Lynyrd Skynyrd, the notable American musical band, has made a permanent imprint on the universe of music with its obvious Southern stone sound.
From their unassuming starting point as “My Backyard” during the 1960s to taking off to fame during the 1970s with works of art like “Sweet Home Alabama” and “Free Bird,” Lynyrd Skynyrd has encapsulated the soul of Southern US rock ‘n’ roll.
Nonetheless, their process has been defaced by misfortune, discussion, and a one-of-a-kind bit of destiny.
In this investigation, we investigate the truth of Lynyrd Skynyrd’s set of experiences, the difficulties they’ve confronted, and the debate encompassing them.
What is Lynyrd Skynyrd?
Lynyrd Skynyrd is a rock group that was established in Jacksonville, Florida, America.
In 1964, the band was founded under the name My Backyard, with Bob Burns on drums, Larry Junstrom on bass guitar, Gary Rossington on guitar, Allen Collins on guitar, and lead vocalist Ronnie Van Zant.
Before settling on “Lynyrd Skynyrd” in 1969, the band spent five years touring small venues under a variety of names and with multiple lineup changes. In 1973, the band released its debut album.
By then, they had decided on a lineup consisting of guitarist Ed King, keyboardist Billy Powell, and bassist Leon Wilkeson. In 1974, Burns departed, and Artimus Pyle took his place.
Is Lynyrd Skynyrd still alive?
Being a band without any surviving original members puts Lynyrd Skynyrd in a unique situation. Gary Rossington, the guitarist and last surviving member of Lynyrd Skynyrd, has died, aged 71.
The band took their name from Leonard Skinner, a PE teacher at their high school in Florida and a fictional character in the novelty song “Hello Muddah, Hello Fadduh” by Allan Sherman.
Despite rocketing to stardom with their iconic sound in the 1970s, the band was beset by tragedy from the early days. For instance, Rossington cheated death twice.
His 1976 Ford Torino crash into a tree served as the basis for the band’s warning song, “That Smell.” Many band members perished in a horrific plane crash that occurred the following year, involving the band.
On October 20, 1977, three days after releasing their fifth album, ‘Street Survivors’, the band boarded a plane to fly from South Carolina to Louisiana.
The plane ran out of fuel and crashed into the woods in Mississippi, killing Van Zant, guitarist Steve Gaines, backing vocalist and Gaines’ sister Cassie, assistant road manager Dean Kilpatrick, and the pilot and co-pilots Walter McCreary and William John Gray.
Rossington made it through, and the group finally got back together in 1987, with Johnny, Van Zant’s brother, taking the lead vocals. Collins was hurt in an automobile accident in 1986, so he decided not to rejoin the group.
1990 saw his eventual death. Junstrom passed away in 2019 and Burns in 2015. With Rossington’s passing, the last original member of Lynyrd Skynyrd has also died.
The band started a lengthy farewell tour in 2018, and there were rumors circulating about a fifteenth album in the works.
Although Rossington stated that the band would still occasionally perform live, it is unclear if they will now do so without any of the original members.
Controversies about Lynyrd Skynyrd
In 2012, Southern rock king Lynyrd Skynyrd was hit with controversy over the use of the Confederate Flag.
Largely seen as a symbol of hatred and a painful reminder of America’s past, the Confederate Flag has been used by Lynyrd Skynyrd since the 1970s to showcase their pride in their Southern roots and all that encompasses them: long, lazy summers, good manners, fervent faith, and a history of great music.
The politics of such an emotionally charged, controversial item as the Confederate flag have no place within music; the last real human emotion that serves as the glue that bonds and unites people is music, which is an inherently good thing.
Even though we do not personally know them, we are confident that the guys from Lynyrd Skynyrd would concur with us and exhort us to return to the true essence of the occasion, which is having a blast in honor of Ronnie’s music.