Cliff Williams will retire from his role as AC/DC‘s bassist after the band’s ‘Rock Or Bust World Tour’ concludes tonight (September 20) in Philadelphia.
Williams joins Brian Johnson, Phil Rudd and Malcolm Young in leaving the band in recent years – although Johnson announced recently that he is likely to tour again after testing a new hearing monitor – leaving guitarist Angus Young as the sole remaining original member of the band. Axl Rose is currently performing lead vocal duties on this world tour.
After alluding to his retirement plans back in July, Williams confirmed his decision with a special video posted on the AC/DC YouTube account earlier today. Although thanking all of the band’s supporters for a “brilliant” tour, the 66-year-old explained why he would be leaving the band at this stage.
“It’s time for me to step out, that’s all,” Williams said. “[And] not because we’ve lost Phil or Brian – everything changes when something happens like that. When Bon [Scott] died, it changed. Everything changes.
“I’m just ready to get off the road and do what I do,” he continued. “In between tours, we take a few years off. So I know how to do that, and what I’m going to do. It’s just my time. I’m happy – [it’s] family time now. Chill out and not do this.”
But he added that he was grateful for how his career with the band had panned out. “I couldn’t have asked for anything more; being with the people I’m with, and have been, and being in the situation, playing this music.”
Williams joined the band as bassist in 1977 after a successful audition to replace Mark Evans. He first played on AC/DC’s fourth internationally-released studio album, ‘Powerage’, which was released in 1978.