Slash Joins Stacked CMT Awards Tribute to Lynyrd Skynyrd’s Gary Rossington
The 2023 CMT Music Awards closed out on Sunday (April 2) with a star-studded tribute jam for late Lynyrd Skynyrd guitarist Gary Rossington.
Rossington, the last original member of the Southern rock group, died at the age of 71 last month.
On hand for the tribute were Guns N' Roses' Slash, ZZ Top's Billy Gibbons and former Bad Company and Queen singer Paul Rodgers. Also present were Chuck Leavell (Allman Brothers, The Rolling Stones), Warren Haynes (Allman Brothers, Gov't Mule), LeAnn Rimes, Cody Johnson and Wynonna Judd.
Watch the video toward the bottom of this post.
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Slash, Gibbons and co. played "Simple Man" and "Sweet Home Alabama" as a salute to Rossington and Lynyrd Skynyrd during the CMT Music Awards ceremony at Austin, Texas' Moody Center on Sunday.
On March 5, Lynyrd Skynyrd revealed Rossington's death in statement on social media. "It is with our deepest sympathy and sadness that we have to advise, that we lost our brother, friend, family member, songwriter and guitarist, Gary Rossington," they said.
The band added, "Gary is now with his Skynyrd brothers and family in heaven and playing it pretty, like he always does. Please keep Dale, Mary, Annie and the entire Rossington family in your prayers and respect the family’s privacy at this difficult time."
The CMT Music Awards tribute to Rossington was introduced by guitar great Peter Frampton, who hailed the late musician as a "Southern rock icon" and said he's "joined his Skynyrd bandmates in rock & roll heaven, but we will all enjoy their music forever." Lynyrd Skynyrd's Johnny Van Zant (brother of the late Ronnie Van Zant) and guitarist Ricky Medlocke were in the audience, as Rolling Stone reported.
ZZ Top are touring with Skynyrd this summer. Longtime ZZ Top member Dusty Hill died in 2021; he was replaced on bass guitar in the band by ZZ Top guitar tech Elwood Francis. Guns N' Roses will tour the world again in 2023 — get Guns N' Roses tickets here.
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