Lynyrd Skynyrd co-founder and singer Ronnie Van Zant would have turned 75 last Sunday.We’re taking a look back at Ronnie’s rock ‘n roll legacy.
Ronnie was the the older brother of Skynyrd vocalist Johnny Van Zant and 38 Special co-founder Donnie Van Zant, He was born on January 15th, 1948 in Jacksonville, Florida.
Along with friends Allan Collins and Gary Rossington, he founded Lynyrd Skynyrd whose name was a mock tribute to a gym teacher from their home town, Leonard Skinner.
- Their first album featured their classic "Free Bird."
- "Sweet Home Alabama" came from the follow-up album, Second Helping.
- Ronnie often spoke about not expecting to live to age 30.
- He was 29 years old when he died after the band's Convair private aircraft crashed on October 20th, 1977 near Gillsburg, Mississippi.
- Bandmates Steve and Cassie Gaines were also killed in the crash.
- Lynyrd Skynyrd were inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2006.
Former Lynyrd Skynyrd drummer Artimus Pyle talked about the late Ronnie Van Zant, saying:
“Ronnie was not afraid. Ronnie Van Zant spoke his mind and stood up like a man at all times and I was very proud to be in a band with him. And I love Ronnie and I miss him, but his music lives on. He was very direct and somebody had to say it and so he did. It was just like ‘Sweet Home Alabama.’ Somebody had to say, ‘Look, don’t blame me for something my great-grandfather was involved with.’ Somebody had to say, ‘Don’t ask me no questions — don’t ask me no stupid questions — and I won’t tell you no lies.’”
Get more Lynyrd Skynyd on the Big Show Fan Page at KBGO.com and on iHeartRadio, keyword Lynyrd Skynyrd.
[Source: Classic Hits Today]