Was Def Leppard Cursed? The Tragic Events That Haunted Joe Elliott, Rick Allen, Phil Collen, And Steve Clark


Def Leppard is one of the most popular bands in rock history and was a prominent member of the new wave of the British heavy metal movement. The band wrote and composed best-selling albums and hit charts, which brought great fame to its members.

However, along with their successful career as Def Leppard members, they have been haunted by tragic events, including divorces, addictions, terrible accidents, and an unexpected death. Therefore, their fans started to believe that the band was cursed, and their fourth studio album entitled ‘Hysteria’ was the beginning of all these tragedies.

Almost Every Def Leppard Member Went Through Great Tragedies


During the production process of ‘Hysteria,’ several bad things happened to band members to prevent them from releasing the album. Def Leppard drummer Rick Allen lost control of his car while traveling with his then-girlfriend Miriam Barendsen on December 31, 1984. After this terrible car accident, Allen’s left arm was amputated, but he didn’t give up and continued his career as a drummer.

Then, the band’s producer Mutt Lange was also involved in a car accident but survived with a few injuries on his leg. In addition to these accidents, Def Leppard lead singer Joe Elliott was diagnosed with mumps, which is a viral disease. Despite all these obstacles, the band was able to release ‘Hysteria’ on August 3, 1987, but the curse didn’t end.

Before the release of ‘Adrenalize’ in 1992, Def Leppard lead guitarist Steve Clark passed away due to alcohol poisoning on January 8, 1991. Then, Rick Allen was arrested due to domestic violence, and the couple got separated. Along with Allen, his bandmates Joe Elliot and Phil Collen also got divorced from their wives within the same year while working on ‘Slang.’

Phil Collen said in his interview that:

“So we don’t really see ourselves as being cursed, especially when you spread it out over a 15- or 16-year period.”

Joe Elliott added:

“Is there a curse? Jon Bon Jovi is convinced of it. He won’t travel in a car with me!

There have been way more good things happen than bad things happen, but when bad things happen they’re just astonishingly massive bad things. Death happens, limbs flying off doesn’t.”

Consequently, it seems that even though almost every Def Leppard member has suffered from tragic events, they don’t think that they are cursed. Most of them regard it as normal things that can happen to every human being. So, no matter what happened, Def Leppard members continued to produce and create music, and apparently, nothing will stop them.