(November 24, 1950 – April 3, 2015)
The drummer on Lynyrd Skynyrd’s first two studio albums, (pronounced ‘lĕh-‘nérd ‘skin-‘nérd) and Second Helping, Bob Burns was killed yesterday in a traffic collision in Georgia.
No band epitomizes southern rock like Lynyrd Skynyrd. Putting together an “Ultimate Mixtape” for these rebels wasn’t easy, but revisiting each album and listening to the songs anew was a rewarding experience. They have evolved over the years without betraying their roots, and while the band’s recent releases are not as timeless as the material recorded in the seventies, it is still worth the listen.
A reminder of how the “Ultimate Mixtape” works:
- Every studio album must be represented by one and only one song.
- That song does not have to be an official “single” released by the band to promote said album.
- Compilation albums can be included, but only songs that are new, previously unreleased, or remixes of songs from prior albums are eligible for the list.
- Live albums are a waste of time. There are exceptions to this rule, especially in the case of Skynyrd. In some cases, the live recordings are even better than the studio efforts.
Let’s get on with JT’s Ultimate Mixtape: Lynyrd Skynyrd edition…
“Free Bird” (pronounced ‘lĕh-‘nérd ‘skin-‘nérd, 1973)
“Sweet Home Alabama” (Second Helping, 1974)
“Saturday Night Special” (Nuthin’ Fancy, 1975)
“Gimme Back My Bullets” (Gimme Back My Bullets, 1976)
“Call Me The Breeze” live (One More From the Road, 1976)
“What’s Your Name” (Street Survivors, 1977)
“Down South Jukin’” (Skynyrd’s First And…Last, 1978)
“Simple Man” live (Legend, 1987)
“That Smell” live (Southern By the Grace of God, 1988)
“Double Trouble” outtake version (Skynyrd’s Innyrds: Their Greatest Hits, 1989)
“Smokestack Lightning” (Lynyrd Skynyrd 1991, 1991)
“The Last Rebel” (The Last Rebel, 1993)
“All I Have is a Song” (Endangered Species, 1994)
“Travelin’ Man” (Twenty, 1997)
“Workin’” (Edge of Forever, 1999)
“Santa’s Messin’ with the Kid” (Christmas Time Again, 2000)
“Red White & Blue (Love It Or Leave)” (Vicious Cycle, 2003)
“God & Guns” (God & Guns, 2009)
“Ready To Fly” (Last of a Dyin’ Breed, 2012)
Tackling the “bonus tracks” section for Lynyrd Skynyrd proved more challenging than other bands because there is so little out there outside of the band. Original vocalist Ronnie Van Zant, as far as I can tell, never recorded with anyone else. There were some post-Skynyrd bands for Gary Rossington, Allen Collins, and Artimus Pyle, but not a lot of output from them—and a lot of what is out there is now out of print and very expensive. Johnny Van Zant had a few solo releases as well as some albums with his brother Donnie from .38 Special. Ed King and Rickey Medlocke performed with other bands prior to their involvement with Lynryd Skynyrd, while Billy Powell worked with Kid Rock in the 21st century. All that adds up to only eight bonus tracks.
Strawberry Alarm Clock (with Ed King) “Incense & Peppermints” (Incense & Peppermints, 1967)
Blackfoot (with Rickey Medlocke) “Train, Train” (Strikes, 1979)
Johnny Van Zant “Only the Strong Survive” (No More Dirty Deals, 1980)
Rossington-Collins Band “Don’t Misunderstand Me” (Anytime, Anyplace, Anywhere, 1980)
Artimus Pyle Band “Town To Town” (A.P.B., 1981)
Allen Collins Band “Just Trouble” (Here, There & Back, 1983)
Van Zant “I’m a Fighter” (Van Zant, 1985)
Kid Rock (with Billy Powell) “All Summer Long” (Rock n Roll Jesus, 2007)
It’s fun to chase the rabbits and hear what these guys did outside of Skynyrd, but it’s even more fun to hear it all together from “Free Bird” through “All Summer Long.” Get your Amazon account primed to download these songs, or replace a few of your choosing and make your own “Ultimate Mix Tape: Lynyrd Skynyrd edition.”
(December 5, 1938 – July 26, 2013)
He isn’t a household name, but you know his songs. JJ Cale wrote “They Call Me The Breeze” (made popular by Lynyrd Skynyrd), “Cocaine” and “After Midnight” (made popular by Eric Clapton). He passed away yesterday after suffering a heart attack.
day 01 – your favorite song
Lynyrd Skynyrd “Freebird”
There has never been and never will be a greater song. Don’t even try to write one. It cannot be done.