AC/DC are an Australian rock band, formed in 1973 by brothers Malcolm and Angus Young. Although the band are commonly classified as hard rock and are considered a pioneer of heavy metal, they have always classified their music as rock and roll. To date they are one of the highest grossing bands of all time. AC/DC underwent several line-up changes before releasing their first album, High Voltage, in 1975. Membership remained stable until bassist Mark Evans was replaced by Cliff Williams in 1978 for the album Powerage. Within months of recording the album Highway to Hell, lead singer and co-songwriter Bon Scott died on 19 February 1980, after a night of heavy alcohol consumption. The group briefly considered disbanding, but Scott's parents urged them to continue and hire a new vocalist. Ex-Geordie singer Brian Johnson was auditioned and selected to replace Scott. Later that year, the band released their highest selling album, Back in Black.
The band's next album, For Those About to Rock We Salute You, was their first album to reach number one in the United States. AC/DC declined in popularity soon after drummer Phil Rudd was fired in 1983 and was replaced by future Dio drummer Simon Wright, though the band resurged in the early 1990s with the release of The Razor's Edge. Phil Rudd returned in 1994 (after Chris Slade, who was with the band from 1990–1994, was asked to leave in favour of him) and contributed to the band's 1995 album Ballbreaker. Stiff Upper Lip was released in 2000 and was well received by critics. Since then, the band has stayed the same with the 1980–1983 lineup. The band's next album, Black Ice, was released on 20 October 2008. It was their biggest hit on the charts since For Those About to Rock, reaching #1 on all the charts eventually.AC/DC's newest album, Iron Man 2, soundtrack to the film, was released on 19 April 2010.
As of 2010, AC/DC have sold more than 200 million albums worldwide, as of the releases of their latest albums, Black Ice and Iron Man 2 (soundtrack), including 71 million albums in the United States. Back in Black has sold an estimated 49 million units worldwide, making it the highest-selling album by any band and the second-highest-selling album in history, behind Thriller by Michael Jackson. The album has sold 22 million in the US alone, where it is the fifth-highest-selling album. AC/DC ranked fourth on VH1's list of the "100 Greatest Artists of Hard Rock" and were named the seventh "Greatest Heavy Metal Band of All Time" by MTV. In 2004, AC/DC were ranked number 72 in the Rolling Stone list of the "100 Greatest Artists of All Time".
* 1 History
o 1.1 Background and name
o 1.2 Early years (the Dave Evans era, 1973–1974)
o 1.3 The Bon Scott era (1974–80)
+ 1.3.1 The journey begins (1974–77)
+ 1.3.2 International success (1976–80)
+ 1.3.3 Scott's death (1980)
o 1.4 The Brian Johnson era (1980–present)
+ 1.4.1 The rebirth (1980–83)
+ 1.4.2 Departure of Rudd and commercial decline (1983–87)
+ 1.4.3 Back to commercial success (1987–90)
+ 1.4.4 Popularity regained (1990–94)
+ 1.4.5 Popularity confirmed (1994–2008)
+ 1.4.6 Black Ice (2008–2010)
* 2 Recognition
* 3 Band members
o 3.1 Timeline
* 4 Discography
* 5 Awards and nominations
* 6 See also
* 7 References
* 8 Further reading
* 9 External links
Background and name
Brothers Malcolm, Angus, and George Young were born in Glasgow, Scotland, and moved to Sydney with most of their family in 1963. George was the first to learn to play the guitar. He became a member of the Easybeats, one of Australia's most successful bands of the 1960s. In 1966, they became the first local rock act to have an international hit, with the song "Friday on Malcolm followed in George's footsteps by playing with a Newcastle, New South Wales, band called the Velvet Underground (not to be confused with the New York–based Velvet Underground).
The band's logo was designed in 1977 by Gerard Huerta. It first appeared on the international version of Let There Be Roc
Malcolm and Angus Young developed the idea for the band's name after their older sister, Margaret Young, saw the initials "AC/DC" on a sewing machine. "AC/DC" is an abbreviation for "alternating current/direct current". The brothers felt that this name symbolised the band's raw energy, power-driven performances, and a love for their music."AC/DC" is pronounced one letter at a time, though the band are popularly known as "Acca Dacca" in Australia.
Early years (the Dave Evans era, 1973–1974)
In November 1973 Malcolm and Angus Young formed AC/DC and recruited bassist Larry Van Kriedt, vocalist Dave Evans, and Colin Burgess, ex-Masters Apprentices drummer. Pushing hard for the bands success were Australia’s legendary roady Ray Arnold and his partner Alan Kissack. The two men convinced Chequers entertainment manager Gene Pierson to let the band play at the popular Sydney nightclub on New Year's Eve, 1973. band were so loud however that management complained. Pierson however took an interest, and booked them into the Bondi Lifesaver and other venues where they further developed their stage show. The early line-up of the band changed often; Colin Burgess was the first member fired, and several bassists and drummers passed through the band during the next year.
By this time, Angus Young had adopted his characteristic school-uniform stage outfit. The idea was his sister Margaret's. Angus had tried other costumes, such as Spider-Man, Zorro, a gorilla, and a parody of Superman, named Super-Ang. fact in its early days, most members of the band dressed in some form of glam or satin outfit but this approach was abandoned when it was discovered Melbourne band Skyhooks had already adopted this approach to their stage presentation.
The Young brothers decided that Evans was not a suitable frontman for the group, because they felt he was more of a glam rocker like Gary Glitter. On stage, Evans was occasionally replaced by the band's first manager, Dennis Laughlin, who was the original lead singer with Sherbet prior to Daryl Braithwaite joining the band. Evans did not get along with Laughlin, which also contributed to the band's ill feeling toward Evans.