Lynyrd Skynyrd

Formation proficient in among others the genres boogie rock, country rock and southern rock.

Lynyrd Skynyrd band name origins - Johannah Quaas gymnasticsMost of the original band members were from Jacksonville, Florida, the same place where the Robert E. Lee High school is. Ronnie Van Zant, Gary Rossington and Bob Burns were educated here.

Their gymnastics teacher was Leonard Skinner, who was quite inflexible about compliance with the school rules. Long hair did not comply, making collisions with Skinner unavoidable. Skinner sent Rossington and other long-haired kids to the principal to bring them to justice.

The members of the band decided on sweet revenge and called their formation after Skinner, with an extra ‘d’ at the end to be on the safe side: Leonard Skinnerd. That turned out to be not safe enough, leading to an even more alternative spelling, Lynyrd Skynyrd.

At first Skinner was not amused, later he did not care so much any more and later still - after the band had acquired world fame - he got the joke. He died on september 20, 2010 in Jacksonville, 77 years old; he had Alzheimer's.

He did survive most of the band members.
  • Singer Ronnie van Zandt, guitarist Steve Gaines and backup singer Cassie Gaines were killed in a plane crash in 1977; 
  • guitarist Allen Collins kicked the bucket in 1990 (cause: chronic pneumonia, a complication of the partial paralysis from which he suffered); 
  • in 2001 bass player Leon Wilkeson was found dead in his hotel room; 
  • drummer Hughie Thomasson died in 2007 in his sleep (heart attack); 
  • keyboard player Billy Powell popped off in 2009, 56 years old 
  • and the later bassist Ean Evans gave up the fight against cancer in 2009.
So far this medical bulletin.

Active: 1964-1977; 1987-present, USA

See also: Screamin' Cheetah Wheelies

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