Rick Allen reveals he could have lost his right arm in 1984



One of the great stories of perseverance in rock is the story of Def Leppard drummer Rick Allen, who overcame the loss of his left arm in a car crash in 1984, but still remained behind the kit when the group returned with the years 1987. Hysteria album after reconfiguring its drum setup. But according to Allen, there was a period when he feared losing his right arm as well.

In an interview with Joe Rock (as seen below), Allen recounts the experience. “Not many people know that, but I broke my right arm very badly, and during the healing process, in the hospital, they said, ‘There is a chance that you will lose your right arm too.'”

The drummer’s left arm was caught in the seat belt when he was thrown from his vehicle in the car crash. While the arm could be put back in place, the doctors then had to amputate due to an infection.

Allen continues, “When I was able to go through this horrible time and clear all the infection and then fix the bone and the arm, you can imagine I was so grateful.”

In addition to returning to the kit for Def Leppard, Allen has deepened his artistic expression in recent years by adding painting to his skills. In the artwork, Allen occasionally focused on his remaining arm for inspiration.

“The handprint is really, for me, a sign of gratitude, that I can still do what I do. And I put my hand through a lot – from drums to art and, obviously, everything I do. So it’s pretty symbolic. It’s the only one I have, but I’m really lucky to have it, “he laughs.

“I think I came out stronger, and I think I grew a lot as a person,” Allen says, reflecting on how his life changed after the accident. “I think the experience itself is kind of a blessing, which is kind of strange to say, but the experience itself actually… I think it made me a better person.”

In his free time with the group, Allen took his works to galleries, showing pieces at exhibitions. You can see some of his works, as well as art pieces that he translated into jewelry there.

Rick Allen of Def Leppard talks with Joe Rock

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