Angus Young Insists AC/DC Didn’t Fire Brian Johnson
Angus Young has a message for AC/DC fans taking sides following singer Brian Johnson's health-related exit from the lineup: Don't believe everything you hear.
"You get a lot of rumors out there; a lot of people think Brian was fired. That's not the case," says Young in a new band video, which you can watch above. "It was mainly his hearing. He already had a very bad ear, and the good ear that he had left was dropping rapidly. I mean, it was ongoing ... all the way pretty much through the tour from the beginning."
"He had an instance where there was a marked drop in that one good ear and it came back, but not completely," adds bassist Cliff Williams. "The doc told him this can happen again and it may not come back. So, you know, you kind of — what do you do with that?"
As Young sees it, the situation was out of the band's control — and they knew they were going to face some blowback no matter what they did, whether they continued without Johnson or pulled the plug on the tour. "We wouldn't win in a lot of situations, because if we just stopped, there would have been a lot of people unhappy."
For Axl Rose, the opportunity to step in as Johnson's replacement sounds like something of a bittersweet dream come true. "It's a horrible thing," he said of Johnson's condition. "You hope he gets better. I'm not dancing around about this, because it's not like, okay, somebody said they're gonna go do something else. It's because of an unfortunate circumstance. And that's something I'm very aware of."
AC/DC Lineup Changes: A Complete Guide