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AC/DC’s Brian Johnson Gives Positive Update on Hearing Loss

“I was … able to hear music again like I haven’t heard for several years now,” singer says of new in-ear technology

Daniel Kreps Jun 06, 2016
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AC/DC's Brian Johnson. Photo: Matt Becker/Wikimedia Commons

AC/DC’s Brian Johnson. Photo: Matt Becker/Wikimedia Commons

AC/DC singer Brian Johnson, whose hearing issues forced him to leave during the band’s Rock or Bust tour, has issued a statement on his treatment. Johnson met with Stephen Ambrose, an in-ear technology specialist, and is hopeful that his work will improve his hearing loss.

“It works,” Johnson said of Ambrose’s ADEL hearing technology in an authorized statement. “It just totally works and you can’t argue with that. I was really moved and amazed to be able to hear music again like I haven’t heard for several years now. I can’t wait for it to be miniaturized so I can use it in every situation from normal communication, going out to noisy restaurants, [and] performing live music onstage.”

After Johnson revealed that hearing issues threatened to leave him with “total hearing loss,” Ambrose reached out to Johnson via YouTube. Ambrose, the creator of the wireless in-ear monitor first popularized in the Seventies, discovered that his invention could cause permanent damage to hearing. As a means to improve his product, Ambrose worked with scientists on an improved in-ear monitor that acted like a second, synthetic eardrum that “absorbs only the harmful sound pressures.”

“Brian, I introduced Guns N’ Roses to in-ear monitors in 1990 and I’m a big fan of Axl Rose’s voice, but let’s be clear: I’m with Roger Daltrey on this, I really can’t imagine anyone but you singing ‘Back in Black,'” Ambrose said in the video.

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Johnson’s latest statement is decidedly more optimistic than he was just a month earlier in a Sirius XM interview, when the singer said his touring days were over: “I had so many good times with the boys,” Johnson said. “And I’ve had such a lucky and great life. And I’m just thankful really that I came out of it in one piece. Now I guess I could rest me socks off.”

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