What a coincidence…two late Lynyrd Skynyrd guitarists were born on this day, September 14th, 1949: Ed King and the man who replaced him, Steve Gaines. Probably the greatest rock anthem ever was Lynyrd Skynyrd”s “Free Bird” on the album: Pronounced Leh-nerd Skin-nerd in 1973. Guitarist Ed King first met Lynyrd Skynyrd when they opened for his group, Strawberry Alarm Clock, in 1968. He initially joined to replace bassist Leon Wilkeson, who left the band just before they recorded their first album but rejoined soon after it was completed. So King is the bassist on “Free Bird.” His initial reaction to the song probably wasn’t what you’d expect.
“When I first joined the band and they played the song for me, I just said to myself, ‘Boy, what a bunch of noise this is.’ But as it turned out it was the anthem — probably one of the greatest rock anthems of all time.”
Photo: Kent Miller/PRPhotos.com.