‘You’re gonna get up and do the backing vocals?’ And I said, ‘You try stopping me.’ And I remember I grabbed Phil. Phil was a little reluctant at first. I said, ‘If you don’t do this, you’re gonna regret this for the rest of your life.’ And I almost kind of kidnapped him, dragged him on with me.
So the two of us were shadowing on either side of Brian May and singing with this guy that had become a lifelong friend of ours a decade earlier anyway. And it was just a magical moment; it can’t be replicated. I can do some amazing things from now till the day that we don’t do this anymore, and we have done some amazing things starting back in 1979. But that four minutes was the cherry on top of an immense cake. It was just phenomenal. Even now thinking about it, the hairs on my arms are getting all weird.”
As for a piece of additional information, Joe Elliot has announced lately there are plans for a 40th-anniversary re-release of the album ‘Hysteria’ in the distant future, roughly in 2027. The Stadium Tour featuring Mötley Crüe and Def Leppard has officially been postponed to 2022 as well due to the pandemic.