The Unforgettable Lynyrd Skynyrd Concert - And Response

Thursday, August 15, 2013

I would like to say thanks to John Shearer and the editors at the Mountain Mirror and www.chattanoogan.com for running the article detailing Lynyrd Skynyrd's appearance at Baylor in 1973.  I was a student attending that evening, my junior year, and it was one I will never forget.

Those were the days of change, for better or worse, when Vietnam, the first televised war, was coming to its unglamorous end, and rock and roll, with its anti-establishment message was challenging our parents' notions and morals.  I will never forget the look of utter shock on some of the faculty faces when they saw the "hippies" that comprised the band, with their long, long hair, tattoos and ragged bell-bottom jeans.  They might as well have been Hell's Angels bikers as far as the teachers were concerned. 

I remember that after they had played a couple of songs, and no one was dancing yet, Van Zandt stepped up to the mic and admonished the students for not dancing, saying that the band would play a song that maybe we could relate to.  They broke into "Chattanooga Choo Choo," which got a laugh, but it broke the ice and everyone started dancing after that.

I was very impressed with the music, and during their first break I approached the band, told them as much.  I told them they should really consider recording an album, not knowing they had already recorded "Pronounced."  The reaction was underwhelming.  They didn't even bother to tell this preppie school kid that they already had an album, they just mumbled like, "Yeah, great. Thanks kid." 

Ever since that day, whenever I meet a Skynyrd fan, I always brag that they played at my high school dance, and I count myself among the very few present that special night who have ever heard their rendition of "Chattanooga Choo Choo."  Thanks Joe (Martin)!

Mark Robinson
Georgetown, S.C. 

* * * 

I would like to say thanks to the Chattanoogan.com and Mark Robinson for posting the story about Skynyrd playing at Baylor. I pride myself on rock trivia and also Chattanooga trivia and I'm humbled to admit I've never heard this story. I think it's cool. Thanks for sharing some Chatt-town cultural history.  

Chris Wilson


Send Your Opinions To Chattanoogan.com

We welcome your opinions at Chattanoogan.com. Email to news@chattanoogan.com . We require your real first and last name and contact information. There is no word limit, but if your article is too long you may lose your reader. Please focus more on issues than personal attacks. (click for more)

Roy Exum: A Veterinarian’s Horse Sense

I suspect you’ve heard by now that a doctor in New York City, who volunteers with “Doctors Without Borders,” just got back from the African nation of Guinea on October 17 – last Friday – and on Thursday tested positive for the deadly Ebola virus. Luckily, he came in actual contact with only a few people but he reportedly rode a subway, took a taxi, went on a three-mile run and ... (click for more)

2 People Shot Saturday Night On Carousel Road

Two people were shot Saturday evening on Carousel Road. At  9:11 p.m. , Chattanooga Police responded to 1406 Carousel Road on a call of a person shot. One victim on the scene suffered minor injuries.  Another victim was transported by personal vehicle to a local hospital. The s econd victim suffered non-life-threatening injuries.  The suspect ... (click for more)

Teenager Killed In ATV Accident Thursday Night

Damon Lee Jones, 15, was killed Thursday night in an ATV accident in Walker County. It was reported he was riding with a 17-year old, when they tried to enter a church parking lot, but ran into a cable barrier. The accident happened on Dunwoody Road in LaFayette. The other rider, identified as Timothy J. Wallin, was not injured.   (click for more)

Alabama Wins 34-20, But Vols Find A Gung-Ho QB In Dobbs

(Story will be updated) KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – Tennessee now has renewed hope for success down the home stretch of the 2014 football season. And, maybe a bowl game is more a reality now than it was a week ago. It’s quarterback Joshua Dobbs. Dobbs, who hadn’t taken a snap all season, rallied the Vols from a 27-0 deficit and turned in a sterling performance against fourth-ranked ... (click for more)

Notre Dame edges Boyd Buc, 1-0 in Girls Soccer

Notre Dame senior Liz Ciabattone scored in the fifth minute and then the Irish held off a battling Boyd Buchanan team for the next 85 minutes for a 1-0 triumph in an A-AA sectional match. The victorious Irish along with Chattanooga Christian (2-0 winner against Grace) advance to the state quarters next Wednesday in Murfreesboro. “It’s good to get the win and advance to the ... (click for more)