Thursday, August 14, 2008

Southern Rock: It's More Than Just Skynyrd

Around the mid-1990s, I became interested in country music. The first artists I enjoyed were Alan Jackson, Sammy Kershaw and Garth Brooks. Then I heard something a bit different in the music of Travis Tritt. It was country, but with more of a rock/blues style. Travis always starts his shows with the song "Put Some Drive in Your Country". In the song he talks of his influences, ranging from country classics like Roy Acuff and George Jones, to artists like Hank Williams Jr. and Waylon Jennings. My favorite line of the song says..."Well I made myself a promise, when I was just a kid, I'd mix southern rock and country, and that's just what I did". Another line says "Man I miss Duane Allman, I wish he was still around". (Sometimes in concert he substitutes the names Stevie Ray Vaughan or Waylon Jennings). So it got me thinking, who is Duane Allman and what is southern rock all about? I idolized Travis so much that I figured if he likes it, it must be some good stuff. I had heard of Lynyrd Skynyrd but did not know much about them or their genre of music. Much of southern rock originated in Florida and the most prominent bands peaked in the 1970s. So, here are some of my favorite southern rock bands with some of their best known songs listed.

Lynyrd Skynyrd---Freebird, Sweet Home Alabama, Gimmee Three Steps
Allman Brothers Band---Ramblin' Man, Melissa, Statesboro Blues
Marshall Tucker Band---Can't You See, Heard it in a Love Song
Molly Hatchett---Flirtin' with Disaster
Charlie Daniels Band---Devil Went Down to Georgia, The South's Gonna do it Again
.38 Special---Hold on Loosely
Stevie Ray Vaughan---Pride and Joy, Taxman (Some may consider him a blues artist, but there are southern rock influences in his music).
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