Angus Young Reveals Why Axl Rose Had No Chance Of Staying in AC/DC

Axl Rose and Angus Young

Angus Young Talks Axl Rose Staying in AC/DC

AC/DC guitarist Angus Young discussed Guns N’ Roses frontman Axl Rose and how the topic of continuing the band with Rose was never an option telling Ultimate Guitar:

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 that Axl Rose becoming AC/DC’s full-time singer “never really came up.

“Axl was really very generous, and he helped us out to get through our touring side at a difficult spot. He had contacted us and said he could help if it didn’t interfere with his own commitments of what he was going.”

He wanted to come in and try songs that he himself liked, and he was suggesting songs I hadn’t played in a long time. I’m definitely grateful that he volunteered, and that had helped us finish off our commitment. But he has his own life.”

AC/DC’s latest album “Power Up” is due out November 13th, 2020 and is the band’s first album in 6 years. Their last release was 2014s “Rock or Bust.”

The Guns N’ Roses Era Band Enuff Z’Nuff Had a Rough Career

One of the brightest bands to sprout up in the late 80’s was Chicago based Enuff Z’Nuff. Led by the charismatic duo of bassist Chip Z’Nuff and singer and guitarist Donnie Vie, the band was listed by Rolling Stone magazine as the hot band of hte year in 1991, but they quickly crashed and burned. Check out Rock N’ Roll True Stories video about the band below!

This is a fan request and I’ve been meaning to do a story on these guys because i definitely feel like their music is underappreciated and misunderstood. Enuff Z Nuff would be lumped in with the hair metal party towards the end of the genre’s demise in the late 80’s and early 90’s. When they first popped up on the scene the band were hailed as the next big thing, but their self-destructive tendencies torpedoed their trajectory. Bassist chip z nuff would summarize the band’s career by saying,It’s been ten steps forward and thirty steps back.”  Stay tuned to find out the full story.

 

Led by the charismatic pairing of bassist Chip Z Nuff and vocalist Donnie Vie the band were more power pop than glam as they would blend the styles of the beatles and cheap trick for the hair metal generation, Enuf Z Nuff career failures were made up of every rock n’ roll cliche – drugs, infighting, a revolving cast of band members , bad business decisions and death.

 

The band’s humble roots date back to Chicago in 1983. Bassist Chip Z Nuff would hook up with a guitar player and singer named Donnie Vie who was 5 years his junior and came from a broken home. The pair would put a band together and Chip Z Nuff would recall the band’s early days saying to Louder sound in 2019 “The bond was unbreakable,The task at hand was: ‘Let’s write some great songs.’” We knew we had a good sound. We were very flamboyant, very colourful, we looked great.They would find another guitarist and drummer and They would come up with the name Enough Z’ Nuff before shortening it to Enuff Z’ Nuff. 

 

The band would move into a cheap house, buy a drum machine and start writing music. They would never play by the books by renting out a studio and recording music,, instead as bassist enuff z nuff would tell loudersound they  would sneak into a studio at lake geneva in wisconcin at 2 in the morning and record demos after everyone else had left.

The band would compile a demo called Hollywood Squares and send it to the major labels but no one seemed interested at first. Several years into their career they would cement their classic lineup with the addition of guitarist Derek Frigo and drummer Vikki Fox in 1988. Along with their new lineup came substance abuse problems. Enuff Z Nuff would tell Loudersound

“Everyone was fairly jacked up, found myself always trying to break up fights, trying to keep the drug dealers away from the band. I tried to make the road a little bit smoother for us. It never was, it was constantly bumpy.”

.  Performing around Chicago, Enuff Z’Nuff‘s first break came when they were approached by local filmmaker John McNaughton about including their song Fingers On It” on the soundtrack to his independent film called Henry: Portrait of a Serial . Unfortunately for the band, the movie ran into censorship issues and would remain shelved for 4 years. Towards the end of the 80’s the Atlantic Records owned label Atco signed the band.

Released in 1989, the band’s self titled debut album featured two hit songs including  “New Thing” and their biggest hit “Fly High Michelle,” Soon enough the band was being featured on MTV, on TV Shows and their record sold a cool half a million albums. While there was a lot to celebrate the band members grew frustrated with how they were labelled as a hair metal band. Frontman Donny Vie would tell legendary rock interviews

we were true power pop and had we stayed on that path I think we would have had more longevity, a more stable career than the whole path we later got started on. We got signed at the worst possible time in the whole metal frenzy. With a major label there’s a whole marketing angle that you could never imagine and they’re not at all into music or trained in that but what they do know is how to sell something. So they’re looking at us and I think for the first time in a long time they had no idea where to go with us or how to “package” us.

Bad marketing aside, the band was stunned when their label Atco gave them a bill for $800K. The band signed a bad deal and weren’t selling enough albums to pay back their label..

Not helping things were the band’s growing drug dependency. While bassist Chip Z Nuff never was a heavy user, it would be the rest of the band spiralling out of control. “

The band would release one more album with Atco records, 1991’s Strength. The album stalled at number 143 on the bilboard charts but the album got a lot of attention from Rolling Stones magazine who named the group hot band of the year.

With the group not making enough money and their debt growing larger they had no option than to declare bankruptcy. It was a move that other artists have done and it allowed Enuff Z Nuff to get out of their one sided record contract. Chip Z Nuff would tell Loudersound Here we are, making great records, touring the country,” “It was everything we wished for, yet we’ve got no dough. On top of that, because of our problems with substance abuse we weren’t focusing on the stuff that was all around us business-wise.”

It would be industry mogul clive davis who came to the band’s rescue signing the band to arista records in 1993. The night prior to the band meeting with Davis to secure a record deal frontman Donnie Vie was arrested on drug posession charges. Despite the arrest he still made it to the meeting with Chip Z Nuff telling Louder sound . he went with us. Clive said: ‘I don’t care what it takes to get that vocal out of your brother, make it happen.’”

Their deal would be short lived as they would only release one album with Arista, 1993’s Animals with Human Intelligence, which didn’t get a ton of support from the label, resulting in the album not being as successful as their two previous releases, but the band found success overseas in Japan. By 1994 the band was dropped by their label and they once again found themselves in debt, dealing with addiction and depression. As a last hail mary the band re-released their 1985 demos as the next official Enuff Z Nuff album and the move paid off. The album performed well enough in America and was a huge hit in Japan to turn their fortunes around.

The band would soldier on for the next half a decade through a revolving cast of lineup changes and new albums through a variety of independent labels. In 1999 the band would release Paraphanelia that featured some fellow artists from their hometown of Chicago including Billy Corgan of the Smashing Pumpkins, Styx guitarist James Young and Cheap Trick’s Rick Neilsen. How Chip Z Nuff got Billy Corgan to appear on the album was a bit of a surprise as the pair met at a funeral with the bassist remembering to Loudersound

“I met Billy at a funeral, and said: ‘Are you aware of my band, Enuff Z’Nuff?’” he says. “He goes: ‘Are you kidding? I got the Strength album in my car right now.’ I thought maybe if I get some of the musicians in Chicago to come in and cameo on the record it would help elevate Enuff Z’Nuff’s name.”

Unfortunately for the band the record didn’t get much recognition and the band’s woes continued. New record labels, lineup changes and death soon greeted the band in the years that followed. By 2004 it appeared that the classic lineup would be touring together once again, but on the eve of the tour Guitarist Derek Frigo who left the band in 1993 died of a drug overdose in 2004. In 2007, Drummer Ricky Parent who had been in the band for 12 years would lose his life due to cancer in 2007. Singer Donnie Vie didn’t seem far behind. Vie struggled immensely with substance abuse and his relationship with Chip Z Nuff seemed to be complicated. Despite quitting the band in  2002 to pursue a solo career, he would still record with the group.

The pair would reunite in 2006 again to release a new album titled Disonnance and tour extensively, but Vie was once again done with the band in 2013 leaving again for good. .

What was a source of tension between Vie and Chip Z Nuff? “He had a problem with being upstaged,” Vie would tell Loudersound. “To this day he goes around claiming he wrote all the songs. He really didn’t. He made a very minimal contribution. Chip was a great player and a star, but he wasn’t an artist.”

Vie for his part would struggle with substance abuse for a lot of his adult life and it wasn’t until a few years ago after being arrested on a flight in Europe for outstanding warrant charges that he finally decided to clean up his act.

How does chip z nuff see the feud with his former singer? He wold tell loveispop this year Donnie Vie’s never been out of Enuff Z’Nuff. He left for a while in 2013, which is sad. I never envisioned an ending for my brother and I. I love him dearly. I think – in my opinion and in other rock star’s opinion as well – he’s one of the greatest singers of our generation.But basically in 2013 in Sesame Street terms he got disillusioned by the business. And he had some health issues and he’s been battling them ever since – please say a prayer for him. He’s been playing. I know he’s doing a solo record. He’s been coming up with ideas and he’s got wonderful songs. He does not need me when it comes to songs.

As recently as this year Chip Z nuff would release their latest album titled “Brainwashed Generation.” It does appear that the Chip Z Nuff and Donny Vie’s relationship is still deeply fracture with Chiptelling Loudersound “The only time we talk is when it has to do with money, and it’s always through his manager, who is his brother-in-law,” “I love the guy, but I don’t feel that love is reciprocated.”