AC/DC were in danger of being kicked off their record label prior to the release of their seminal "Let There Be Rock" album, Classic Rock reveals.
Phil Carson, the London-based chief executive of Atlantic Records and the man who got AC/DC signed to the label, recalls:
"They'd delivered 'Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap' , which I thought was pretty good. But the Atlantic A&R department [in the US] said: 'We're sorry, but this album doesn't make it. We're not gonna put it out and we're dropping the band.' And everybody was unanimous in this, by the way everybody."
Carson goes on to say: "I said: I think you're making a very big mistake.' But the drop notice was out; AC/DC were history. So I went to Neshui [Ertegun, co-owner of Atlantic with brother Ahmet] and showed him the sales figures that we'd got for 'High Voltage' [also 1976].
"They were not awe-inspiring but considering we'd only paid $25,000 for the album this was not so bad. There were 10,000 sold in Germany and 12,000 in England. Maybe it had sold 40,000 overall. It had certainly earned its $25,000 back.
"Neshui backed me up and I re-signed the band at that point. I managed to claw it back in. Thank God I did."
Thanks for the report to ClassicRockMagazine.com.