Jenna: I'm giving a drum lesson this evening to a little boy who wants to play like the White Stripes. He doesn't differentiate gender in this case. He's just thinking, "I want to sound like that!" I think that's so cute. He's not like, "Oh, that's a girl." He's not self-conscious about it. Her work is almost on a tribal level because it's really stripped down playing.
Rick Allen: I love it! You know who else is a really good source of tribal drumming? You wouldn't think it, but Larry Mullen, Jr. from U2. I love that kind of playing. If I could do that every day, that would be incredible.
J: Yeah! There's a reason U2 and Def Leppard are both huge. The music, the beat, can tap into your heart. What do you two listen to for enjoyment? Do your favorite bands find a place in your inspiration for music?
Lauren Monroe: So many things! It goes from Frank Sinatra to AC/DC and everything in between. We listen to a lot of chant music around the house.
R: I think every form of music has its place. You can always find the time, the right time and the inspiration from it.
J: The live shows with Lauren are such a different environment than when you play with Def Leppard. Do you like the change?
R: I love the change! My first drum was a cookie tin. [laughter] I moved on to the tambourine. Then finally my parents, they were really kind and they put a drum kit on lay-away. So, acoustic drums have really always been my passion. It's great doing what I do with Def Leppard and the electronic drums. It's obviously another facet, another form, of what I do. But to get back to the real organic; acoustic drums are such a huge treat for me.
J: I just have to say, Rick you're such an inspiration. What you've done, how you overcame your injuries and that you continue to play... I'm getting teary. I think it's so amazing.
R: Oh, that's sweet! The beautiful thing is that I'm still overcoming. That's life. You constantly face challenges. This whole project with Lauren has been a huge challenge for both of us, I'm sure. It's great when you can go into things, embark upon them with all this passion and actually make something good out of it.
But wait, there's more! This phone interview happened in 2009 and there are deliciously dated references the current music of The White Stripes, MySpace being the hot go-to for bands and the Jonas Brothers on tour. Click on those links and have some fun.
UPDATE: The show was completely amazing, as expected, and so emotional for me that I cried. I can feel the Facebook unfriending from here - I see you! I jest - I'm not friends with people who aren't Def Leppard fans in touch with their emotions.