Joe Elliott Says He Knew Motley Crue’s Retirement Wouldn’t Last
Motley Crue swore it was farewell, played their final show and said goodbye. When they announced their retirement, the band even famously signed a ‘Cessation of Touring Agreement’ promising it was all over. All the while, fellow rock star Joe Elliott scoffed at the notion.
“I kind of sniggered into my cup of coffee like, ‘Yeah, right,’” the Def Leppard frontman admitted in a conversation with Rolling Stone. “I told Nikki [Sixx] that when he signed it, ‘You guys are just Bowie, Sinatra, Cher, all rolled into one.’ It’s theater. And those guys are theatrical. Contracts are there to be torn up. That’s what they are. People break them all the time in sports. Why can’t you break one in music?”
Elliott’s doubts about Motley Crue’s retirement were justified. Four years later, the band blew up the cessation contract before announcing a nationwide stadium tour for 2020. Def Leppard will co-headline the trek, with Poison and Joan Jett providing support.
“When you think about Joan Jett opening up the night, and then Poison going on and then us and Motley following them, it’s an event. It really is. And we’re all from the same genre,” Elliott remarked, expressing his excitement for the tour. “It’s a celebration of that whole kind of vibe.”
Some people have expressed frustration that Motley Crue are touring again, given the assurance that their last performance was truly farewell. To those fans, Elliott says “lighten up.” “It’s four guys that had enough of each other for a while and after five years, they’ve fallen back in love again,” the rocker explained. “Fucking get on with it. I’m happy for them. It’s great for them — and us as well.”
Unlike the Crue -- who have broken up, reunited, retired and returned -- Def Leppard have remained the model of consistency, continually touring and churning out material since their 1977 inception. Still, Elliott admitted that the concept of a farewell tour has crossed his mind.
“One day, something will end up being our last tour,” the singer admitted. “Will we announce it, or will it just actually be our last tour because we just decide not to do it anymore, and after the fact it turns into the farewell tour? I don’t know. Those are the kinds of things we’re not making any plans for. And even if we did, we’d probably end up tearing up the contract just like Motley Crue did.”