It’s the anniversary of Bon Scott’s passing today. He crossed over on February 19th, 1980 at only thirty-three years old from alcohol poisoning in London. The last album he recorded with AC/DC was the classic Highway To Hell. That album was one of the first seized on as an example of the excesses of rock n’ roll music during the Satanic Panic, but the band always denied there was anything “devil worship”-y in the message, it was just an ode to the rebellious spirit that the band had lived their lives by.
Rock journalist and paranormal researcher Susan Masino spent a lot of time with Bon and the guys from AC/DC back in the day and we have an in-depth interview with her in Episode 5 of our podcast. She talks about how she still feels the spirit of the legendary singer playing tricks on her sometimes. And Bon Scott ghost stories are the best ghost stories.
In 1997, AC/DC released a special live album called Bonfire near Halloween and in the publicity even held a séance to try and contact the singer from beyond the grave. Brian Johnson (the lead singer who replaced Bon in AC/DC said that Bon had probably a lot better things to do in the afterlife than talk to us mere mortals.
“I think we’re talking about if Bon was there, he’d be too busy shaggin’ something. He’d have all the good lookin’ women up there. He wouldn’t be bothered coming down here.”
Here’s the audio of the radio special séance where psychic Peter James tries to contact Bon Scott’s ghost.
You gotta love a band that’s not afraid to indulge in a little bit of fun after a tragedy, especially because Bon was noted to be such a mischievous character.
While Ozzy Osbourne would write “Suicide Solution” about Bon’s death (the meaning of “solution” in the song means liquid, as in alcohol), the band would hire Brian Johnson as their new singer in April of 1980.
The next album that they recorded was dedicated to their departed friend and it’s cover was just black with no album art as a show of mourning. And it seems if Bon could look down and see his former bandmates, he must have blessed what they did. Back In Black would go on to become the second biggest selling album in history.