Def Leppard's Joe Elliott: My Life in 15 Songs

U.K. hitmakers' singer on "Pour Some Sugar on Me," "Photograph" and other glammy gems

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"Hello America" (1980)

We had never even been to America at that point. I was working in a factory with lots of nuts and bolts and no natural light. But there was a lot of downtime, and I would sit around writing stuff. With this one, I had seen a TV show the night before — Kojak or Starsky & Hutch, something where they show the tree-lined boulevards of L.A. You see all these palm trees and you go, "Wow, this is a lot sexier than Sheffield!" That's where that lyric came from — "Well I'm takin' me a trip/I'm going down to Californ-i-a." It was, "Get me out of here!"

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