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News November 5, 2021

AC/DC become fifth Aussie act to crack 1 billion YouTube views

Senior Journalist, B2B
AC/DC become fifth Aussie act to crack 1 billion YouTube views

AC/DC have become the fifth Australian act to have one of their videos crack 1 billion views on YouTube.

They join Sia, Gotye, Tones & I and Iggy Azalea on the exclusive list.

In AC/DC’s case, it’s with ‘Thunderstruck’ from the 1990 album The Razor’s Edge.

“Our video for ‘Thunderstruck’ just passed a billion views on YouTube,” they tweeted. “Thank you fans!”

It is estimated that AC/DC would have made US$1 million from the channel.

‘Thunderstruck’ may not be the obvious contender for the list compared to their most iconic tracks like ‘It’s A Long Way To The Top’, ‘Highway To Hell’, ‘Back In Black’ or ‘For Those About To Rock’.

But it’s one of their best-loved stage faves, with one of Angus Young’s most compelling solos.

Its music video is considered among the best in terms of capturing the excitement of a live rock show.

When director David Mallet set out to make what he called the “ultimate performance video”, he used creative camera work during the August 17, 1990 shoot at Brixton Academy in London.

Angus Young was shot doing his duckwalk over plexiglass to get footage from below, and mini-cameras were placed on the guitar and on one of the drumsticks.

Hundreds of fans are sporting T-shirts with the message “AC/DC – I was Thunderstruck”.

‘Thunderstruck’ has also taken on a life of its own through the years.

It’s been in half a dozen movies including the Australian-made Thunderstruck about five friends’ journey to Bon Scott’s grave in Fremantle as well as Iron Man 2, Battleship, Daddy’s Home and Deadpool 2.

The band charged $500,000 for it to be used in Varsity Blues.

It was used in in TV ads for Holden utes while sporting crews such as the Dallas Cowboys, Michigan State University football team and the US Navy Blue Angels blare it out over the PA system as they enter the field.

A number of Australian acts including Vance Joy, 5 Seconds of Summer, Dean Lewis and Vassy have reached 1 billion streams – and been honoured by APRA AMCOS through its 1,000,000,000 List – but reached that figure from a number of services.

The five most viewed videos on YouTube as of October 2021 were:

(1) ‘Baby Shark Dance” by Pinkfong Kids’ Songs & Stories (9.53 billion views)

(2) ‘Despacito’ by Luis Fonsi, featuring Daddy Yankee (7.59 billion views)

(3) ‘Johny Johny Yes Papa’ by LooLoo Kids (5.82 billion views)

(4) Shape Of You’ by Ed Sheeran (5.50 billion views)

(5) ‘See You Again’ by Wiz Khalifa, featuring Charlie Puth (5.30 billion)


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