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Def Leppard Tour History Fan Archive.
Rick Allen On How He Returned To Drum With Def Leppard (2012 Interview)

Thursday, 2nd June 2016

Def Leppard 2016.
Pic by Chele Drappel

Def Leppard drummer Rick Allen was interviewed about his artwork/drumming in June 2012 and the audio has been reposted online.

Rick talked about how he started his artwork, his first art collection "Electric Hand: Rhythm + Change", how his performances were captured as art, his own favourite artists, how technology has affected his life, using foot pedals and the start of his electronic drum kit, how much of his current kit is acoustic or electronic, the Raven Drum Foundation, the Resiliency Radio show, his memories of starting out with the band and the future plans of Def Leppard (in 2012).

The interview with Sock Monkey Sound was originally posted on their website in June 2012.

It has now been reposted on this week.

Rick's part starts within the first two minutes and last for 25 minutes.

The original news story from this interview featured Rick talking about the then upcoming 2012 Rock Of Ages tour with Poison.

Sock Monkey Sound 2012 - Rick Allen Interview Quotes

How has technology has affected your life?/His First Electronic Drum Kit

"I think that without technology I wouldn't have been able to continue drumming the way that I have. I remember just before Phil and Steve came to visit me in the hospital many moons ago. Like 1985, early '85. I started listening to all the music that inspired me and I realised that I could. I could play all those rhythms with my feet and hold down a pretty solid groove. And my friend, he saw me and he just happened to be involved with his own electronics business. And he said 'You know what?. I can make you foot pedals'. And that's exactly what he did."

"And from that point on Simmons got involved. They built me a really nice kit and I slowly but surely progressed through all these different electronic sort of drum units. And now you know I literally use a really souped up computer using the latest Intel CPU and you know it's nothing short of miraculous that I can use technology to be able to express myself the way that I do."

Electronic Versus Acoustic Drums

"Well it's interesting. I move back and forth. If I'm working in the studio and I'm trying to create certain textures. I seem to gravitate towards the acoustic drum setup. And then when I'm out on tour with Def Leppard, it's more like a Formula One car. You know you just want it to be really fast and to the point. And you know to be able to compete with very, very loud guitars and vocals and bass. So I tend to lean more towards a software based sampler and then I play an acoustic kick drum. An acoustic snare drum and acoustic cymbals. And that seems to work really well."

"But the acoustic drum setup is never too far away because that was what ignited my passion when I was I was a kid you know. So I always seem to go back to the physicality of playing acoustic drums and the sound and feel. So you know it's never too far away."

"I think that's why it's important to keep some element of the acoustic drums in there because you know I need something to get my teeth into. But having said that, the mesh pads these days are very - they're really, I think they represent the feel of a bigger drum and the give. Really the feel of a bigger drum quite well."

Old Electronic Rubber Pads

"Oh my god that was so painful at times. The old Simmons pads, yeah."

Being In The Zone

"I call it the zone. And you know people always say to me, 'Well shouldn't you be getting yourself pumped up for the show?'. Or whatever and I'm like. That's the last thing I need. I need to relax as much as I possibly can."

Sounds like therapy

"Yeah it is and really just playing and not necessarily thinking about it. Playing from your heart. And I think that's one of the reasons why all this wonderful imagery came out of that, is because really my intentions were really good."

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