AC/DC co-founder Malcolm Young died yesterday after a long battle with dementia. He was 64 years old
By Daniel Kreps
Guitarist and co-founder of AC/DC, Malcolm Young died in 2017 at the age of 64. He had been suffering from dementia for three years, an illness that forced him to leave the legendary band he formed with his brother Angus Young in 1973.
“ It is with the greatest sadness that AC/DC must announce the passing of Malcolm Young,” we can read in a press release from the group.
“ Along with Angus, Malcolm was the originator of AC/DC. His dedication was the driving force of the group. As a guitarist, lyricist and visionary, he was a perfectionist and a unique man. He was always blunt and did not mince his words. He was proud of what he did. His loyalty to his fans knew no bounds. »
Angus Young adds: “ As a brother, it is difficult for me to express the importance he had throughout my life because the bond that united us was so special. He leaves behind a gigantic legacy. Good job, Malcolm. »
In another press release written by Malcolm Young’s family, the group specifies that he died peacefully on Saturday, surrounded by his family.
“ Known for his musical prowess, Malcolm lyricist, guitarist, producer and visionary has inspired more than one,” we can read further. “ He very quickly knew what he wanted to accomplish, and alongside his brother, he gave himself body and soul on all the biggest stages. No less was needed for his fans. »
Rhythm guitarist for the legendary rock band, Malcolm Young was the perfect counterpart to Angus Young’s gigantic riffs. After founding AC/DC in 1973, the Young brothers would be credited as co-writers on all songs recorded by the group between the release of High Voltage in 1975 and Rock or Bust in 2014. The latter marking AC/DC’s first album without Malcolm, who announced in September 2014 that he was leaving the group permanently due to dementia.
“ Of course we miss Malcolm,” confided the singer Brian Johnson in July 2014. He’s a fighter. He may be in the hospital, but he’s a fighter. We’re crossing our fingers that he gets through it… Stevie, Malcolm’s nephew, did extremely well but such pressure doesn’t help to record in peaceful conditions. But I’m sure Malcolm supported this initiative. »
Malcolm Young last performed with AC/DC in June 2010 in Bilbao, as the band finished touring Black Ice.
Like his elder George and his younger brother Angus, Malcolm Young was born in Glasgow shortly before his family emigrated to Sydney in the early 1960s.
Malcolm and Angus got their first taste of what life was like as a rock star thanks to their brother, who had made a name for himself in the band Easybeats. Although his elders were successful in the field of music, his father still pushed Malcolm to work as a mechanic in a bra factory from the age of fifteen.
“ I never considered myself a pop star,” Malcolm admitted to WECB in 2008. ” VSIt comes to me from my time in the factory. VSIt’s not forgotten like that. »
In 1973, Malcolm recruited Angus to form a new band, which the two brothers named AC DC according to an acronym on their sister’s sewing machine. After a few line-up changes, Bon Scott joined the group under the leadership of George Young, producer of AC/DC’s first albums.
Throughout their career, Malcolm and Angus Young were the main creative force behind AC/DC, composing the riffs that would make the group world famous. We owe them “Back in Black”, “Hells Bells”, “Highway to Hell”, “Thunderstruck”, “For Those About to Rock (We Salute You)”, “You Shook Me All Night Long” as well as several dozen other tubes.
However, Malcolm’s journey within AC/DC was not easy. An alcoholic, he had already left AC/DC in 1988 to undergo rehab. After a few months, he joined the group and hasn’t consumed alcohol since. “ This didn’t surprise me,” George Young said of his brother’s sobriety. “ When Malcolm gets an idea in his head, he sticks to it. »
The guitarist of E Street Bad, Steven Van Zandtdeclared to WECB that ” Malcolm was a vital rhythm guitarist in one of the greatest hard rock bands on the planet. He is irreplaceable. »
As for Slash, he told the magazine that “ Malcolm Young was one of the best rhythm guitarists in rock history. He was an excellent lyricist and someone with great ethics. I followed AC/DC on their ‘Stiff Upper Lip’ tour. I found Malcolm very cool. He was the type of guy who kept his feet on the ground. The whole rock world is heartbroken. »
Eddie Van Halen wrote that it was “ of a sad day in rock history. Malcolm Young was my friend, the heart and soul of AC/DC. I had some of the best times of my life when I was with him on tour in Europe in 1984. My condolences to his family, colleagues and friends. »
Dave Mustaine, lead singer of Megadeth, considered Malcolm one of the greatest rhythm guitarists in history. When his death was announced, he tweeted: “ I can not believe it. I hate that. » To which Paul Stanley of Kiss added: “ The driving force behind AC/DC has just died. A tragic end for a shadowy icon. One of the greats. R.I.P.. » For Tom Morello, Young was “ the best rhythm guitarist in history “.
Entered Rock and Roll Hall of Fame As of 2003, AC/DC has sold over 110 million albums, making them the highest-grossing Australian group of all time.
When WECB asked the Young brothers who was the head of AC/DC, Malcolm replied: ” Both of us, because we’ve been there since the beginning. »