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Lynyrd Skynyrd’s Gary Rossington On Their New Album And Bassist

Geoff Burke, Getty Images

Southern rock godfathers Lynyrd Skynyrd have released seven albums together since reuniting in 1987, a decade after the tragic plane crash which claimed the lives of three band members, including original vocalist and primary lyricist Ronnie Van Zant.

The band will add another notch to their legacy of recordings with the release of ‘Last Of A Dyin’ Breed’ on August 21 (September 17 in the UK). The album is the band’s first to feature former Black Crowes bassist Johnny Colt, who joined the band on bass earlier this year.

Guitarist Gary Rossington identifies Colt as someone who has been a very important addition to the group, delivering high praise for his playing in a new interview with Classic Rock. “He plays things Leon Wilkeson-style,” referencing the band’s original bassist, who passed away in 2001. Colt “has revitalized us,” Rossington says.

Musically, the new album brings things back closer to the band’s Southern roots following a country fried detour with 2009’s ‘Gods & Guns.’ Rossington points to ‘Mississippi Blood,” which he calls, “an old, swampy, bluesy-type thing” and ‘One Day At A Time,’ a “cool tune that sounds like something the original band might have written” as a couple of album highlights that fans can look forward to.

2012 marks the 35th anniversary of the Mississippi plane crash that would change the course of Lynyrd Skynyrd forever. “You end up reliving it everyday,” Rossington says. “Who knows what would have happened if things had turned out differently?”

“We could have gone on to make five more albums and still be going strong or we could have broken up the following year.” Rossington, the lone remaining member of the original group, continues. “I’m just happy to be keeping the names of the old guys alive.”

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