15 May AC/DC back plan for Bon Scott statue in Kirriemuir
AMBITIOUS plans to erect a life-sized statue of legendary AC/DC front man Bon Scott in his Scottish home town are being backed by the surviving members of the world-renowned music giants.
In a major boost for the campaign, the band are promoting the fund raising appeal on their official website.
DD8 Music, a community music group based in Bon Scott’s hometown of Kirriemuir, have set a target of £50,000 to erect a bronze life-sized statue of the rock star in the centre of the Angus market town.
The appeal was launched ten days ago at “Bonfest”, the annual celebration of the “Highway to Hell” singer in Kirriemuir. And already more than £12,000 has been raised.
Graham Galloway, the chairman of DD8 Music, said the support from the band was “massive” for the fund raising campaign.
He said: “The response has been huge but it’s not quite good enough because we are trying to raise the money through the ‘Kickstarter’ scheme and we have only a limited funding window and if we don’t raise the money by the end of the window we won’t get any of the cash.
“We have raised a great amount already but we have only 21 days left to raise nearly £38,000.”
Mr Galloway continued: “We have already had donations from across the globe. And we are hoping for a snowball effect from the promotion of the scheme on the official AC/DC website. They don’t just put anything up there so that’s a big thing for us. AC/DC has such a huge fan base.
“We are not necessarily looking for huge donations from people. But if we can get lots and lots of small donations and hit a critical mass we should be fine.”
He added: “Pledges are coming in from across the globe. AC/DC are one of the biggest bands on the planet so it’s not surprising really.”
DD8 Music has already commissioned Ayrshire based sculptor John McKenna to design and sculpt the memorial statue. His previous works include the statue of legendary manager Jock Stein outside Celtic Park. Bon Scott already has a street named after him in his home town and there is also a memorial plinth to the singer in Kirriemuir.
DD8 are hoping to erect the bronze statue to Bon in the town’s main square, next to the statue of Peter Pan which honours another of Kirriemuir’s famous sons, JM Barrie.
Said Mr Galloway: “We are going to hopefully orientate the two statues so they complement one another. Peter Pan is playing the pipes so we have already got the musical connection there and we can have Bon singing along with him.
“Folk in Kirrie are very proud of Bon’s connections with the town and in recent years it has just got stronger and stronger. We have been running the Bon Scott Festival since 2006 when the memorial stone was unveiled.
“And this year the whole town really got behind Bonfest. All the local shops had a special AC/DC displays in their windows and it was great.”
The posting on the AC/DC website states: At the 2013 Bonfest in Kirriemuir, Scotland, the funding campaign for the Bon Scott statue to be erected in Bon’s hometown has been started.
“By June 5th 2013, a total of £50,000 must be collected in order to make this effort possible.
“Now, the AC/DC community is being invited to help fund the statue project! For more information and to pledge to contribute a donation toward the Bon Scott statue project:http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/dd8music/bon-scott-statue-kirriemuir”
Bon Scott was born Ronald Belford Scott in Forfar in July 1946. His parents, Chick and Isa, ran the bakery in Bank Street, Kirriemuir, and stayed in Kirriemuir until 1952, when the family emigrated to Australia.
Bon formed his first band, The Spektors, twelve years later and performed in a number of other groups before replacing Dave Evans as lead singer of AC/DC in September 1974, joining founding members Angus and Malcolm Young who had emigrated from Glasgow to Sydney in 1963.
He died in 1980, at the age of just 33, after choking on his own vomit following a night’s heavy drinking in a London nightclub, only months after the release of the group’s seminal album “Highway to Hell.”
AC/DC paid tribute to Bon on their following album “Back In Black”, which went on to become the second best-selling album of all time, after Michael Jackson’s Thriller.