Mark Evans On How He Joined AC/DC -
Rose Tattoo Angry Anderson and Mark Evans. Photo by Ros O'Gorman

Rose Tattoo Angry Anderson and Mark Evans. Photo by Ros O'Gorman

Mark Evans On How He Joined AC/DC

by Paul Cashmere on November 2, 2020

in News

In the lead-up to the next AC/DC album ‘PWR/UP’ later this month, Noise11 revisits the classic interview with former AC/DC bass player Mark Evans on how he joined the band.

Mark was the bass player for AC/DC on the iconic Bon Scott albums ‘TNT’ (1975), ‘Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap’ (1976), ‘Let There Be Rock’ (1977) and on ‘Cold Hearted Man’ from ‘Powerage’ (1978).

Mark was living in Melbourne where AC/DC was based at the time when he was invited to audition for AC/DC. “The guys gave me a copy of ‘High Voltage’ the night before,” Mark told “They said ‘learn these songs’. I went home, it was Saturday night. Ralph the roadie set the gear up in the hallway. The first song we started with as ‘Soul Stripper’. We started with that one because Malcolm said the last guy couldn’t get this together so I had to get it right.

“From the first chord, the first 10 seconds, I could hear those guitars meshing and I knew these guys were serious. The impression you got from the ‘High Voltage’ album was not necessarily that of a loud rock and roll band. There were a couple of light, pop things on there. The next day when I went in and played with Angus and Malcolm it was loud and rocky. It was like the biggest lightbulb going off. I said ‘this is it, this is where I’m supposed to be’.

Mark didn’t have much knowledge of who AC/DC were when he joined. The first album ‘High Voltage’ was only a moderate hit in Australia but it did generate a hit song with a cover of ‘Baby Please Don’t Go’. Mark knew who Phil Rudd was because of his previous band Buster Brown and who Bon Scott was because of Fraternity. “I’d been told that Angus and Malcolm were young brothers of George Young,” Mark says. “I was a great Easybeats fan so that certainly had appeal. I suspected it was Bon Scott (in the band). They said ‘Bon’s not here’ and I thought that’s got to be Bon Scott, the guy from Fraternity. I thought maybe not because of the age difference. I was 19 and Bon was 29. When you are 19 working with someone 29 that is a big gap. I met him at the first gig. He was a cool guy. It was like being on the road with your mad uncle”.

Watch the Noise11 interview with Mark Evans:

Mark is now a member of Rose Tattoo and at one time back in time he was invited to join the band but declined. “Rose Tattoo is still my favourite band,” Mark says. “I got approached by my mate Mick Cox to do it. I had committed myself to Finch at that stage and when you make a commitment you make a commitment. If the offer had come a few weeks earlier, I would have been in Rose Tattoo”.

One of the things that scared him off the Tatts who having to get a Tatt. “I was scared to death of getting tattoos. I told the manager I’ll come and play with the band but tattoos are out of the question. I said ‘I’m actually Jewish. I can’t get tattoos’. I told a lie to get out of it”.

Since 2017, Mark has been the bass player for Rose Tattoo.

AC/DC will release ‘PWR/UP’ (Power Up) on 13 November, 2020.

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