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Rockin’ At The Crossroads With Skynyrd

By: Rusty Russell/Getty Images

Wishing Gary Rossington a very happy belated birthday.  He turned 60 yesterday, born on December 4, 1951 in Jacksonville,  Florida. A founding member of Lynyrd Skynyrd, Rossington plays lead and rhythm guitar for the band.

To mark the occasion, I’ve posted  Skynyrd’s fine take on the song, “Crossroads” below.  The song (made most-recognizable by Cream, of course) is a variation of bluesman Robert Johnson’s “Crossroad Blues”, which has been most strongly associated with Johnson supposedly selling his soul to the devil in exchange for blues mastery. The song, however, likely has different, more down-to-earth (but equally chilling) origins.

At least one historian claims that Johnson is probably describing the fear and horror of being out on the road trying to no avail to hitch a ride as night approaches (as a black man in the south back in the day there was the likely possibility of being lynched).

Still others believe that the song itself is cursed, wreaking havoc on the lives of many who’ve recorded it, including Skynyrd, Eric Clapton, and The Allman Brothers.

Whatever you choose to believe, hopefully we can all agree on one thing:  it’s a great tune and Skynyrd rocks it well!

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