Former digital sceptic Joe Elliott has revealed how music streaming services like Spotify and Apple Music have helped establish Def Leppard as a “cool legacy band” among young audiences.
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Speaking to Goldmine Magazine in a new interview, the Def Leppard frontman discusses the benefits of going digital and what it means to have the younger generation turning to their music for ‘classic rock.’
“In the past I would have to ring our management and say how many copies has blah, blah, blah sold? “Oh, I’ll get back to you in two weeks” and then have to call somebody, and they’d have to go flicking through a filing cabinet, looking for a sheet of paper,” says Elliott, whose band catalogue only hit music streaming services back in 2018.
“Now you get, “Do you wanna know how many times you were streamed this morning in Venezuela?” We’ve got this instant information.”
He adds that “you now realise that you’re streaming so massively in South America, that you pretty much got the tour booked around where you stream. This was the information that was always guesswork in the past. Now it’s the information highway.”
Recalling the time he watched the Rolling Stones on their ‘89 Steel Wheels tour, Elliott says, “It was great, you know, but as I kind of like to do, people watch, I’m wandering around going, “Look at this lot.” Half the audience weren’t born when Sticky Fingers came out, never mind the first album, you know.”
“And then I see dad, son, grandson, and they’re all singing “Miss You.” You know, 8, 28, 58, and I’m thinking, I really hope this happens to us down the road. Different circumstances; there was no Spotify back then. So that was father to son to grandson sort of thing, you know?”
“But I think Spotify, Apple… it doesn’t matter which streaming service it is, [they] have all helped establish us as a cool legacy band, if you like.”
Elliot also shares that since joining streaming services in 2018, Def Leppard has racked up almost six billion streams, something he describes as “pretty incredible” for the band even if it’s “not Taylor Swift or Adele territory.”
“And these things, again, they inspire you to just walk a little bit taller.”