Unraveling the Mystery: Bon Scott’s Influence on AC/DC’s ‘Back in Black’
AC/DC’s “Back in Black” stands as a testament to their resilience and creativity, being one of the highest-selling albums in music history. The album, released in 1980, is not just known for its commercial success but also for the intense scrutiny it has received over the years.
The Transition Period: From Bon Scott to Brian Johnson
The album’s production began while Bon Scott, AC/DC’s original lead singer, was still alive. Tragically, Scott passed away in February 1980, leading to the band recruiting Brian Johnson as the new frontman. Johnson is credited with writing the lyrics for “Back in Black”, but fans have speculated about the presence of Scott’s lyrical style in the album.
Fan Theories and Denials
Among fans, there’s a long-standing belief that some of the album’s lyrics bear the hallmark of Bon Scott’s writing style. Despite these theories, the official stance from AC/DC has consistently been a denial of Scott’s direct involvement in the album’s lyrical content.
Mark Opitz: Adding Fuel to Speculation
Mark Opitz, an iconic producer known for engineering AC/DC’s “Powerage” album, has added a new dimension to this debate. Opitz recalls observing Scott’s songwriting process, where he often used notes and lyric books. According to Opitz, certain songs from “Back in Black”, particularly “You Shook Me All Night Long”, resonate strongly with Scott’s lyrical style.
Listen Below: Exploring the Writing Process
For a deeper understanding of this intriguing aspect of AC/DC’s history, “Behind The Hits” offers exclusive insights. Mark Opitz shares his perspectives on the band’s writing process and the possible influence of Bon Scott on “Back in Black”.
This December marks the 50th anniversary of AC/DC’s first gig, and “Behind the Hits” celebrates this milestone with a 3-part series delving deep into the different eras of AC/DC’s remarkable career.
Episode 1 – AC/DC: The Bon Scott Era: This episode offers an exclusive look into the rockstar life of Bon Scott, one of Australia’s greatest frontmen. It features insights from AC/DC band members including Bon Scott himself, Angus and Malcolm Young, and Mark Evans.
Episode 2 – AC/DC: The Brian Johnson Era: Transitioning from the Bon Scott era, this episode explores the band’s evolution with Brian Johnson as the lead vocalist, marking a new chapter in their storied history.
Episode 3 – AC/DC: Beyond a Band of Brothers: The final episode delves into the band’s deep connections, exploring the dynamics that made them more than just a group of musicians.
Hear firsthand accounts from the band members and key industry figures like Iva Davies, Molly Meldrum, Michael Chugg, Michael Browning, Mark Opitz, and Fifa Riccobono. This series offers an unparalleled glimpse into the behind-the-scenes moments and pivotal events in the band’s journey.