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Brian Johnson says AC/DC not disbanding, but illness taints future

Brian Johnson says AC/DC not disbanding, but illness taints future
AC/DC lead singer Brian Johnson, center, Scottish guitarist Malcom Young, left, and his brother Angus Young, shown performing in Switzerland in 2009. Johnson has dismissed reports that the group is disbanding because of Malcolm Young's health. (Ennio Leanza / EPA)

AC/DC lead singer Brian Johnson has told a British newspaper that rumors of the band’s impending breakup are only that.

"We are definitely getting together in May in Vancouver," Johnson told the U.K.'s Telegraph. "We're going to pick up some guitars, have a plonk, and see if anybody has got any tunes or ideas. If anything happens, we'll record it."

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Reports that the long-running Australian rock band would be calling it quits revolved around news that guitarist Malcom Young, lead guitarist Angus Young's older brother, is seriously ill.

In the interview with the Telegraph, Johnson did confirm that one of the band's members has "a debilitating illness" that could affect how AC/DC moves forward.

"I wouldn't like to say anything either way about the future," Johnson said. "I'm not ruling anything out. One of the boys has a debilitating illness, but I don't want to say too much about it. He is very proud and private, a wonderful chap. We've been pals for 35 years and I look up to him very much."

The band subsequently released a statement identifying that band member as Malcolm Young, 61.

"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," the statement said. "Malcolm would like to thank the group's diehard legions of fans worldwide for their never-ending love and support."

Johnson also told the Telegraph, "AC/DC is such a tight family. We've stuck to our guns through the Eighties and Nineties when people were saying we should change our clothes and our style. But we didn't and people got it that we are the real deal."

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