Speculation is buzzing about the potential absence of AC/DC bassist Cliff Williams from the highly anticipated 2024 tour, with rock and roll comedian Dean Delray, an avid AC/DC enthusiast and reliable source, hinting at the possibility of a new bass player joining the iconic group for the upcoming shows.
Delray, known for his deep connection to AC/DC and past interviews with band members, took to social media on January 27 to share the intriguing update. He refrained from disclosing the new bassist’s identity, leaving the revelation to AC/DC, but he emphasized that Cliff Williams had signaled his departure from touring during a podcast appearance three years ago. Delray expressed gratitude to Williams for his over 40 years of rocking the bass and contributing a killer groove to AC/DC’s legendary sound.
Cliff Williams announced his retirement after AC/DC’s 2015-2016 “Rock Or Bust” tour, a period that also saw vocalist Brian Johnson stepping down due to hearing issues, subsequently replaced by Axl Rose for the remaining shows. Despite their retirements from touring, both Williams and Johnson were crucial to the recording of AC/DC’s 2020 album, “Power Up.” They also participated in the band’s first concert in over seven years at the Power Trip festival in 2023.
Williams’ decision to contribute to the “Power Up” recording sessions was a heartfelt homage to Malcolm Young, AC/DC’s founding rhythm guitarist and Angus Young’s late brother, who passed away in 2017. Malcolm is credited as a writer on all 12 tracks of “Power Up.”
While AC/DC is yet to officially announce the 2024 tour dates, speculation suggests they are considering multiple global performances. In November, Munich’s mayor, Dieter Reiter, inadvertently disclosed that AC/DC is scheduled to perform at the city’s Olympic Stadium on June 12, 2024.
The uncertainty extends to drummer Phil Rudd’s participation in the tour. Rudd, who returned for the recording of “Power Up,” was temporarily replaced by drummer Matt Laug at the Power Trip festival. No official explanation was provided for Rudd’s absence, but speculation points to his past legal troubles, including a 2015 guilty plea to threatening charges and drug possession.
Rudd’s legal team argued that his home confinement sentence was disproportionately damaging to his music career, preventing him from reuniting with AC/DC. However, the judge remained unsympathetic to these concerns, emphasizing the band’s ability to replace members. The dynamics within AC/DC continue to unfold as fans eagerly await official announcements regarding the lineup for the upcoming tour.