Was Angus Young Really Still a Teenager When AC/DC Signed Their First Record Contract?

Here is the latest in a series of examinations into urban legends about movies and whether they are true or false. Click here to view an archive of the movie urban legends featured so far.

MUSIC URBAN LEGEND: Angus Young was still a teenager when AC/DC signed their first record contract.

AC/DC is a highly successful Australian rock and roll band that was formed in 1973, with their first album, High Voltage, released in 1975.

As you can see from the cover of their album, one of the most notable aspect of the group, at least from a publicity standpoint, was the schoolboy outfit that lead guitarist, Angus Young, wore. The look is so iconic that Young still wears the outfit today!

The outfit came about when Young determined that every member of the band should have a “gimmick.” His older sister, Margaret (Angus’ brother Malcolm co-founded the band with Angus) came up with the school boy look. The outfit is his uniform from his days at Ashfield Boys High School in Sydney.

His age played into a story about when the band signed its first contract.

Angus was 18 years old when the band was founded, and he was 20 when the band was signed to a record label and released their first album. However, it was determined that it sounded a lot cooler for Young to be still a teenager, so press releases for the band stated that Young was 16 years old, not 20.

Even today, decades later, Young’s birth date is frequently listed as 1959 instead of his actual year of 1955.

Isn’t it fascinating to see how far a publicity stunt can travel? Once information is published, I guess it sticks around forever!!

The legend is…


Feel free (heck, I implore you!) to write in with your suggestions for future installments! My e-mail address is bcronin@legendsrevealed.com.

3 Responses to “Was Angus Young Really Still a Teenager When AC/DC Signed Their First Record Contract?”

  1. Typo in the “Angus” after “Music Urban Legend”

  2. Thanks, fixed it!

  3. Actually, the Australian version of High Voltage was released in February of 1975, when Angus was a month and change shy of 20, and they had released a non-album single in July of 1974..

Leave a Reply