1. I Ain't the One 2. Tuesday's Gone 3. Gimme Three Steps 4. Simple Man 5. Things Goin' On 6. Mississippi Kid 7. Poison Whiskey 8. Free Bird
The cover shot - that was the very last picture we took that day. We were standing on Main St. in Jonesboro, Georgia - a storm was coming down from Atlanta. After the guy took the picture he said "Cool - I think I got a lightning bolt in that one." So, yes, the lightning IS real. From what I understand, it still looks the same! I haven't been back since.
After that was taken, Gary ran over to the curb and threw up. Hangover. And Bob Burns still had residue of blood in his eyes from where he'd gotten brass-knuckled at a bar 3 weeks prior. I was there and saw that...weird, wild stuff. Wrong place, wrong time.
Though the liner notes on PRONOUNCED say I learned Leon's composed parts, that's not really true. There were no notes or tapes for me to listen to, so I came up with the bass parts myself with the exception of the guitar solo section in SIMPLE MAN. That was written by Leon (and showed to me by Allen).
Al Kooper put in the titles for the first two albums...
Ronnie suggested one night that we go back out to Hell House to eat some Psilocybin mushrooms. I'd been in the band about a week. Ronnie made some mushroom tea and we jammed a bit on AIN'T THE ONE. That's when I came up with my bass part. (I wish'd I could've heard Leon play it before I learned the song.)
Q - On I AIN'T THE ONE, is there some sort of "effect" or "something" that sounds like a high-hat was recorded and played backwards throughout that entire song. What is that sound? I've wondered this for years.
You get that sound by flipping the master tape over, playing the hi-hat track backwards and recording it on an open track WITH reverb. When you re-flip the master tape back to normal, the reverb happens BEFORE the hi-hat. Thanks to Al Kooper....and I'm quite sure he lifted the idea from someone else.
Q - Who wrote the rhythm part for the main solo in "I Ain't the One"? That's one b!tch of a section to replicate correctly, but at the same it was way ahead of its time. It takes Southern Boogie into a whole new level.
Probably Rossington...that was one song that was very concrete in its arrangement when I arrived. I added one bass riff (going into the buildup before Allen's solo) but otherwise just followed their directions. That song and THREE STEPS were all there. All I had to do was plug in and play. AND LEARN IT.
Q - What i'd really like to know is what is "telly......... telly telly" at the end of Things Goin On?
Ain't you got EARS?! "TELL IT! TELL IT!" (I guess unless you knew Ronnie, you might have trouble dissecting his syllables.)
As mad as I am today, the piano part is WAY TOO HAPPY. I love it, though...maybe it's one those guys up there getting high who's playing it...and counting his money. Man...this song is GREAT.
I don't think Billy even realized what he was doing...he's not too good at listening to the lyrics until the song is long completed. So his devil-may-care piano work sounds SO OPPOSED to Ronnie's complaining about the government. IT'S HILARIOUS. I don't even smoke weed anymore and I can tell that those musicians KNOW THEY CAN'T DO SQUAT ABOUT THE PROBLEM. Man, that's funny stuff.
SIMPLE MAN was the first song that I learned with the band. It was the last song that the band recorded because we were short one song.
One day during rehearsals, while I was still playing bass, Leon stopped by. Ronnie suggested I give the bass to Leon so they could show me the song SIMPLE MAN... I hadn't heard it yet. They played it and I loved the tune. After hearing Leon, I gained a whole new perspective about the bass. That's why "SIMPLE MAN and FREEBIRD" have distinctly different bass parts than the other cuts on that record.
The only part of Leon's that I used on SIMPLE MAN was during the guitar solo section....everything else on that song was my idea.
We drove up to Atlanta and set up in the studio and told Al, “We’ve got one more tune to play you.” He hadn't heard it. We played it and Al didn't care for it and said "You're not putting that song on the album". Ronnie escorted Al outside and opened the door to his Bentley. Al got in and Ronnie stuck his head through the window and told him, “When we are done cutting it I will give you a call.” When he came back it was done. (Just think...had it not been for Ronnie's solid-brass-balls, you might not have heard that tune.)
Al came back a few hours later, added the organ part and it was a keeper. I don't think any band before or since, making its debut album, could get away with doing that to the record producer. There was a healthy respect happening there...and that is a really funny story that reflects that.
It was one of the best songs on the album. It was good enough for a beer commercial.
Q - Did Gary create the SIMPLE MAN solo? It doesn't sound like his signature licks...sounds more Allen-ish.
I wasn't in the band when SIMPLE MAN was written. So I can't say who came up with the idea for the solo.
I agree with you, the signature licks DO sound very Allen-ish. The result sure seems like a perfect combination of their two minds. The bass part Leon wrote for that solo still stands out to me. It's a HIGHLY original part that I NEVER would've come up with in a thousand years.
The Mellotron was performed by one Roosevelt Gook (known to his friends as Al Kooper), Atlanta Rhythm Section drummer Robert Nix also sat in on that song. Harmonica on the song was supplied by Blood, Sweat and Tears man Steve Katz. Long time friend and future .38 Special guitarist Jeff Carlisi also provided input, which was rewarded with thanks on the albums liner notes.
After I heard Kooper's bass part to TUESDAY, I was a little annoyed that I didn't do it myself. I was 'over-thinking' the part, I guess - so Kooper did it himself.
Q - Did you guys think that Robert Nix was better suited for the song
The reason Burns didn't play on TUESDAYS GONE is because his drumming just wasn't 'heavy' enough for such a slow song. Other than I NEED YOU, I can't think of a slower Skynyrd song. TUESDAY needed more than it had to occupy the 2nd slot on a debut album.
Robert Nix LEANS on his drums when he plays...you can just about hear them creak. Robert's a big boy...he towers over his drum kit. Listen to those drum fills in the verses (especially midway through the last one). For that matter, take a listen to ALL of that old Atlanta Rhythm Section stuff.
I'll bet most people don't know that, originally, FREEBIRD did NOT have the long jam at the end. Supposedly, Rossington came up with that idea one night in a nightclub (before I joined the band) because they needed more time to fill the set. Too bad he never got "credit" for that most creative "juice".
The first time I heard that tune, I had mixed emotions. Remember, I joined the band as a bass player - so my vantage point was a bit skewed - I couldn't think of the song in terms of guitar parts.
After the song was recorded & mixed, I really came to like it. I never knew it would become a staple of FM radio. This past week I had to drive back and forth to Omaha and heard the song twice. And I play radio roulette the whole way.
My mixed emotions returned in '87 when I had to learn Allen's lead parts. NOT EASY!!
Rossington told me he'd been cheated out of royalties on FREEBIRD because it was HE who came up with the end part. Then someone posted an old Ronnie interview where he says it was ALLEN who came up with it. Now Bob says it was Larry.
Bob says (through wife Marsha) "During a band practice at Larry Junstrum's parents house, after the slow part was rehearsed, LJ just kept playing and everyone joined in. It was totally creative and spontaneous. Everyone liked it so they decided to keep in and develop it as a permanent part of the song. the rest is history!"
Q - What Guitars were used in recording FREEBIRD?
Allen used his Firebird (a modified late 60s), Gary used a 70s Les Paul (that was later stolen in San Francisco) and I used a '65 Fender Jazz Bass. When Leon rejoined the band, I acquired the 70s Strat and also broke out a '64 Gibson SG Standard which I used on FREEBIRD and AM I LOSIN.
I've still never heard ANYONE play my bass part to FREE BIRD the way I played it. That was a REAL GOOD bass line. Also, SIMPLE MAN. But I believe I recorded those after Leon had stopped by rehearsal and I heard him play. A revelation, indeed.
Q - I don't care what town of the good ol' USA, at some point in their set, EVERY BAR BAND hears someone scream "FREE BIRD!!" Do you have any clue where this stems from and how it spread so rapidly through out maybe even the WORLD? It's gotta be kinda funny to you guys. I've always wondered this and I'm sure Allen got a big chuckle out of it.
I think the whole thing started when the Allmans released "Live at the Fillmore" and that guy in the audience shouted "Whipping Post!!" Then, from '74 onward, it was either that song or "Freebird."
Q - Did you ever ask Billy why he created a part for FREEBIRD when he was just a roadie for the band?
Billy and I came into the band at the same time. We worked up FREEBIRD with his piano part long before we laid it to tape. Seemed like a fine idea at the time.
Once we recorded it, some idiot put a Hammond B3 on the intro and ruined it!
Q - On PRONOUNCED, according to the liner notes, you play bass on every song and lead guitar on MISSISSIPPI KID. Did you not play any other guitar parts on that album?
I doubled the bass part (using my Strat) on THINGS GOIN ON and there's some of my picking going on behind Billy's solo in TUESDAYS GONE. Also doubled my bass part (using the Strat) during the dual guitar solo on SIMPLE MAN. Mostly stuff you wouldn't notice.
Q - I've never heard of doubling the bass parts with a guitar, I suppose it was to improve the sound somehow. Is it common to do it on studio recordings or was it just an idea you got?
I did it whenever I felt it needed it. You might not hear it, but I sure do. It just fattens up the bass by throwing another octave in the mix.
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
mdfan: Hey Ed King FANS come on over to SKYNYRD FRYNDS FORUM and join the party
Sept 24, 2020 2:51:13 GMT -5
Zap: Welcome back Ed Heads!!!!
Aug 12, 2023 10:47:34 GMT -5
ls1fan: Howdy! Hope we get some posters back. I used to love this place for all the info and of course, reading about Ed, may her rest in peace
Aug 12, 2023 15:17:20 GMT -5
GONZO: Hey ZAP!! Yes this place has been missed along with our exhausted ruler Ed. Took off my shoes and will wait for some other characters to show up.
Aug 14, 2023 9:33:08 GMT -5
GONZO: I see that Joe Barnes had liked the new post. How are you doing Joe. Wondering if you have been to the new memorial in Mississippi or any of the Jacksonville festivities. I did see an interview with you at Garys celebration of life at Whiteys Fish Camp!
Aug 14, 2023 9:37:42 GMT -5
GONZO: Is anyone following Craig Reeds "The Stoned Roadie" podcasts on Youtube? He is up to like 90 episodes and a lot of it has been fun to see. Okay I am done rambling on now! LOL
Aug 14, 2023 9:39:06 GMT -5
flgator: All hail our Highly Exhausted Ruler! Gonzo, yep I am following The Stoned Roadie podcast too. Hopefully some of the old gang will start to trickle back to the forum.
Aug 14, 2023 19:41:48 GMT -5
Southern Swede: Hi Zap and all other friends! I've really missed this place and the good old activity from past. I'm just fine - How about you?
Aug 15, 2023 5:46:41 GMT -5
enogy: Zap, thanks for reviving this forum, I always enjoy the info and history here.
Aug 15, 2023 10:52:20 GMT -5
bpwannab: Glad see it is back. Thanks for the invite Zap! Wish you and forum the best of success.
Aug 16, 2023 10:12:12 GMT -5
Chris: Thanks Allan’s!
Aug 29, 2023 20:09:59 GMT -5
randy: Hey everyone. Nice to see this forum is back. So I don't know if anyone remembers me but Ed and I were born in the same town same year and the same hospital. We went to grammer school together. As kids we called him Cal. This won't let me write anymore.
Aug 30, 2023 12:51:28 GMT -5
randy: Are we limited to how much we can say.
Aug 30, 2023 12:52:48 GMT -5
starrider: Been a long time, thanks for putting life back into it.
Sept 15, 2023 9:54:35 GMT -5
Johnny-O: Thx Zap - appreciate your effort to get things rolling here again!
Sept 28, 2023 21:58:12 GMT -5
GONZO: Just passing through looks like it been a while
Jan 19, 2024 11:24:55 GMT -5