When Whitesnake reformed in 1982, only Jon Lord and Mick Moody remained from the earlier line-up. The new members were Mel Galley on guitar, the ex-Back Door and Alexis Korner bassist Clin Hodgkinson and Cozy Powell on drums. However, this configuration lasted only briefly and by 1984 the long-serving Moody and Lord had left, the latter to join a regenerated Deep Purple.
While David Coverdale (b.22 Sept. 49, Slatburn-On-Sea, Yorshire, England) remained the focus of Whitesnake, there were numerous personnel changes in the following years recruiting Tony Franklin (bass, ex-The Firm) and Carmine Appice (drums and ex-Beck-Boggert-Appice), then including the return of Neil Murray (ex-Colosseum, ex-National Health) on bass and the recruiting of Aynsley Dunbar on drums. These had little effect on the band’s growing reputation as one of the leading exponents of heavy-rock, with unambiguously sexist record sleeves marking out their lyrical and aesthetic territory. Considerably more commercial than ever before, 1987, previewed by the Top 10 Led Zeppelin-esque Still Of The Night, stormed the both charts.
Frequent tours finally brought a million-selling album in the U.S.A with 1987’s Whitesnake and Coverdale’s bluesy ballad style brought transatlantic Top 10 hits with a re-mixed Here I Go Again, the original can be found on Saints and Sinners, (US number 1, UK number 9) and Is This Love (US number 2, UK number 9). They were co-written with ex-Thin Lizzy guitarist John Sykes (ex-Tygers Of Pan Tang), a member of Whitesnake from 1983-1986. Unfortunately, the group stability scored again. Sykes (b. 29 jul 1959) split for Blue Murder and Coverdale recruited a whole line-up numbering Dutch-born Adrian Vanderberg (guitar, b. 31 January 1954, Holland), Rudy Sarzo (bass and ex-Ozzy Osbourne and ex-Quiet Riot), Tommy Aldridge (drums and ex-Ozzy Osbourne and ex-Black Oak Arkansas) and Vivian Campbell. Guitar wizard Steve Vai (ex-Frank Zappa and ex-David Lee Roth) subsequently replaced Campbell and this line-up gave a headlining performance at the 1989 Monsters of Rock Festival.
In November 1989, the highly anticipated Slip Of The Tongue failed to match the giddy commercial heights of its predecessor and David Coverdale put the band on ice… till 1997.