Bon Scott

Ronald Belford Scott was born on 9 July, 1946 in Forfar Scotland and grew up in Kirriemuir.

In 1952, the Scott family moved to Melbourne Australia and Ronald attended the Sunshine school.

Finally settling in Fremantle, Western Australia in 1956, Bon attended North Fremantle Primary School where he first garnered the nickname “Bon” – a reference to either Bonnie Scotland or a Bonnie Scot. He joined the Fremantle Scots Pipe Band, learning drums and was exposed to fife and recorder.

Bon’s early music career started with drumming in The Spektors and co-lead singing in The Valentines, two bands where Bon developed musicially. Both were fundamentally cover bands, releasing versions of songs by The Easybeats, The Foundations, and others. In an era before a properly global music business, a band like The Valentines could have an Australian hit with a track like Build Me Up Buttercup – complete with local TV performances and matching one-piece jumpsuits – and an entire country would think it was their song. Bon started writing original songs during his time in The Valentines, before they disbanded in 1970.

After The Valentines split, Bon was invited to join Fraternity by bassist Bruce Howe. The band had a residency at Jonathan’s night club in Sydney. They played longer songs vaguely in the progressive rock vein, with Bon singing and playing recorder on their arrangement of Seasons Of Change. Fraternity would move to Adelaide under the management of music entrepreneur Hamish Henry and would headline his outdoor music festival Myponga ’71 with Black Sabbath. Fraternity became one of Australia’s premier bands, winning Go-Set magazine’s “The Next Big Band” honour and gaining a dedicated prime time national TV special.

The band won the prestigious Hoadley’s Battle of The Sounds and would journey to England after their great success in Australia.

After Fraternity split, Bon had a motor bike accident and gradually went back to doing odd jobs. His friend Vince Lovegrove from The Valentines had heard from George Young that an up-and-coming band from Sydney called AC/DC were looking for a new singer. Vince got Bon to join the band onstage at the Pooraka Hotel (now The Bridgeway) in Adelaide and there was an instant bond over Little Richard, Chuck Berry, and the shared Scottish roots of the Scotts and the Young brothers, Angus and Malcolm.

From 1974 to 1979, AC/DC released an astonishing catalog of 6 studio albums. Songs like It’s A Long Way To The Top (If You Wanna Rock n Roll), Big Balls, Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap, T.N.T., Jailbreak, Let There Be Rock, Whole Lotta Rosie and of course Highway To Hell are undisputed classics in rock history.

Sadly, Bon passed away on February 19, 1980 just weeks after the conclusion of the Highway To Hell tour. Over 40 years later and Bon is heralded as one of rock’s greatest front men of all time and his influence is still felt today.

Albums

Singles & EPs