Spotted on USA Today:
The rumors about legendary AC/DC guitarist Malcolm Young being ill are true. But the rumors about AC/DC retiring from music are not.
On Wednesday, the band posted a statement on its website:
“After forty years of life dedicated to AC/DC, guitarist and founding member Malcolm Young is taking a break from the band due to ill health. Malcolm would like to thank the group’s diehard legions of fans worldwide for their never-ending love and support.
“In light of this news, AC/DC asks that Malcolm and his family’s privacy be respected during this time. The band will continue to make music.”
While the band would not reveal Young’s illness, their close friend, Choirboys frontman Mark Gable, told Australia’s ABC Radio that his condition is very serious.
“That is true, Malcolm is sick,” Gable told ABC radio Wednesday morning. “From what I understand, and it’s even been confirmed in part by his son Ross (Young), that it would appear Malcolm is unable to perform anymore.
“It’s not just that he is unwell, it’s that it is quite serious. It will constitute that he definitely won’t be able to perform live.
“He will probably not be able to record.”
A person who goes by the screen name Thunderstruck started the rumors via e-mail to Australian radio station 6PR. ”My information is that Malcolm Young has moved himself and his family back to Australia, he’s very very ill and that AC/DC may well be history,” Thunderstruck told 6PR on Tuesday morning. ”I have extremely good contacts in Europe that are very close to AC/DC. I have it on very good authority that one of the band members is quite ill and has returned to Australia with his family.”
Reports of Young’s illness sparked the retirement rumors because the band made a pact that they would not replace any of the members should one of them leave.
The 61-year-old co-founded the band along with brother Angus in 1973. He has played with them continuously except during the 1988 Blow Up Your Video World Tour, when he was recovering from alcoholism.