SEP 25, 2012 – (Photo credit: CC/JayUzi) The classic southern rock band Lynyrd Skynyrd, known through the years for using the Confederate flag on their album covers and onstage, have finally decided to stop using the flag as a symbol onstage and on any further albums. The current members sat down with Fredricka of CNN for a "Face to Face" interview (watch below) and spoke about the band's evolution and the decision to stop using the Confederate flag that is so highly offensive to many people. One of the original founding members, Gary Rossington, says in the video, “Through the years, people like the KKK and skinheads kinda kidnapped the Dixie or Southern flag from its tradition and the heritage of the soldiers, that’s what it was about. We didn’t want that to go to our fans or show the image like we agreed with any of the race stuff or any of the bad things.” The decision has angered some of their fans, and have accused them of "selling out" or being "too politically correct". One note, the "flag" they always have used over the years is actually the the "battle flag of the Army of Tennessee", not the CSA National Flag. This is what the actual CSA Flag looks like (well the main one, they went through 3 versions):
Personally, I feel it is about time. I will admit, I was a huge Lynyrd Skynyrd fan growing up in Virginia in my teens, and I unfortunately have to admit I also hung a confederate flag in my room next to their poster. Later, when I realized how offensive and horrible it looked, I took it down and haven't displayed one for 30 years. I support their decision. It's a shame for them to be caught up in this, because in their early years they wrote some good, progressive songs, such as "Things Goin' On" about poverty and the ghettos; and then of course the gun control song, "Saturday Night Special" saying "Lert's dump 'em all people, to the bottom of the sea". In the song "All I Can Do Is Write About It", Ronnie laments about over-development and the environmental impact: "Cuz when I see the concrete, a slowly creeping, Lord take me and mine before that comes." "The Ballad of Curtis Loew" was a song against racism.
Also, Lynyrd Skynyrd was booked to play the Republican National Convention in Tampa, but Hurricane Isaac forced them to cancel. It came up that two of the band members are "Democrats" and were kind of upset about the possible gig and it caused a little stir in the band, but they aren't breaking up or anything. It was mostly for a concert for wounded soldiers that was going to take place in Liberty Plaza that they wanted to play for, not the politics Gary Rossington told ABC News. Below is the CNN Interview: