Tuesday, April 4, 2023

Lynyrd Skynyrd announce future plans following death of Gary Rossington

Lynyrd Skynyrd has announced its future plans following the recent passing of the group’s last original founding member Gary Rossington.

In a newly-released statement, the band says the current members – led by Johnny Van Zant, the group’s lead singer for the past 36 years – were unsure if they would continue following Gary’s untimely passing. After much discussion with the band, the families of Ronnie Van Zant and Allen Collins, and Dale Rossington, the collective has reached unified support, and feel that continuing to perform live, and keeping the music alive, is in the best interest of the fans and everyone involved.

“I recently lost my husband and partner of over 41 years,” says Dale Rossington. “He was an amazing father, grandfather, brother and friend, but most importantly was a world class musician and songwriter. It’s been my honor and privilege to share the stage with him for all these years. His music touched so many millions of people around The World, and Gary was always the first to say how, ‘Skynyrd’s music is bigger than me or any one person.’ Gary made it known at every chance to express how timeless the music was, and it was always his goal to keep the music alive for his brothers because that was always their dream. He spent his entire life trying to carry on that dream for Ronnie, Allen, Steve and all the others over the years. While he was not able to physically be on stage with the current lineup over the last couple years, he supported them in every way. His dream will continue thanks to Johnny, Rickey and the rest of our band mates to continue to carry his legacy and music on for future generations.”

“Gary was not only my brother, bandmate and friend, I think he loved me as much as I loved him,”
adds Johnny Van Zant. “We would do anything for each other. We laughed, we fell, we cried and made up, and shared the stage for the last 36 years. Gary, along with my brother Ronnie and Allen started this band and left us all a legacy of music that has stood the test of time, and crossed three generations of fans. The music they created, and the music we created, together since 1987, was always meant to be experienced LIVE. We have come together with the founding band member estates, and everyone involved, and feel the music should continue for everyone to love and enjoy. So we will continue to perform for the Skynyrd Nation.”

“Lynyrd Skynyrd has been a part of my life for 50+ years,” explains Ronnie’s widow Judy Van Zant Jenness. “The journey has been filled with love, joy, friendship and tragedy. Ronnie, Gary and Allen’s dream was to write music that would connect with people and to play that music live. I cannot say with certainty what those who have passed on would want us to do, but I do know what Gary wanted. And I know what the fans want. To show our undying love for those who are no longer with us and to pay tribute to them, the music will continue. The Lynyrd Skynyrd family is unified in this decision.”

An all-star cast that included Slash, Billy Gibbons, Warren Haynes and Paul Rodgers performed a tribute to Rossington and the band at the CMT Music Awards in Austin, TX on April 2.

In June, Encore will present Lynyrd Skynyrd’s performance filmed at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, TN on November 13, 2022. The concert film captures the final public performance of Gary Rossington, and will be exhibited on big screens in movie theaters across the U.S before being broadcast in August on PBS.

Lynyrd Skynyrd will team up with ZZ Top for a previously-announced co-headlining North American tour this summer, with shows starting in West Palm Beach, FL on July 21.

Pick up your copy of Lynyrd Skynyrd’s “All Time Greatest Hits” package here.

See also:

Slash and Billy Gibbons rock Lynyrd Skynyrd tribute at CMT Music Awards
Slash and Billy Gibbons to lead Lynyrd Skynyrd tribute at CMT Music Awards
Lynyrd Skynyrd guitarist Gary Rossington dead at 71
ZZ Top and Lynyrd Skynyrd announce North American tour
Search Lynyrd Skynyrd at hennemusic