Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Since you asked..........

I know a little about the Lynryd Skynyrd vs. Neil Young thing. It all started when Neil wrote and released this song:
B, listen at your own risk

Southern man
better keep your head
Don't forget
what your good book said
Southern change
gonna come at last
Now your crosses
are burning fast
Southern man

I saw cotton
and I saw black
Tall white mansions
and little shacks.
Southern man
when will you
pay them back?
I heard screamin'
and bullwhips cracking
How long? How long?

Southern man
better keep your head
Don't forget
what your good book said
Southern change
gonna come at last
Now your crosses
are burning fast
Southern man

Lily Belle,
your hair is golden brown
I've seen your black man
comin' round
Swear by God
I'm gonna cut him down!
I heard screamin'
and bullwhips cracking
How long? How long?

As you can see, he is referring to slavery and the old days, and then he talks of burning crosses (stuff that was going on in the present day). He is kind of like, "hello! Are you guys going to drop the hate and degradation anytime soon?". Well, Lynyrd Skynyd took offense to this. They were a Southern love band that even used the confederate flag as album covers from time to time. They retaliated that they thought the South was doing just fine and wrote a song about their home sweet home. They spoke specifically to Neil by saying:


Well I heard mister young sing about her
Well, I heard ole neil put her down
Well, I hope neil young will remember
A southern man dont need him around anyhow

Sweet home alabama
Where the skies are so blue
Sweet home alabama
Lord, Im coming home to you

In birmingham they love the governor
Now we all did what we could do
Now watergate does not bother me
Does your conscience bother you?
Tell the truth

As you can see, they thought things were just fine and Neil can take a hike. Now I don't know how deep this feud went and how much was kind of tongue in cheek. I tend to think they weren't THAT offended and it was all just for fun. A few members did die in a crash, including the lead singer and the rumor is that he was buried in a Neil Young t shirt.

I just looked up a couple tidbits from songfacts.com and here are two of interest:

One of the verses is an attack on Neil Young: "I hope Neil Young will remember a southern man don't need him around anyhow." Young had written songs like "Southern Man" and "Alabama," which implied that people in the Southern US were racist and stuck in the past. Skynyrd responded with this, a song about Southern pride and all the good things in Alabama. The feud between Lynyrd Skynyrd and Neil Young was always good-natured fun; they were actually big fans of each other. Ronnie Van Zant often wore Neil Young T-shirts on stage and is wearing one on the cover of Street Survivors, the last Skynyrd album before his death.

Neil Young performed this once. He played it at a memorial to the 3 members of Lynyrd Skynyrd who died in a plane crash in 1977.

If you listen carefully to the line, "Well, I heard Mr. Young sing about her," immediately following it, someone in the background sings, "Southern Man." Some people thought it was a recording of Neil Young, but it was their producer, Al Kooper, impersonating Young.

The first of those, backed up my comment that it was a good natured feud.



7 comments:

Marcus and Haley Crook said...

Interesting, thanks Em!

Pops said...

Wow, that more than I ever wanted to learn about Neil Young or Lynyrd Skynyrd.

Marcus and Haley Crook said...

HAHA! Em, did you make that playlist purple on purpose just for B??

Emily said...

I must confess, when I was making the playlist and it gave me options and I saw purple, my finger worked on it's own accord! It was being very devious.

Sue said...

ha,ha,ha! It didn't hit me until Haley mentioned it that not only is it a Neil song, it's purple! Your finger worked on it's own accord? What a crock! It cracks me up and I would have totally done the same thing. Why not be a little devious when you can?

Emily said...

heh heh heh

B said...

All right. So in addition to Pascow and the dead bodies, we now have an entire blog entry devoted to Niel and the Van Zants, complete with purple header. Great.

I didn't know I was spelling Niel wrong but now that I know, I will only spell Neil Diamond correctly, not Niel Young. Because Niel is wrong and Neil is good.