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Viv Campbell 'never gelled' with Whitesnake

Def Lep man says his 2-year spell with Coverdale's crew was a case of style over substance

Vivian Campbell says his spell with Whitesnake "doesn't mean an awful lot" in the grand scheme of his career.

The Def Leppard and former Dio guitarist was a member of David Coverdale's band for almost two years from 1987 but says that particular lineup of the group was a case of style over substance and "never gelled."

He tells the Evening Chronicle: "That line up of Whitesnake never really gelled musically, and I think that's because we met on the set of a video and the first thing we did was the Still Of The Night video.

"The second thing we did was the Here I Go Again video, and then we did the Is This Love video, and then we went in to rehearse. We literally rehearsed for 48 hours and went out on tour. For me, it was just an image-based band because of MTV, and none of us had played on the record, so there was no chemistry unlike in Dio, where the chemistry was unmistakable.

"When I played with Jimmy Bain and Vinny Appice in Dio, we were really tight together, but in Whitesnake it felt like five guys each doing their own thing. On paper, the pedigree was amazing, with Tommy Aldridge, Adrian Vandenberg and Rudy Sarzo.

"We were all great individually, but that lineup with those musicians never really gelled. It was fun at the time, and I was flattered to have been invited to be a part of the band, but it doesn't mean an awful lot to me from a musical point of view."

The current lineup of Whitesnake are supporting Def Leppard on their current UK and Ireland tour. Campbell never recorded an album with Whitesnake and says he doesn't really include it when looking back over his achievements.

He adds: "I don’t really think of Whitesnake as being part of my career because I never got to write any new songs with them. I was with them just under two years for one very, very long tour. We went in to start making a new record but things didn’t work out for one reason or another.

"David basically said he just wanted to write with Adrian Vandenberg as they had a good partnership going and that was fair enough, it was his band and his prerogative. At the same time Adrian didn’t want me in the band. It was nothing personal he didn’t want any other guitar player there, he wanted to be a solo guitar player in Whitesnake."

Def Leppard's self-titled 11th album was released via a Classic Rock fanpack in October.

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