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Def Leppard and Poison at Jones Beach

Joe Elliott performs with the band Def Leppard

Joe Elliott performs with the band Def Leppard at the after party for the "Rock of Ages" premiere in Los Angeles. The band re-recorded two of their songs that appear in the film, and they're teaming up with Poison and Lita Ford for a summer tour. (June 8, 2012) Credit: AP

THE LOWDOWN

Def Leppard and Poison have their songs sung by Tom Cruise in the musical film "Rock of Ages," which this tour is named after. The bands aren't supporting new material, but rather making their annual summer trek playing their catalog hits.

 

HOW IT ALL BEGAN

Hailing from Sheffield, England, Def Leppard earned its stripes in the '80s with two back-to-back blockbuster albums, "Pyromania" (1983) and "Hysteria" (1987), both produced by Robert John "Mutt" Lange. The band, featuring vocalist Joe Elliott, guitarists Phil Collen and Steve Clark, bassist Rick Savage and drummer Rick Allen, racked up a trough of hit singles ("Pour Some Sugar on Me," "Photograph," "Animal," "Foolin' ") and sold more than 100 million albums worldwide in the process.

Def Leppard overcame extreme adversity when Allen lost his arm in a drunk-driving auto accident in 1984 and Clark died of a drug overdose in 1991. Today, Allen plays a specialized electronic kit with his one arm and two legs, and guitarist Vivan Campbell replaced Clark in 1992.

Poison rose out of Los Angeles' Sunset Strip glam metal scene when "Talk Dirty to Me" and "Nothin' But a Good Time" became instant party anthems for the '80s. But it was the No. 1 single "Every Rose Has Its Thorn" that made this California foursome, consisting of vocalist Bret Michaels, guitarist C.C. DeVille, bassist Bobby Dall and drummer Rikki Rockett, a household name.

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SPECIAL GUEST

Lita Ford, the original queen of hard rock, returns to the spotlight with a new album, "Living Like a Runaway," which lyrically traces her life from when she was in the Runaways with Joan Jett to present day. Show up early to catch her delivering hits "Kiss Me Deadly," "Close My Eyes Forever" and a wicked cover of Elton John's "The Bitch Is Back."

 

WHO Def Leppard and Poison, with special guest Lita Ford

WHEN | WHERE 7 tonight at Nikon at Jones Beach Theater

INFO $24.75-$155; 800-745-3000, livenation.com

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