Why a Decades Old AC/DC Song Might Be Returning to the Charts
Not many things make us happier than when our favorite songs achieve great success, but could there be a wonderful Christmas present about to happen for AC/DC fans? In the U.K., you might expect a push of a classic AC/DC track returning to the charts over the coming weeks, that is if a couple of fan-driven social media movements achieve their goals.
Why Are AC/DC Fans Championing a Song's Return to the Charts?
While chart-watching can be somewhat of an obsession for music lovers in different parts of the world, in the U.K., the Christmas-week chart every year has become something of great prestige. Historically, the volume of record sales peak in the U.K. over the Christmas week, and eventually there started to become great rivalries and fan and record company-backed campaigns to achieve the No. 1 spot.
Over the years, everything from charity tracks, to pop hits to singing competition standouts and more have sought to achieve the top spot, while there have also been campaigns launched to keep certain pop favorites out of No. 1. One of the most well-known campaigns came in 2009 when fans rallied behind Rage Against the Machine's "Killing in the Name" added another layer of rebellion, as fans fought to ensure that X Factor winner Joe McElderry from achieving the feat. Rage famously reactivated after a period of inactivity for a one-off show to share their thanks to the fans that returned the song to the charts 27 years after its initial release.
That brings us to AC/DC! Seeing how fans responded to get Rage Against the Machine to No. 1 likely inspired rock fans to see if lightning could strike again. A campaign page named AC/DC We Salute You was launched with the specific goal of getting one of their songs to the top of the charts back in 2013. "Highway to Hell" was the chosen song, and while it didn't ultimately reach that goal, it did return the classic AC/DC song to the charts. Now the same campaign page is ready to give it another run a decade later.
“In 2013 we all came together to celebrate 40 years of AC/DC by giving them their highest ever UK Singles Chart placing… 'Highway To Hell' at No.4. Well, we’re going to choose another track and see if we can get 3 places higher for their 50th anniversary. Are you in? If so join this group and invite everyone,” read a message posted over the last week.
This time around, it appears as though there's additional support to get AC/DC some prime spotlight on the U.K. charts, as a Facebook group titled AC/DC for Christmas No. 1 has joined in the push.
What AC/DC Song Should Make a Run at No. 1 in 2023?
Both fan-driven groups did not initially hand-pick a song, rather letting the fanbase have the say in what song they would get behind for this year's push. While nothing is official yet, both sites appear to be leaning toward AC/DC's 33 year old track "Thunderstruck" from the 1990 album, The Razors Edge.
On the AC/DC We Salute You Facebook page, a poll has narrowed it down to two tracks - "Thunderstruck" and "It's a Long Way to the Top" - with "Thunderstruck" emerging with a significant lead in the voting.
Meanwhile, AC/DC's "Thunderstruck" was also garnering quite a bit of commentary over on the AC/DC for Christmas No. 1 page as well, with the group also sharing the AC/DC We Salute You poll. "Back in Black," "Too Much Touch," "Hells Bells" and "Mistress for Christmas" were also songs among the most suggested by fans.
Expect an AC/DC song to be chosen soon, bringing a classic cut back into the spotlight in the U.K. this holiday season.
Who Would Be AC/DC's Competition?
While there will always be plenty of support thrown behind classic Christmas songs such as Mariah Carey's "All I Want for Christmas Is You" and Wham's "Last Christmas," it appears the group has a specific act they feel might be their biggest competition. In signing off their recent message about reviving the AC/DC Christmas No. 1 campaign, organizers noted, "Big Balls to LadBaby."
For those unaware, LadBaby came to fame as a YouTuber, musician and blogger, who has captured the Christmas U.K. No. 1 crown for every year between 2018 and 2022 with a series of novelty songs often based around food, in particular the sausage roll. "We Built This City," "I Love Sausage Rolls," "Don't Stop Me Eatin'," "Sausage Rolls for Everyone" and "Food Aid" have all taken the title, and with five straight Christmas No. 1 chart-toppers, he's surpassed the record held by The Beatles, who had four Christmas No. 1's.
What Are AC/DC Up To?
It's been a topsy-turvy few years for AC/DC, who saw drummer Phil Rudd absent while dealing with legal problems and singer Brian Johnson fall out mid-tour due to hearing loss issues on their Rock or Bust support. At the end of the run, bassist Cliff Williams also announced his retirement.
But, in 2020, Angus Young was able to gather Williams, Rudd and Johnson, who found a solution to help his hearing issues, back for the new album, Power Up. Stevie Young, who had previously replaced the late Malcolm Young, rounded out the lineup.
Back in October of this year, AC/DC reunited on the concert stage for the first time since the conclusion of their 2016 touring in support of Rock or Bust, playing the Power Trip Festival. No additional dates have been announced.
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Gallery Credit: Loudwire Staff