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Lynyrd Skynyrd - 'One More For The Fans' http://rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/16/bc/94/Lynyrd-Skynyrd-One-More-For-The-Fans-82-1444331477.jpg Hot

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Essential for all fans of these Southern Hard Rock legends.

The second (2)CD/(2)DVD release this issue by the Southern Hard Rockers Lynyrd Skynyrd is the 40th Anniversary Concert that was recorded at the historic Fox Theatre in Atlanta, Georgia with a whole host of guests celebrating the music of the band. The title 'One More For The Fans' was inspired by the 'One More For The Road' live album recorded at the same venue back in 1976.

Keith Wortman, working alongside executive producers Ross Schilling and Ken Levitan, put the unique concert event together. Don Was on bass was the musical director for the evening, with an All-Star band of Michael Beardon on keyboards, Sonny Emory on drums, Audley Freed and George Marinelli on guitars, Jimmy Hall on harmonica and backing vocals, Jason Mingledorff on saxophone, Bobby Campo on trumpet, Mark Mullins on trombone, and sisters Ann, Freda and Regina McCrary on backing vocals. The guests appearing on this extraordinary evening were both young and old and from several genres including Americana, Country and Classic Rock.

Shot in high definition the DVD is superb and the sound quality is exceptional (the same goes for the audio discs). The DVD clocks in at one hour forty-two minutes and has been superbly edited, as I believe that the actual show ran in excess of four hours.

Country star Randy Houser gets the party started with 'Whiskey Rock A Roller' before pedal steel guitarist Robert Randolph & Southern Rocker Jimmy Hall continue the show with a great, Funked-up version of 'You Got That Right'. The brass section adds to all the performances and none more so than during the splendid version of 'Saturday Night Special' by Staind lead vocalist Aaron Lewis who sings the song as if he had been doing so all his life.

Announcing "it's great to be home", Southern Rock band of the moment Blackberry Smoke take on the Skynyrd classic 'Workin' For MCA' and deliver a faultless performance that clearly goes down well with the capacity crowd.

Young Rock band O.A.R. offer up their own take on 'Don't Ask Me No Questions' but are completely overshadowed by the fantastic Cheap Trick with their sensational version of 'Gimme Back My Bullets'. Shrewdly, the pace then drops with moe. & John Hiatt performing 'The Ballad of Curtis Loew'.

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Gov't Mule pay homage with a spine-chilling rendition of one of my personal favourite Skynyrd tracks 'Simple Man', with The Allman Brothers guitarist, Warren Haynes, remaining on stage for 'That Smell', another real highlight.

Country star Jamey Johnson gives his version of 'Four Walls of Raiford' before Jason Isbell picks up the pace once again with a Rockabilly interpretation of 'I Know A Little'. Peter Frampton doing the JJ Cale standard (that Skynyrd have adopted as their own) 'Call Me The Breeze' is simply magnificent whilst Trace Adkins puts his Country tones to the foot-tapping 'What's Your Name'.

'Down South Jukin'' receives a Country/Southern Rock mix with a duet featuring Charlie Daniels and .38 Special lead singer Donnie Van Zant (brother of Johnny and the late Ronnie). The entertaining 'Gimme Three Steps' shows up courtesy of Southern Rock band Alabama whilst 'Tuesday's Gone', with the unmistakeable voice of Gregg Allman, is another main highlight. Although both proud and humble, in equal measures, by all the evening's performers taking part, Allman was the one that the band themselves seemed most overwhelmed with.

The biggest cheer of the night, unsurprisingly, was reserved for the arrival of the main band themselves who open with 'Travelin' Man' that features an emotional duet with Johnny Van Zant and his much missed brother Ronnie Van Zant on the big screen. Images of the sadly departed ex-members of Lynyrd Skynyrd, and there have been a few, were displayed on the big screen, during the outstanding version of the seminal 'Free Bird' with Ricky Medlocke, Mark "Sparky" Matejka and Gary Rossington (only surviving original member still in the band) soloing like their lives depend on it.

There is a brief commentary by several of the guests, paying tribute to the band, before the concert is wrapped up with the whole, star-studded, cast on stage performing the classic 'Sweet Home Alabama'.

This is certainly one of those concerts that you would brag about being there if you had been that fortunate, however, the rest of us Lynyrd Skynyrd fans at least have this exceptional recording of the event. Essential for all fans of these Southern Hard Rock legends.

Mark Donnelly

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