3/15: MY THOUGHTS ON LATEST BRIAN JOHNSON AC/DC STUFF
Lots of news today made by my friend Jim Breuer and his podcast stating that Brian Johnson was pushed out of AC/DC. Notable that the podcast has since come down and Jim has softened some of his story. Read into that what you will. In light of all of this I’ve been asked about my thoughts by many. I’ll say this; it does seem strange that a hearing issue could come on so quick that it would end a tour. It does seem strange that something like this couldn’t be managed in some way. I am no sound engineer but there must be some protection that can be taken I would think? As I’ve said all along what direction AC/DC goes next will tell you a lot about all of this. If they go get a younger guy Angus (who is youngest in the band) may keep this band going 10 more years. If they get a few celeb singers and do a sort of Farewell then Brian’s situation may be very real and they bow out gracefully.
I know Brian. I am not going to tell you I know him well and hang with him. But we have spoken from time to time and he has done my radio show several times as well as TMS. He is one of my favorite people. A real guy for sure. I had never heard of him having hearing issues or needing to raise my voice around him as was the case with others. I can also tell you he always at times almost talked about AC/DC like he wasn’t in the band. “Whatever Mal and Ang say..” was a familiar line. He is a good guy, was great in the gig, and will be hugely missed if this did not happen on his terms. In the last week it has been STUNNING to me to see how many fans are already talking about who the next singer is without asking questions and worrying about Brian. This is BRIAN JOHNSON! 36 years in AC/DC! Singer in one of the biggest bands and on one of the biggest albums EVER! It’s not like another drummer change (and I say that with all respect to drummers, but you get it).
I also know Brian was getting tired out there. In his late 60’s that is understandable. This is a high energy show and tough stuff to sing. I know the band were only able to play no more than 3 times a week max because he needed rest. This is not uncommon for older singers. Same goes with Steve Tyler these days. But it is expensive for a band to sit around in hotels off that many days. All of this plays in to the equation I think. It could be that Brian had some hearing issues and there was other stuff brewing. Angus saw it as a chance to do a third AC/DC and do another 10 years of more activity by using this as the vehicle to make a change. We have seen the very familiar move in music these days where bands are selling a logo and maybe one original member. The name AC/DC is one of the biggest on the planet. With that logo, those songs, and Angus, if they find the right guy they will find an audience. But it’s tricky and these are huge shoes to fill. So I think there are a combination of things at work here. And what AC/DC do and say going forward will be telling. They have always been a very close knit quiet camp. So until there is something real to announce everything is speculation for sure. But it will be interesting to watch. Most importantly if Brian is having any issue I hope he is well. I left him a voice mail today with my regards. He is a class act all the way and it would be greatly disappointing if this did not happen on his terms given how much he has put into this band over the decades.