Happy Birthday today (Feb. 16) to Pete Willis. The former Def Leppard guitarist is 56. Also celebrating is former Slayer drummer Dave Lombardo (51).

Dave Lombardo
(L to R) Kerry King, Dave Lombardo, Jeff Hanneman and Tom Araya of Slayer. Photo by Jo Hale/Getty Images


Pete Willis was an original guitarist for Def Leppard and co-wrote many songs on the first three albums (On Through the Night, High ‘n’ Dry, and Pyromania). In 1982, he was fired from Def Leppard and replaced by Phil Collen while the band was recording the Pyromania album. Initial success for the band came with the 1981 album “High and Dry”, but it was 1983’s “Pyromania” that would become their breakthrough album, getting certified Diamond in the U.S. for 10 million copies sold and the mega hit “Photograph”.

For more on Pete Willis and Def Leppard, check out the official Def Leppard website here.