I stumbled across this book at a store called 2nd & Charles. They sell used books, games, cds, vinyl, you name it. I was browsing the book section, in the music section of course, and stumbled across this beauty. As you know, Def Leppard is one of my favorite bands and I will grab anything I can find by them or about them. And this was write up my alley because it is a picture books and few words because me no like words, reading bad!! Picture books are more my speed.
This particular book is called ‘Def Leppard: The Definitive Visual History’ and all the photographs were taken by the legendary rock photographer, Ross Halfin. Ross has photographed Def Leppard literally since the band started way back in the late 70’s. He is the only photographer to be there basically for every step of the way. This book is a beautiful chronological story of Def Leppard told in photos. And if a photo can speak 1,000 words than this books has millions of words.
Now, there are some words in here. Joe Elliott writes the foreword in the book and each member actually takes time to write a little something about Ross and the book. Also, from time-to-time, the band members might right a few words about a picture. But don’t worry, there aren’t a lot of words so all good.
For me, it was a joy to see the early pictures of Def Leppard with Pete Willis and Rick Allen looking like he was just out of diapers. The pictures are broken up between each album period of the band so you get to see the evolution of the band, the change in members (very few of those), the change in fashion and most importantly the change in hair styles. It is all there in living color and some black & white.
There are some great shots of Steve and you can read the trouble in his face. He had a lot of demons, but you can see the one thing he loved was Def Leppard and playing guitar…and drinking and smoking. Actually, there are a lot of great pictures of every band member whether in the group or solo shots. Ross has taken 1,000’s upon 1,000’s of pictures and I can’t post them all as I would probably get sued, but I hope I’ll be okay to post a few so you can get an idea of what you are missing.
The band pictures are the best as to see them change over the years…here are a few…the band so young..crazy!
In their prime years…
And a little more recent…Vegas baby!!
Ross filmed them from every angle. From the pits at the shows, to the side stages, to even up in the rafters during the In The Round tours. Ross seen them from every angle. And no one can capture a band like Ross can.
One of the most fun things is to see the transformation of Mr. Phil Collen. He goes from having very long hair and wearing shirts, to no hair and not wearing a shirt. There truly is an evolution you can watch as time goes by but it is the same with every member. It was sort of like walking through my childhood again because each record for Leppard was a different point in my life and they were always there along the way.
The book’s photos are super glossy, the book is sturdy and well put together. The images are striking, informative and sometimes a whole lot of fun to see. Ross has put together a solid book that is worth every penny for Def Leppard diehard fans or for people who don’t even like to read…remember, few words. I will try to keep to the few words bit and end it here. I will give this a 5.0 out of 5.0 Stars for Def Leppard Fans. It is visually stunning.
Oh yeah, when you pull off the book jacket…you still get Def Leppard…