December 4, 2021

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AC/DC Singer Brian Johnson to Issue ‘The Lives of Brian’ Memoir


Fans of AC/DC are in for a treat when lead singer Brian Johnson releases a book about his storied early career, The Lives of Brian, on Oct. 26.

For those about to read, the memoir titled similarly to a Monty Python film will give AC/DC devotees the chance to learn more about the powerful vocalist’s long way to the top. To be published in the U.S. by Dey Street Books, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers, and in the U.K. by Penguin Michael Joseph, part of Penguin Random House, the 320-page tome will focus on Johnson’s joining of AC/DC and subsequent recording of Back in Black with the band.

Watch a video preview for the book down toward the bottom of this post.

“I’ve had some long nights and some great nights, bad days and a lot of good ones,” Johnson said in a statement announcing the memoir on Monday (April 12). “I’ve gone from choirboy to rock ‘n’ roll singer, and now I’ve gone and written a bloody book about it.”

Indeed, per the publisher, the gook will look at Johnson’s life “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’s biggest rock acts, AC/DC. They would record their first album together, the iconic Back in Black” – it would become one of the best selling rock albums ever.

“Brian’s memoir captures an unforgettable moment in rock history,” offered Mauro DiPreta, SVP and executive editor of William Morrow Group, a related HarperCollins branch. “Anyone who wants to understand Brian’s roots as well as the moment of ignition when he joined AC/DC and helped create a monster album will be in for an unforgettable ride.”

Pre-orders for The Lives of Brian are available now. Read the official synopsis and see the book cover below.

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.

Brian Johnson, The Lives of Brian Preview Video

Brian Johnson, The Lives of Brian Book Cover

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