Skynyrd Considered Calling It A Day After Recent Tragedies
Lynyrd Skynyrd’s future was in the balance following the deaths of two members earlier this year. “We really were at another crossroads, wondering what we should do,” revealed guitarist Rickey Medlocke.
Speaking to Rock Radio DJ Paul Anthony, Medlocke said it took a great deal of soul-searching before the band made the decision to carry on.
Skynyrd are no strangers to tragedy, of course. In 1977 their touring plane crashed, killing singer Ronnie Van Zant, guitarist Steve Gaines, backing singer Cassie Gaines and three others on board.
More recently – this past January, in fact – keyboardist Billy Powell died of a suspected heart attack, while bassist Ean Evans sadly succumbed to cancer last month.
Medlocke, who played drums with Skynyrd in 1970 then returned as guitarist in 1996, enjoying fame with Blackfoot in-between, says with new album God & Guns set for release this autumn Skynyrd finally made the decision to continue.
He says: “We’re one big family. We spend so much time on the road together. When you get to be that close you take things heart.
“When you lose somebody you can’t help but step back and think, ‘How much longer do we want to continue losing people like this?’
“We really were at another crossroads, wondering what we should do here.
“We’re rock musicians, you know? We were born to play music and that’s what we should be doing. They would want us to carry on and do the best we can.
“So we’ve got Robert Kearns on bass and Peter Keys on keyboards now, and we’re really looking forward to the album coming out. People are saying it’s the strongest thing we’ve done in years.”
Skynyrd recently played four dates in the UK.
To listen to the entire Rock Radio interview, go here.
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