“Today it is with deep heartfelt sadness that AC/DC has to announce the passing of Malcolm Young,” AC/DC wrote in a statement shared on social media.
“Malcolm, along with Angus, was the founder and creator of AC/DC. With enormous dedication and commitment he was the driving force behind the band. As a guitarist, songwriter and visionary he was a perfectionist and a unique man. He always stuck to his guns and did and said exactly what he wanted. He took great pride in all that he endeavored. His loyalty to the fans was unsurpassed,” the band continued.
In the same statement, Malcolm’s brother and bandmate Angus Young added, “As his brother it is hard to express in words what he has meant to me during my life, the bond we had was unique and very special. He leaves behind an enormous legacy that will live on forever. Malcolm, job well done.”
In a statement from the Australian Associated Press, it was revealed that Malcolm died peacefully Saturday with his family by his side.
“Renowned for his musical prowess, Malcolm was a songwriter, guitarist, performer, producer and visionary who inspired many,” the band said. “From the outset, he knew what he wanted to achieve and, along with his younger brother, took to the world stage giving their all at every show. Nothing less would do for their fans.”
In 2014, it was announced that Malcolm had been diagnosed with dementia and was taking a break from the band.
In 1973, Angus and Malcolm co-founded the Australian band together — vocalist Bon Scott later joined the following year — and in 1984, Malcolm told PEOPLE that the story behind their band name was simple: “You could simply remember it; that’s why we chose it. We were still young and naive.”
Remembering one of the band’s early gigs in Melbourne, Malcolm revealed that, “Upfront, bisexual women would come in and hold up vibrators…They had T-shirts on with holes cut out in front, and their boobs were poking through. It was great.”
AC/DC has released dozens of massive hits throughout the band’s lengthy career including “Highway to Hell,” “You Shook Me All Night Long,” and “Back in Black.”