Jon Taffer and Def Leppard

Dear Parishioners,

This week on AXS Live I had two interviews that seemed to get our viewers pretty worked up with anticipation.

First, on Wednesday, I sat down with the Executive Producer and Host of Spike TV’s Bar Rescue, Jon Taffer. All week leading up to this interview, people were sending me tweets, e-mails, and text messages… And they all said the same thing: “You’re interviewing Jon Taffer?”

No questions for the guy. No inquiries about what I was going to ask him. They all just wanted confirmation that the event was happening. Then, I’m sure they tuned-in to see if I would get yelled at.

I met Jon briefly before the show and, as you might guess, the guy is a pro. He showed up 15 minutes before his call-time, meaning he was poised and ready for a whole hour before he even went on camera. He was genuinely warm and charismatic and, overall, had a vibe to him like, “Okay, well, if we’re here to make television, let’s do it, let’s do the best we can, and let’s make it great!”

When Jon walked onto the set, he immediately saw the small gang of writers, producers, and crew who act as our in-studio audience. Without hesitation, he said, “If I knew there were going to be this many people here, I would’ve charged an appearance fee.” The guy was getting laughs before he even stepped into the lights. We liked him a lot. For more on Jon Taffer, go HERE!

Check out our interview here:

Then, on Thursday, I got to close out my week by interviewing Def Leppard. To be fair, Sav and Joe were not in attendance, so, technically, it wasn’t the whole band. But, we have a small studio– Once I take a seat, there’s barely enough room for three more legends to squeeze into frame. So, I like to think that things worked out for the best.

I didn’t get a chance to meet Rick, Viv, and Phil before the show. And I wasn’t sure what to expect.

Would they be snooty rockstars, completely pissed that they even agreed to do the program? Would I have to fill six-minutes of air-time struggling to come up with questions only to have them give one-word answers? Would it suck? Would I be embarrassed by rockstars on live television? All of those questions were piercing into my brain while I’m standing in the lights, talking into the camera, reporting the day’s big news stories. We. Are. Live.

Then, during a commercial break, one of our producers, Brigiite, pointed to the greenroom and whispered to me, “You’re making Def Leppard laugh.”

O-kay! Nice. Now, I just have to hope I don’t get too cocky during the interview, take a joke too far, and piss them off. Cool. Don’t ruin this, Stout.

At some point, I ran back to the greenroom to say, “Hello,” introduce myself, and thank them for coming. And, wouldn’t you know it, great guys. Happy to be there. No pretense. No expectations. They almost seemed surprised that I ran back to meet them. Perfect. I’ve got them fooled. They think I’m someone.

Jump to the interview.

The first thing out of their mouths was a joke about Rick missing an arm. Then, a quip about Phil’s wrist guard. Opening the door for me to talk about Viv’s health.

We have lift-off.

So, fun and easy. I really hope those boys come back and, maybe, play us a song or two… Check out the interview here:

Their new LIVE concert, filmed this summer, Def Leppard VIVA! Hysteria, can be seen in a movie theater near you, just click HERE! Or pick up the BluRay when it comes out on October 22nd.

Also, notice the seating arrangement: Rick was given the armrest, thus allowing Viv more room in the center, and Phil got the other armrest. Makes sense, right?!? If you’re not sure why that’s important to me, you haven’t ever looked at my YouTube page. Courtesy!!!

AXS Live airs every Monday thru Thursday at 7pm Eastern, 4pm Pacific, on AXS TV. Oh, and we’re completely LIVE! Our slogan should be: “We don’t have time to pre-tape, so we just broadcast our mistakes.”

See you soon.



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