When I first met Allen & Gary, Gary was playing the white SG and Allen the goldtop Les Paul with mini-humbuckers. When I joined the band, they'd switched! The Les Paul you hear on the PRONOUNCED album is that gold top Paul. Both those guitars were stolen out of Allen's room at the Miyako Hotel (I think that's the name of it) in San Fancisco in 1974.
Allen playing both guitars
Last Edit: Nov 30, 2009 12:55:01 GMT -5 by ekforum
Usually everybody traveling together on a bus creates some strong music opposites. Not with Skynyrd. We all listened to the same stuff. Haggard, Cooder, Atlantic Rhythm Section, Free. I'd say the ONLY opposition was Billy wanting to always put the YES album on. NO!!!!!!!!
Being in a band is a full time job but when you're young, what else is there to do?! If you're not touring, you're writing, rehearsing, preparing to do a record. I wasn't in the band very long (late '72 to mid '75), but we never took a break that whole time.
From what I hear, Skynyrd's manager Peter Rudge sent everybody to the West Indies after the 'Torture Tour' in '75. Even two weeks in the sun isn't nearly enough time to unwind.
But don't get me wrong...aside from everyone drinking too much and fighting with each other, we had a great time.
Nobody freaked and I didn't show anybody anything. I did take note that the other guitar players were NOT happy when I was re-assigned from bass to guitar!
I'm sure Ronnie didn't like me playing bass for two reasons. 1) Leon's more of an intuitive bass player and 2) I'm really a guitar player. The bass is my first love but that's only because I've learned how to do it better.
Q - When Ronnie asked you to quit bass and become the 3rd guitarist, do you think he had a master plan to have 3 guitars or was it simply a way to bring Leon back and keep you in the band because he liked you but not your bass playing? I know he told you he didn't like your bass playing but I wonder if he said that more in jest and had plans to go to 3 guitars.
I was just glad I wasn't FIRED. I think he meant it when he said he didn't like my bass playing...but I believe he had a hunch about my guitar playing.
Back in the Clock days, I only played bass on one song...and Ronnie said he remembered that and liked it. THAT's how I got the job! No kidding.
Q - When you signed your contract with Al Kooper/Sounds of the South back in 72/73 and he paid LS the $9,000 (or was it $10K), how much of this did you get and what did you buy with it? How were you paid (did checks come directly to you)?
Ronnie cashed the check from Kooper and literally brought all the money to Hell House. Once we were all there, he threw the money up in the air and we just sat there for a while looking at it laying everywhere while drinking some beer. Once we started gigging, everyone in the band was paid $300 per week. We didn't see royalty checks for a long time.
Q - You didn't rush out and buy a new guitar or amp? Man that's serious self control!
I DID get a new guitar that week. Found a '66 Strat at a pawn shop for $125...used it on all of Second Helping except for "Sweet Home..." I don't know where it is today. In February of '74 I found a 1960 original BLACK Strat at a pawnshop in Denver. Because it was a 'custom color', it was more money. $200.
Q - But prior to the contract signing, how did you get paid...did RVZ just give you cash or were you paid by Alan Walden?
I was in the band for close to a year before we all got on the $300 per week system. Prior to that, gig money was poured back into the band for equipment and for those that needed money to get by.
I was living with Ronnie for a while, so I didn't need any money. (4 times a year I had some ASCAP money rolling in from the SAC days and that helped.) Allen Collins had a family, so we'd make sure he was taken care of. We knew we had a record deal and it wouldn't be long before we could start drawing regular pay. But in the beginning, we just worked together to make sure we got by with everything we absolutely had to have.
Hope that explains it somewhat. Suffice it to say that, prior to the release of the first album, the band made very little money on the road. I really hopped on board right before the paychecks began. If I had been in the band 12 months prior to Kooper signing the band, it would've been VERY frustrating. You have to recognize how much Collins, Rossington & Van Zant believed and supported in each other in those early days.
The 'big picture' was pretty big and the bad deal we had with Kooper was turned around very early. MCA would've gotten the publishing anyway because that's the way the business worked back then.
I still think, looking back at the situation and the fact that the band had been turned down by EVERYBODY...we had no choice but to sign. We were too much into writing the music to care about money at that point. The important thing to us was GETTING HEARD. Looks like we thought 'longevity' when no one else did.
One time in Birmingham, right after our first album came out, we experienced our first limo ride from the gig back to the hotel. Big time stuff. When we got there, Ronnie demanded the night's take from our road manager, Russ. Russ told Ronnie he had the money but taxes had to be paid along with other expenses blah blah blah blah. Ronnie took the $15,000 in cash and gathered us all in one room.
Ronnie held the money in his hand peeling off hundreds. "You two played pretty good tonight, you get a thousand bucks each. And you did ok, too...you get a thousand bucks. You did what you were told, that's worth a thousand. You played some good licks...here's a grand. YOU,... (he wasn't talking to ME) ... you played like shit. You don't get NOTHIN'." Ronnie paid himself 2 grand. Lesson learned.
Q - When you first joined Lynyrd Skynyrd, how rough was it financially for the band?
The band barely supported itself doing gigs...if an amp needed a tube and we were broke, Ronnie would find the money somewhere. That's what band leaders are supposed to do! As I recall, once I was fully rehearsed with the band (by January '73), we gigged every weekend.
I believe we recorded 14 songs in one day. With the exception of SIMPLE MAN & MISSISSIPPI KID (which I hadn't even heard at that point), the songs on the first album were chosen from that demo session.
Q - I read on another website the band recorded two songs called "Spoonful" and "Michelle" in Atlanta Georgia for a prize from winning the battle of the bands. Was "Spoonful" an original song by them or a CREAM cover?
A cover...the band only had two originals (MICHELLE & CAN'T KEEP A GOOD MAN DOWN). The rest of their music was Zep, Cream, Hendrix, Yardbirds, etc.
Q - When did "Need All My Friends" come around?
Not until AFTER they were the opening act for my band (SAC). NEED ALL MY FRIENDS was probably the LAST song I ever heard them play while rehearsing at The Comic Book club one afternoon. To my knowledge, it was their 3rd original song...and most definitely signs of things to come.
Myke: Happy Memorial Day 2016-Thank You Veterans !
May 29, 2016 12:45:16 GMT -5
michaeljames: Thanks for the add........... !
Sept 28, 2016 15:57:05 GMT -5
Captainkirk: He Ed , Kikk here just felt like saying Hi
Nov 5, 2016 13:09:42 GMT -5
findthesun: I love the old RCB photos, brings back a lot of great memories!
Nov 21, 2016 14:42:43 GMT -5
tonytrout: Howdy, fellow Ed King fans!!! How are we on this bitterly cold Sunday morning??
Jan 8, 2017 11:26:04 GMT -5
macfangus: New member here. I'm a huge fan of Ed King era LS.
Feb 7, 2017 19:54:58 GMT -5
shaw: I wonder if Zap is around.I found a guitar someone was throwing out and it has Zapp on the headstock. Turns out its one of those Law Suit era Les Pauls. I'm putting it back together it was only the body & neck, with no hardware but I got all the parts now.
Apr 8, 2018 12:09:40 GMT -5
Zap: No relation to me, LOL, but you can gift it to me when you are done restoring it if you like! LOL!
Apr 17, 2018 6:34:05 GMT -5
rebel1222: Whats the point of having a forum if noone can reply to, or create threads?
Nov 28, 2018 8:49:07 GMT -5
gman620: @ rebel1222: Anyone is free to start a new topic or reply to any thread, anytime he or she desires. You've been a member for over three years now, with zero posts, so what's stopping you?
Nov 29, 2018 21:48:09 GMT -5
rocker2462: Looking for info on Ed's red Strat with the tele neck? point me in the right direction please.
Feb 19, 2019 0:47:14 GMT -5
stevecamp: I believe it was was a Warmoth body, aftermarket pickups, an old tele neck.
Mar 5, 2019 16:59:18 GMT -5
stevecamp: Pick ups may have been "lindy Fralins"
Mar 5, 2019 17:00:08 GMT -5