Macleay College lecturer Jesse Fink spoke to Sydney Writers’ Festival (SWF) crowds about his third book The Youngs: The Brothers Who Built AC/DC and reflected on the life and times of Australia’s biggest rock exports, AC/DC.
“I was dissatisfied by those other stories (on the shelves). I wanted to make people see AC/DC in a different way,” Fink said when asked why he chose to write about a rock band that had already been covered in every form of written media.
The Youngs includes interviews with former bass player Mark Evans, who has famously taken AC/DC to court in recent years, “I had a lot of trouble convincing him to be interviewed…” Fink said.
Despite the difficulty of getting any response to emails, Fink said it was all worthwhile when a chance meeting on the street led him to glean previously unknown information about the band from Evans.
“He told me that Bon Scott nearly got sacked for a heroin overdose,” Fink said, a revelation that went against the image painted by the band of Scott as an irreplaceable figure.
The intimate Q&A, part of the SWF event at Philharmonia Studio started with Fink recalling his own experiences as a fan of AC/DC.
“One night I wanted to walk out in front of a car, I could have gone out and done that, but I put on some AC/DC instead,” said Fink.
Sentiment’s like this paved the way for Finks’ book The Youngs, which looks at the untold stories associated with the band and brothers Angus, Malcolm and George Young, including interviews with the un-accredited session drummer for album High Voltage - a humble pizza maker named Tony Currenti from Western Sydney who attended the SWF event.
When asked why he never pursued royalties or took up the offer of joining the band when AC/DC reached international fame Currenti said, “I wasn’t entitled to royalties... I got paid to do a job and I did it.”
Written by Macleay College Journalism student Rebekah Day