AC/DC guitarist Angus Young says the band did not fire Brian Johnson after his hearing issue hit the crisis point in March, despite rumours to the contrary.
Last month, the group announced Axl Rose would step in to replace the singer on the Rock Or Bust tour, while Johnson issued his own statement confirming the severity of his health issue.
Young and bassist Cliff Williams clarify what went down with Johnson’s departure in a newly-released video.
Young explains: “You get a lot of rumors out there; a lot of people think Brian was fired. That’s not the case. It was mainly his hearing. He already had a very bad ear, and the good ear that he had left was dropping rapidly. I mean, it was an ongoing issue all the way pretty much through the tour from the beginning.”
Williams continues: “He had an instance where there was a marked drop in that one good ear and it came back, but not completely. The doc told him this can happen again and it may not come back. So, you know, you kind of go ‘What do you do with that?’”
The guitarist adds: “It was out of our hands. It was his call, what he felt.”
Rose will be on board for AC/DC’s 12-date European run and the to-be-rescheduled US dates sometime later this year, and is willing to continue with the group beyond 2016 if there’s a place for him.
Rose tells the BBC: “There’s makeup dates in the States, and if I don’t get thrown out before then, I’m looking forward to doing them.
“I think after that, it’s about what they wanna do. I’m in if they want me in, and we’ll sort it out, but right now that’s getting ahead of ourselves with everything else that’s on the table.”
AC/DC European tour dates with Axl Rose
May 07: Lisbon Passeio Maritimo De Alges, Portugal
May 10: Seville Estadio De La Cartuja, Spain
May 13: Marseille Stade Velodrome, France
May 16: Werchter Site, Belgium
May 19: Vienna Erns-Happel Stadium, Austria
May 22: Prague Letnany Airport, Czech Republic
May 26: Hamburg Volksparkstadion, Germany
May 29: Berne Stade De Suisse, Switzerland
Jun 01: Leipzig Red Bull Arena, Germany
Jun 04: London Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, UK
Jun 09: Manchester Etihad Stadium, UK
Jun 12: Aarhus Ceres Park, Denmark