Wednesday, April 16, 2014

AC/DC release statement addressing retirement rumors

Australian rockers AC/DC have released a statement regarding the band’s status and future in the wake of rumors surrounding the health of guitarist Malcolm Young (pictured above) and their possible retirement.

“After forty years of life dedicated to AC/DC, guitarist and founding member Malcolm Young is taking a break from the band due to ill health,” posted the band. “Malcolm would like to thank the group’s diehard legions of fans worldwide for their never-ending love and support.”

“In light of this news,” they added, “AC/DC asks that Malcolm and his family’s privacy be respected during this time. The band will continue to make music.”

Various media outlets have reported Young - the older brother of bandmate and lead guitarist Angus Young - has been dealing with health issues for some time, which lead singer Brian Johnson revealed earlier this year.

In response to a rumored new album and 40th anniversary tour this year, Johnson told 98.7 The Gater in West Palm Beach, Florida in February that “We’ve been denying anything because we weren’t sure. One of our boys was pretty ill, so we didn’t like to say anything. We’re very private about things like this and he’s a very proud man. But I think we’ll be going in the studio in May in Vancouver – which means we should be getting ready.”

“It’s been 40 years of the band’s existence, so I think we’re going to try to go 40 gigs to thank the fans for their undying loyalty,” Johnson continued. “Honestly, our fans are just the best in the world and we appreciate every one of them. So we have to go out even though we’re getting a bit long in the tooth. It’s been four years [since our last tour] and I’m really looking forward to it.”

On Tuesday, Australian music journalist Darryl Mason reported that Young suffered a stroke three weeks ago that has left a blood clot on his brain; Mason says the event happened just prior to the band reuniting at the start of April to begin rehearsals ahead of new album recording sessions planned for Vancouver next month.

Read Mason’s report here.

On Wednesday, the Sydney Morning Herald reported that band friend and Choirboys frontman Mark Gable said believes the 61-year-old founding guitarist is unable to perform anymore and will probably never record again.

"That is true, Malcolm is sick," Gable told ABC Radio on Wednesday morning. "From what I understand, and it's even been confirmed in part by his son Ross (Young), that it would appear Malcolm is unable to perform anymore. It's not just that he is unwell, it's that it is quite serious. It will constitute that he definitely won't be able to perform live. He will probably not be able to record."

The Herald story went on to reveal some of the challenges the guitarist has been dealing with in the past few months – read more here.

See also:

AC/DC friend confirms health issues facing guitarist Malcolm Young
REPORT: AC/DC to retire after guitarist suffers stroke
RUMOR: AC/DC retirement announcement pending
AC/DC guitar stolen from Vancouver area restaurant
AC/DC classic featured in preview of Disney’s Planes Fire & Rescue
Search AC/DC at hennemusic