Vale: George Young, pioneer of Australian music
George Young, pioneering musician, producer, songwriter, and stone-cold genius, passed away yesterday, aged 70.
Young formed the Easybeats with songwriting partner Harry Vanda in late 1964, and the pair co-wrote the band’s many hit singles, including the classics ‘Friday On My Mind’ and ‘Good Times’. The pair also co-wrote numerous hits for other artists over the years, such as ‘Evie – Parts 1, 2 & 3’ for fellow Easybeat Stevie Young, and John Paul Young’s smash ‘Love Is In The Air’.
Young co-produced the early AC/DC albums (read: the best ones) such as Let There Be Rock, Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap, T.N.T., Powerage and High Voltage, and even played bass for a short stint in the band.
In 1973 he launched Albert Productions with Vanda, and Easybeats’ label boss Ted Albert – with Vanda he enjoyed a run of successful pop singles as the in house productions at Albert Productions.
He was inducted into the ARIA Hall Of Fame twice: as a songwriting duo with Vanda in 1988, and with the Easybeats in 2005.
“A consummate songwriter, trailblazing producer, artist, mentor and extraordinary musician, George was above all else a gentleman who was unfailingly modest, charming, intelligent and loyal, a man with a wonderful sense of humour”, wrote David Albert, CEO of Alberts, in a statement following his passing.
Jimmy Barnes, who had an international hit with a cover of Young’s ‘Good Times’, wrote of Young’s passing: “What a huge loss for music. A great songwriter, producer and a great human being.”
AC/DC also released a statement, writing: “As a musician, songwriter, producer, advisor and much, much more, you could not ask for a more dedicated and professional man.
“You could not ask for a finer brother. We will always remember him with gratitude and hold him close to our hearts.”
This article originally appeared on The Industry Observer, which is now part of The Music Network.