Johnny Van Zant Thinks Lynyrd Skynyrd Is Intimidating For New Members
Johnny Van Zant recently joined an interview with Goldmine to talk about honoring Lynyrd Skynyrd’s legacy after the loss of Gary Rossington. Zant also addressed the lineup changes in the band. When he was asked whether new members feel any intimidation about joining Lynyrd Skynyrd, Johnny said:
“I’m sure, but we’re all brothers. A lot of us have been here for a long time, and I’m sure it’s intimidating for someone new. They’re all nervous when they come in because it is Lynyrd Skynyrd, and that’s an iconic band. And, hey, I can tell you they feel no different than I did back in ’87.”
The singer also mentioned that he used to feel nervous about his performance and added:
“I was scared sh*tless. I was like, Oh my God, what am I doing here? You know, big mistake. What am I doing? It took me probably a good five years to feel that the fans are coming back. So I must be doing an OK job. And I gotta tell you, I don’t know if this nervousness or anxiety or whatever will ever go away. Every night before the show, it’s like, ‘Don’t talk to me. Let me get my head in the game because I got to be Johnny, the guy singing with Lynyrd Skynyrd.’”
One of the founding members of Lynyrd Skynyrd, Gary Rossington, passed away on March 5, 2023. After his passing, the surviving members of the band decided to continue their careers to honor his legacy. Rossington was replaced by Damon Johnson.
Lynyrd Skynyrd’s Decision To Continue With New Members After Gary Rossington’s Passing
Although they faced many significant losses during their career, Lynyrd Skynyrd always found a way to come back strong. After losing their last surviving founding member, the band released a statement to announce their decision to continue to perform live to honor their late bandmate. The official statement reads:
“The current members of the band, led by Johnny Van Zant, the singer for the past 36 years, were unsure if they would continue following Gary’s untimely passing. After much discussion with the band, the families of Ronnie Van Zant and Allen Collins, and Dale Rossington, the collective has reached unified support and feel that continuing to perform live and keeping the music alive is in the best interest of the fans and everyone involved.”
Last year, Lynyrd Skynyrd announced a co-headlining tour, Sharp Dressed Simple Man Tour, with ZZ Top. The tour includes 36 concerts set to take place from March through September 2024.
You can see Lynyrd Skynyrd’s tour announcement and the concert dates via X below.
Skynyrd Nation!! We heard ya! We're bringing the Sharp Dressed Simple Man Tour with @ZZTop to a city near you in 2024! We can’t wait to celebrate 50 Years of Skynyrd with you! Presale starts tomorrow with code SKYNYRD50 pic.twitter.com/NytmnDz3qx
— Lynyrd Skynyrd (@Skynyrd) October 30, 2023