Thursday, August 2, 2012

Lynyrd Skynyrd founder to be honored by Georgia Music Hall Of Fame

Gary Rossington, a founding member of Lynyrd Skynyrd, is set to be honored at the 34th Annual Georgia Music Hall of Fame Awards Concert and Show, scheduled for Sunday, October 14 at the Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre.

Rossington will be honored in the Songwriter Category, after contributing to the Southern rock legends’ 30 million+ worldwide album sales, three 2x Platinum records and a position among the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time by Rolling Stone magazine. He has created songs that cement him as a cultural icon, including "Sweet Home Alabama," "Simple Man" and "What's Your Name," among many others.

Rossington was one of six band members who survived the October 20, 1977 plane crash near Gillsburg, Mississippi that took the lives of singer Ronnie Van Zant, guitarist Steve Gaines, backup singer Cassie Gaines, and three others. Despite breaking both arms, both legs, both wrists, both ankles and his pelvis, Rossington would eventually recover from his injuries and play on stage again (with steel rods in his right arm and one of his legs).

Rossington is the sole original member remaining in Skynyrd, who will release their new album, “Last Of A Dyin' Breed,” on August 21.

Atlanta's celebrated television icon Monica Pearson will be Mistress of Ceremonies of the event. A Special Performance by American Idol stars and recording artists Snellville, GA-raised Diana DeGarmo and her fiancée Ace Young, who met while appearing in the Broadway revival of "Hair," will be another highlight of the evening. Many of the inductees will also perform during the Concert.

At the Concert and Show, to be televised live by GPB (Georgia Public Broadcasting), artists representing extraordinary talent in classical, contemporary, country and Southern Rock music will be saluted and will perform on-stage during the evening.

According to Dr. Bobbie Bailey, President of Friends of Georgia Music Festival, Inc., "Since the first presentation in 1979, at which the legendary Ray Charles was an inductee, the Georgia Music Hall of Fame Awards Show and Concert has emerged as the premier forum for recognizing the scope of the performing virtuosity of Georgia-born-or-based music professionals."

The 2012 inductees include, in addition to Robert Spano, recipient of the Chairman's Award, musical and artist living legends as well as three giants of the Georgia entertainment arena being recognized posthumously:

• Performer – Sugarland, Jennifer Nettles and Kristian Bush: From the Platinum-selling #1 hit "Stay," 22 million worldwide sales of albums and singles and five Country Music "Vocal Duo of the Year" Awards to Grammy and Academy of Country Music accolades, the duet partners combine vocal, songwriting, production and multi-instrumentalist greatness.

• Group – .38 Special: Bringing a strong Southern Rock influence to American music, .38 Special's breakthrough hit "Hold On Loosely" has been followed by #1 Billboard albums and hits including "Back Where You Belong" and "Second Chance."

• Non-Performer – Alex Hodges: A native Georgian, Alex Hodges is CEO of Nederlander Concerts and started his career as an agent at Walden Artists where he introduced Georgia's Otis Redding and other R&B legends to the world. As principal at Paragon Agency and later Empire Agency, he guided the illustrious careers of stars including Stevie Ray Vaughan, Gregg Allman and groups such as Lynyrd Skynyrd, The Police, The Allmann Brothers Band, Atlanta Rhythm Section, The Outlaws, Sea Level, The Marshall Tucker Band and The Charlie Daniels Band, among others.

• Horizon Award – Riley Biederer: Riley Biederer is a singer/songwriter from Atlanta, USA, with a voice bigger than her ex-gymnast's frame and a resume beyond her fifteen years. Since winning Georgia state titles in the vault and the floor exercise, she has been focusing exclusively on her music. In addition to writing prodigiously on her own, she has collaborated with a host of well-known songwriters in the pop, rock and country genres, and recorded with producer/engineer Matt Still. (Elton John, Outkast). She is currently writing and recording songs for her debut album.

• Posthumous: Blues guitarist Jonny Jenkins, Fox Theatre's organist and WSB personality Bob Van Camp and Atlanta's beloved DJ Skinny Bobby Harper.

Lynyrd Lynyrd Skynyrd

See also:

VIDEO: Lynyrd Skynyrd – Last Of A Dyin’ Breed lyric video
VIDEO: In the studio with Lynyrd Skynyrd
AUDIO: Lynyrd Skynyrd – Last Of A Dyin’ Breed
New Lynyrd Skynyrd album due this summer
VIDEO: Lynyrd Skynyrd guitarist joins Metallica for anniversary
Lynyrd Skynyrd singer hospitalized
Lynyrd Skynyrd namesake dies