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List of AC/DC band members

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AC/DC band members
The Black Ice World Tour lineup performing live in 2009

AC/DC are an Australian hard rock band formed by guitarist brothers Angus and Malcolm Young in 1973. Originally featuring vocalist Dave Evans, bassist Larry Van Kriedt and drummer Colin Burgess, after a number of lineup changes the band settled with Bon Scott on vocals, Mark Evans on bass guitar and Phil Rudd on drums, and released five albums (two limited to Australia) between 1975 and 1977. Due to continuing clashes with lead guitarist Angus Young, Evans was later fired from the band shortly after the release of Let There Be Rock, although "musical differences" was the official reason given for his departure.[1] Cliff Williams was brought in as his replacement.[2] After another two successful albums and as the band were due to start recording again, Scott died in London on 19 February 1980 due to alcohol poisoning.[3] The band briefly considered quitting, but later chose to carry on and hired Brian Johnson to take Scott's place as lead vocalist.[4] The group's first album with Johnson was Back in Black in 1980, which is now the second best-selling album of all-time after Michael Jackson's Thriller.[5] After the recording of Flick of the Switch in 1983, Phil Rudd quietly left the band due to problems with drug and alcohol abuse as well as a confrontation with rhythm guitarist Malcolm Young.[6]

Simon Wright joined as Rudd's replacement, performing on the albums Fly on the Wall (1985), Who Made Who (1986) and Blow Up Your Video (1988) during his time in the band. He left the band in 1989, and later explained that he "began to get complacent about things", claiming that he "needed to expand on [his] drumming more".[7] He would later join the band Dio. The next drummer to join AC/DC was Chris Slade, who despite being in the band for five years only performed on one studio album, The Razors Edge. In 1994 Slade departed from the band, due to the desire of the Young brothers to return to working with former drummer Rudd, who they said "demonstrated a 'groove' more fitting [to] their style of rock".[8] The lineup of Johnson, A. Young, M. Young, Williams and Rudd remained from 1994 until 2014, and released the albums Ballbreaker (1995), Stiff Upper Lip (2000), and Black Ice (2008).

In April 2014 the band announced that founding member Malcolm Young was ill and would be taking a leave of absence from the band. In June 2014 the band recorded their latest album Rock or Bust with the Young brothers' nephew Stevie Young as a stand-in rhythm guitarist for his uncle. On 24 September 2014, it was confirmed that Malcolm Young, who suffers from dementia, had officially departed from the band due to ill health, and would be replaced by Stevie permanently.[9] Shortly thereafter, Rudd was arrested and pleaded guilty to drug charges and threatening to kill a former assistant.[10] After the plea, the band's official web site changed the listed drummer to Chris Slade who had been replacing him for their 2015 tour.[11][12] Axl Rose joined as a touring member in April 2016. Cliff Williams has left the band after the Rock or Bust World Tour. The current line up of the band includes Angus Young, Chris Slade and Stevie Young, together with Axl Rose on lead vocals.

Current members[edit]

Image Name Years active Instruments Contributions
Angus Young Angus Young 1973 – present lead guitar
Occasional instruments: rhythm guitar, backing vocals, slide guitar
All releases
Chris Slade Chris Slade November 1989 – August 1994, February 2015 – present drums The Razors Edge (1990), Live (1992) and "Big Gun" (1993)
Stevie Young April–November 1988 (touring member), May 2014 – present rhythm guitar, backing vocals Rock or Bust (2014). Also replaced Malcolm Young for the US leg of the Blow Up Your Video World Tour while Malcolm was recovering from health problems.[13]
Axl Rose Axl Rose[14] 2016 – present lead vocals none

Former members[edit]

Image Name Years active Instruments Contributions
Malcolm Young Malcolm Young 1973 – September 2014 rhythm guitar, backing vocals All releases prior to Rock or Bust (2014)
Cliff Williams Cliff Williams 1977 – September 2016 bass guitar, backing vocals All releases from Powerage (1978) to Rock or Bust (2014)
Brian Johnson Brian Johnson 1980 – 2016 lead vocals All releases from Back in Black (1980) to Rock or Bust (2014)
Phil Rudd Phil Rudd January 1975 – May 1983, August 1994 – 2015 drums, percussion, backing vocals All releases from T.N.T. (1975) to Flick of the Switch (1983); Ballbreaker (1995) to Rock or Bust (2014)
Bon Scott Bon Scott September 1974 – February 1980 lead vocals, bagpipes All releases from High Voltage (1975) to Highway to Hell (1979)
Simon Wright Simon Wright July 1983 – November 1989 drums, percussion Fly on the Wall (1985), Who Made Who (1986) and Blow Up Your Video (1988)
Mark Evans March 1975 – June 1977 bass guitar All releases from T.N.T. (1975) to Let There Be Rock (1977)
Peter Clack April 1974 – January 1975 drums "Can I Sit Next to You Girl" (1974) and High Voltage (1975)
Rob Bailey April 1974 – January 1975 bass guitar "Can I Sit Next to You Girl" (1974) and High Voltage (1975)
Dave Evans Dave Evans December 1973 – September 1974 lead vocals "Can I Sit Next to You Girl" (1974)
Larry Van Kriedt Larry Van Kriedt December 1973 – February 1974, January 1975 bass guitar, saxophone Live performances only. Occasionally switched to saxophone during some gigs.[15] Returned in January 1975 to fill in briefly after Rob Bailey was fired.
Colin Burgess December 1973 – February 1974, September 1975 drums Returned in September 1975 to replace Phil Rudd for a few gigs, as Rudd had injured his hand.
Neil Smith February–April 1974 bass guitar Live performances only.[16]
Noel Taylor February–April 1974 drums Live performances only.[16]
Paul Matters February–March 1975 bass guitar Recruited at George Young's suggestion, Matters was fired after 11 gigs.[17]
Ron Carpenter February 1974 drums Live performances only.
Russell Coleman January 1975 drums Performed at a small number of gigs during the first week of January 1975, immediately before Phil Rudd was hired.[18]

Session musicians and temporary replacements[edit]

Image Name Years active Instruments Release contributions
George Young 1974, 1975 bass guitar, backing vocals, rhythm guitar, drums Contributed various instruments, mainly bass guitar, on High Voltage (1975) and several subsequent albums, but was only credited as a producer. He often filled in on bass guitar at live shows during 1974–75.[19]
Dennis Laughlin 1974 lead vocals Band manager who occasionally filled in for Dave Evans for live performances.
Bruce Howe 1975 bass guitar One of Bon Scott's former Fraternity bandmates, he briefly played bass with AC/DC.[20] Howe never recorded with the group.
John Proud 1974 drums Contributed to High Voltage (1975) as a session musician. Uncredited.[21][22]
Tony Currenti 1974 drums Contributed to High Voltage (1975) and the "High Voltage" single as a session musician. Uncredited.[21][22]
B.J. Wilson 1983 drums Was brought in to record tracks for the Flick of the Switch (1983) album following Phil Rudd's departure from the band. His contributions were ultimately not used on the album and Simon Wright joined the band shortly thereafter.[23] Wilson was previously the drummer with Procol Harum.
Paul Greg 1991 bass guitar Replaced Cliff Williams for a few shows on the US leg of the Razor's Edge tour, when Williams was ill.[24]
Bob Richards 3–4 October 2014 drums Replaced Phil Rudd for the filming of the "Rock or Bust" and "Play Ball" videos in London as Rudd was unable to attend due to family emergency.[25] Richards did not contribute musically.

Timeline[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "AC/DC". MILESAGO: Australasian Music & Popular Culture 1964-1975. Ice Productions. Retrieved 8 April 2012. 
  2. ^ Marky Billson (29 August 2008). "Let There Be Rock". The Austin Chronicle. Retrieved 8 April 2012. 
  3. ^ Richard Jinman (19 February 2005). "25 years on, AC/DC fans recall how wild rocker met his end". The Guardian. Retrieved 8 April 2012. 
  4. ^ Greg Prato. "Biography". Brian Johnson. Allmusic. Retrieved 8 April 2012. 
  5. ^ "The 50 best-selling albums ever". NME. 21 October 2010. Retrieved 8 April 2012. 
  6. ^ Eduardo Rivadavia. "Biography". Phil Rudd. Allmusic. Retrieved 8 April 2012. 
  7. ^ "Drummer Simon Wright On AC/DC, Ronnie James Dio And Dio Disciples". Blabbermouth.net. Roadrunner Records. 17 August 2011. Retrieved 8 April 2012. 
  8. ^ "Former AC/DC Drummer Chris Slade Interviewed At NAMM (Video)". Blabbermouth.net. Roadrunner Records. 31 January 2012. Retrieved 8 April 2012. 
  9. ^ "AC/DC 'ROCK OR BUST'". Alberts Management. Retrieved 24 September 2014. 
  10. ^ Kreps, Daniel (21 April 2015). "AC/DC Drummer Phil Rudd Pleads Guilty to Drugs, Threatening to Kill Charges". RollingStone.com. Rolling Stone magazine. Retrieved 29 April 2015. 
  11. ^ "AC/DC confirm Chris Slade will replace Phil Rudd on their 2015 tour". theguardian.com. The Guardian. 13 February 2015. Retrieved 29 April 2015. 
  12. ^ "The Band, The Official AC/DC Website". ACDC.com. Sony Music Entertainment. 2015. Retrieved 29 April 2015. 
  13. ^ Wall, p.386–88
  14. ^ "Major Update on AC/DC's Future: What the Band Will Do Now That Cliff's Retired - Music News @ Ultimate-Guitar.Com". 
  15. ^ Mick Wall, "AC/DC: Hell Ain't a Bad Place to Be, Phoenix, 2012, p.59
  16. ^ a b Wall, p.62–65
  17. ^ Wall, p.141
  18. ^ Wall, p.132
  19. ^ Mick Wall, "AC/DC: Hell Ain't a Bad Place to Be, Phoenix, 2012.
  20. ^ http://www.rockdetector.com/person/aus/howe/bruce
  21. ^ a b Wall, p.124
  22. ^ a b Fink, Jesse (1 November 2013). The Youngs: The Brothers Who Built AC/DC. Ebury Australia. ISBN 9781742759791. 
  23. ^ "Ac/dc". PediaPress – via Google Books. 
  24. ^ Masino 2009, p. 178.
  25. ^ "AC/DC's Phil Rudd sits out video shoot; ex-Shogun drummer Bob Richards steps in". Blabbermouth. 6 October 2014. Retrieved 7 October 2014.