AC/DC’s Brian Johnson Releasing New Memoir, ‘The Lives of Brian,’ in October (Preview)


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Rock Cellar Magazine
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AC/DC vocalist and bona fide rock and roll legend Brian Johnson has been accomplished a great deal over the course of his 73+ years on Earth, and he’s compiled his stories and experiences into an official autobiography, The Lives of Brian.

Announced this week, the memoir will be released on October 26, and comes with a trailer and an official statement from the iconic singer known for his unmistakable presence on the microphone:

I’ve had some long nights and some great nights, bad days and a lot of good ones. I’ve gone from choirboy to rock ‘n’ roll singer, and now I’ve gone and written a bloody book about it …

Of course, Johnson’s emergence as a powerhouse rock singer came during a fraught time for AC/DC, which had suffered the loss of original singer Bon Scott. Johnson assumed lead vocal duties in 1980 with AC/DC entering a new era … and promptly releasing Back in Black, the band’s first album with Johnson and a record that would change the group’s trajectory forever.

In 2016, Brian Johnson stepped back from the band due to hearing loss, and many feared it marked the end of his career. However, he underwent treatment and eventually resumed work — leading AC/DC on its path to roaring back in 2020 with Power Up, the group’s raucous new studio album released in November.

He’s seen it all, from the highs and lows to everything in between, and there’s no doubt The Lives of Brian will be an excellent read. Here’s a bit more insight, per its Amazon item listing:

Brian Johnson’s memoir from growing up in a small town to starting his own band to ultimately replacing Bon Scott, the lead singer of one of the world biggest rock acts, AC/DC. They would record their first album together, the iconic Back in Black, which would become the biggest selling rock album of all time.

Brian Johnson was born to a steelworker and WWII veteran father and an Italian mother, growing up in New Castle Upon Tyne, England, a working-class town. He was musically inclined and sang with the church choir. By the early ’70s he performed with the glam rock band Geordie, and they had a couple hits, but it was tough going. So tough that by 1976, they disbanded and Brian turned to a blue-collar life.

Then 1980 changed everything. Bon Scott, the lead singer and lyricist of the Australian rock band AC/DC died at 33. The band auditioned singers, among them Johnson, whom Scott himself had seen perform and raved about. Within days, Johnson was in a studio with the band, working with founding members Angus and Malcolm Young, Cliff Williams, and Phil Rudd, along with producer Mutt Lange.

When the album, Back in Black, was released in July—a mere three months after Johnson had joined the band—it exploded, going on to sell 50 million copies worldwide, and triggering a years-long worldwide tour. It has been declared “the biggest selling hard rock album ever made” and “the best-selling heavy-metal album in history.”

The band toured the world for a full year to support the album, changing the face of rock music—and Brian Johnson’s life—forever.


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