Interviewed by Brian Rademacher
Date: January 2010
Brian Rademacher: Hello Lisbeth and welcome back to RockEyez.com
Well a truly sad day for music fans will arrive shortly as it will mark the passing of your son Dave Lepard on January 20th. That will be four years since the great one has been looking down on us.
Lisbeth Hellman: Yes, the whole month of January is a bad month! There are so many thoughts, and I’m counting every day until the 20th. But we know that was not the day of David’s death! He was found the 20th. And the doctor said he had been dead for 5-6 days…that was that period where no one heard from him. So, the right day will be the 13th. That still makes me so sad and frustrated that my son was alone and dead in his apartment for 5-6 days. That hurts. And I can never get rid of that feeling and knowledge. That’s bad.
Brian Rademacher: On that day what goes through your mind?
Lisbeth Hellman: I feel sick. I still hate this situation.
Brian Rademacher: Do a lot of fans send you wishes on that day to lift your spirits?
Lisbeth Hellman: Yes they do. They are all so kind. They send their love to Dave and their regards to me and his sisters. Many of the fans wrote on the forum (www.rest-in-sleaze.com) "has anybody here talked to Dave? I didn’t get a chance"! And that they are so sad they have never got to talk to him.
Brian Rademacher: Do you hear from any of the members of CRASHDÏET during this time?
Lisbeth Hellman: Oh yes, we still have contact. Erik was visiting me in early autumn; we had dinner and talked a lot.
Brian Rademacher: In our last interview you quoted: "I don’t listen to any music anymore! And I can’t really listen to David, It hurts so much. But maybe at a later time, I don’t know." Have you listened to any of Dave’s music since our last interview and if so what were your thoughts?
Lisbeth Hellman: Yes, I have started listening last month! I´m trying and it makes me both sad and happy! I have also looked at some videos…It’s amazing to see him… he´s so full of life!
Brian Rademacher: Has anyone approached you in releasing any of Dave’s unreleased material?
Lisbeth Hellman: Yes, the fans have asked me, and also Chris Laney is interested, but Chris is a very busy man…. But on my Facebook page you can listen to one of the last songs David did, "Victory"! Dave wrote it just a couple a weeks before he died.
Brian Rademacher: All of Dave’s possessions that he owned during CRASHDÏET, do you still have that stuff or was anything donated. I mean like guitars, stage clothes and things like that?
Lisbeth Hellman: Our family has his stuff. Here in my bedroom I have his silver Ibanez guitar and the golden plate from the single" "Breakin' the Chainz"" and some nice photos when David was a little boy. The only thing I don’t have is for the (donation) I did, which are at the Hard rock Cafe in Stockholm, there is one of his boots and some CD´s and his bracelets, and the sides are covered in lepard-fabric
Brian Rademacher: If you could think of one thing that a fan said to you or sent you pertaining to Dave what would that be?
Lisbeth Hellman: I still remember that young girl, about 13 years old, who wrote to me at the msn: Lisbeth, if you need to talk I´ll be here for you"! That was so nice….. Everybody has been so nice to me…unbelievable.
Brian Rademacher: At night before you go to bed do you say any kind of prayer?
Lisbeth Hellman: NO! For me there ís no God! Too many bad things happened in the world and I can’t see any reasons why a God should let it happen. I think it’s better to trust in yourselves. It’s only you who can do things.
Brian Rademacher: Do you believe that after death you are reunited with family members?
Lisbeth Hellman: No I don’t believe in that. But sometimes I wish!! In early ‘06 I really believed so, but that was because of my depressive and sad mind……
Brian Rademacher: After Dave’s passing CRASHDÏET mentioned they would NOT continue the band without Dave, yet later decided to continue. Did you have any thoughts about that?
Lisbeth Hellman: Hmmm…I think that was natural for them to think and feel so. They have a lot of grief and sorrow too. Their life’s got ruined too. But they where musicians and love to play music…and they had to go on with their lives! And what was the alternative for them????, To die or to live with happiness??? I don’t think that people have thought about the emptiness they felt. No one would have guessed that he would have done this! In fact I feel a little bit sorry for them, and for all people who lost a beloved person, especially by suicide. That’s terrible to live with the knowledge that a person you love suddenly disappears and you couldn’t help him.
Brian Rademacher: Also CRASHDÏET had a contest to change their logo, what were your feelings about that?
Lisbeth Hellman: A-ha…I remember that! First I got upset! I thought that if they should change the logo they must change the name. (It was a big discussion here in Sweden about that) But after a while I thought; what the heck! They can name the band whatever they want to! AND…when they kept the CRASHDÏET name we will all remember David. So CRASHDÏET will spread the memory of David and keep his music alive. That’s the only thing I care about! As long as we think of David, he´s alive!
Brian Rademacher: You mentioned in the past that Peter London of CRASHDÏET kept in touch with you the most. Now in 2010 CRASHDÏET will be playing the "Rest In Sleaze festival" which you promote. How did you get the band to play this year and who else is on the bill?
Lisbeth Hellman: Oh that was no problem! I asked, and they said yes of course and felt happy that I asked them. It's an honor for them to play at RIS in the memory of David and Peter London has been playing every year in different constellations! Ha-ha-ha, he once said: that’s my destiny to play at all the RIS-festivals! And the other guy’s always shows up with the audience. About the other bands who will play there are three bands from Sweden : one girl-rock-band named VISIONS - very nice girls! And RAW DIAMOND from Uppsala, and BULLETRAIN. From Finland, SCENE DE CRYME from Italy, THE POLLUTION. Six bands will play and one Swedish band will get the scholarship this year too. I still have about 30-40 bands who will play at RIS!!!! From all over the world, example DIRTY PENNY from California!!! That’s fantastic. It has become so big in this sleazy-world. People from all over the whole wide world mail me and ask to buy a memory tees! From Singapore, Canada, Europe, USA, the east-states, and the north!! Every year I have a different tee with a picture of David. But I only make 75 shirts. So they are rather unique!!!
Brian Rademacher: I mean no one can replace Dave as the front man of CRASHDÏET because his great stage presence and style, besides his vocals. But a band must move on and CRASHDÏET has recruited Simon Cruz. What’s your impression of Simon?
Lisbeth Hellman: I haven’t met Simon yet. But I have heard him singing at a demo and it sounds good. He is Simon and doesn’t try to be David. I like that. He will fit in with CRASHDÏET, he seems to be a serious young man and a singer! And I know that the CRASHBOYS like him very much.
Brian Rademacher: Do you have a favorite sleaze band now, not counting CRASHDÏET?
Lisbeth Hellman: HA-HA…no! I like the bands that play at RIS! That’s why they get the chance to play! They send demos to me and I´m listening…. I do have so many bands to listen to. I must be the oldest sleaze-rocker-listener, with a big library of sleaze music CD´s!!!! A grand-ma-rocker!
Brian Rademacher: Would you like to say anything in closing?
Lisbeth Hellman: Well…at last I can tell that this RIS will be at KLUBBEN/the club, in Stockholm and that was the last gig I saw with David. It was the 9th of December ‘05 and after the gig he went to me and took me in his arms…he was so proud of himself and that we, his 2 sisters, and me had been there to listen to him. He had said earlier, "Mum, I would love you to come and listen to every gig I play! Then he went home with us in my car… I would say it was one of the best gigs they have done!
Before ending I would like to thank The Hellman family once again for agreeing to our interview. Mrs. Lisbeth Hellman and I have been friends since our last interview and has mentioned to me that our interview back in 2008 helped her with the healing process.
We all thank you
Brian Rademacher CEO of RockEyez.com