“FREEBIRD” LYNYRD SKYNYRD
The battle cry of the South, the song the audience always yells out when any band asks for requests. Freebird started off as just a song from Lynyrd Skynyrd’s debut album. Before long, it became “the most requested song of all-time”. There was a radio edit that tracked in at 4:20 but everyone always wanted to hear the ten minute full version. In concert, once the trio of lead guitars get cooking, Freebird has lasted close to 15 minutes long. The tradition of Southern rock jams that seemly go on forever was a huge trend in the 70’s and 80’s. Here’s a look at three of the best!
“FALL OF THE PEACEMAKERS” MOLLY HATCHET
Another Jacksonville, Florida Southern rock band, Molly Hatchet continued waving the Rebel flag with a hard rock version of the swamp music of the South. The band’s name comes from an infamous prostitute who slashed the head off her paramours. Their album covers featured muscular Viking prominently wielding a hatchet while riding a powerful horse. From a band with such violent imagery in their art work, one of their true classics was Fall Of The Peacemakers, an amazing song dedicated to the memory of John Lennon, JFK, Gandhi, and Martin Luther King.
“GREEN GRASS AND HIGH TIDES” THE OUTLAWS
I had the pleasure seeing the Outlaws at one my first concerts when my nephew took me in the 70’s along to see Skynyrd, the Outlaws, and Charlie Daniels Band before I even understood how amazing this amazing triple heading bill would be. The Outlaws definitive jam, Green Grass And High Tides, features TWO extended guitar solos and lasted ten minutes long on their debut album. But this becomes the ultimate extended concert jam when the band plays it live. Like a group of jazz musicians, the song gets recreated each night and often last up to 25 minutes long when they close their live sets with this Southern rock masterpiece.