Coconut Times - Ocean City Maryland
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LYNYRD SKYNYRD
Written By: Gary Crouthamel
*Click images below to view larger versions.
LYNYRD SKYNYRD
LYNYRD SKYNYRD
LYNYRD SKYNYRD
LYNYRD SKYNYRD
Johnny Van Zant
LYNYRD SKYNYRD
LYNYRD SKYNYRD
Gary Rossington
LYNYRD SKYNYRD
LYNYRD SKYNYRD
Michael Cartellone
LYNYRD SKYNYRD
LYNYRD SKYNYRD
Peter Keys
LYNYRD SKYNYRD
LYNYRD SKYNYRD
Mark Matejka
LYNYRD SKYNYRD
LYNYRD SKYNYRD
Rickey Medlocke
LYNYRD SKYNYRD
LYNYRD SKYNYRD
Robert Kearns
Wicomico Youth & Civic Center
Salisbury, Md. October 16th, 2009
 
        Well this was a treat for going to see a concert. I only had to drive 30 miles west to the Wicomico Youth & Civic Center in Salisbury to see  Lynyrd Skynyrd who have played our area on and off for over the past ten years or so. As I made my way across the parking lot to the venue, I ran into West-O's very own Steve O (probably Skip Dixxon's most frequent requester at his lunch hour show) plus quite a few other local people that made their way to the show.
        Inside, right before the almost sold-out show started, the fans were chanting Synyrd, Skynyrd, the lights went out and the band hit the stage. The stage, quite open except for the drum riser in the middle and piano and backing vocalists’ platforms on both sides of the drum riser. Behind the drum riser was a video screen and on both sides of it were banners that looked like a wall of speakers from the top of the lights to the floor. The band members were Johnny Van Zant on lead vocals, only surviving original member Gary Rossington on guitars, Rickey Medlocke on guitars, Mark Matejka on guitars, Robert Kearns on bass, Michael Cartellone on drums, Peter Keys on keyboards and Dale Krantz-Rossington and Carol Chase on backing vocals. They opened their show with "Skynyrd Nation," a song from their new album, God & Guns, dedicated to all the loyal Skynyrd fans. Then "What’s Your Name" and "That Smell" after which Van Zant, asked the crowd, "So how many die-hard Lynyrd Skynyrd fans do we have in the house tonight, and how many have seen a Lynyrd Skynyrd show before?" The crowd screamed back chanting, “Yes!”  Then came "I Know A Little," and Van Zant dedicated their next song, "Simple Man," to all our troops fighting for our freedom to live in the best country in the world. Amen to that! Before their next song Van Zant told us that the Skynyrd family had lost two band members in the past year (original keyboardist Billy Powell and bassist Ean Evans) and dedicated "Still Unbroken" to them. Up next they played a medley of songs consisting of "Whiskey Rock N Roller," "Down South Jukin," "Needle And The Spoon," and "Tuesday's Gone," which by now had the entire crowd singing word for word on every song. Then charging right into "Gimme Three Steps," "Call Me The Breeze," and ending their main set with "Sweet Home Alabama."
        As the band came back to the stage for their encore Van Zant asked the crowd, "What song does Salisbury, Maryland wanna hear"? A deafening roar of "Freebird" was heard from the crowd. As Peter Keys started that piano intro and Gary Rossington started those bird chirping sounds from his Gibson SG guitar, it was all over from there. Throughout the song a touching montage of all the deceased band members flashed on the video screen as well as previous band members and present ones. Halfway through the song a mirrored ball dropped down, all the stage lights went out, and the reflected sparkling lights made us feel as if we were flying through the galaxy.   Suddenly the mirror ball went back up and the stage lights came back up in full color before they ended the song and one hell of a night of great Lynyrd Skynyrd music. After the song ended and the house lights came back up, Johnny Van Zant and the backup singers returned to the stage and gave their final bows and waves to the crowd before exiting the stage. Even though Lynyrd Skynyrd has been through our area before, I sure hope we get a return tour date from them again next year. Stay tuned!
– Gary Crouthamel, concert photo journalist
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