Artist Catalog

Brian Johnson

Born: October 5 1947
Born in: Dunston, Tyne and Wear
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Brian Johnson

Brian Francis Johnson (born 5 October 1947) is an English singer and songwriter. In 1980, he became the third lead singer of the Australian rock band AC/DC after the death of their second lead singer Bon Scott. He and the rest of the band were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2003. In March 2016, Johnson stepped down from touring on the Rock or Bust World Tour due to hearing problems. On 20 May 2016, Johnson stated in an interview "I've had a pretty good run" in AC/DC and implied that he might not be returning by saying "I'm just thankful, really, that I came out of it in one piece."

Johnson was one of the founding members of the rock band Geordie formed in Newcastle in 1971. After a few hit singles, including UK Top 10 "All Because of You" (1973), the band split up in 1978. Following the death of AC/DC lead singer Bon Scott on 19 February 1980, Johnson was asked to audition for the band in London. AC/DC lead guitarist and co-founder Angus Young recalled: "I remember Bon playing me Little Richard, and then telling me the story of when he saw Brian singing [with Geordie]." He says about that night: "There's this guy up there screaming at the top of his lungs and then the next thing you know he hits the deck. He's on the floor, rolling around and screaming. I thought it was great, and then to top it off – you couldn't get a better encore – they came in and wheeled the guy off!'" Johnson was diagnosed with appendicitis later that night, which was the cause of his writhing around on stage. The band agreed immediately that Johnson's performing style fit AC/DC's music. Johnson's first album with AC/DC, Back in Black, became the second all-time best-selling album worldwide according to some estimates.

A native of Tyneside, northeast England, Johnson is known for his strong Geordie accent. In July 2014 he was awarded an honorary degree of Doctor of Music by Northumbria University in his home city Newcastle in recognition of his significant contribution to the music industry.
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