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Jamband artists salute Lynyrd Skynyrd


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from www.billboard.com

Edited By Jonathan Cohen. August 13, 2004, 2:30 PM ET

Gov't Mule, Claypool Salute Skynyrd

Gov't Mule, Primus' Les Claypool, Blues Traveler and the Drive-By Truckers are among the acts getting down and dirty on "Under the Influence -- A Jam Band Tribute to Lynyrd Skynyrd," Billboard.com can reveal. Due Oct. 5 via Sanctuary, the 11-track collection also boasts contributions from Big Head Todd and the Monsters, the North Mississippi Allstars, Galactic and moe. with John Hiatt.

Gov't Mule takes on "Simple Man," a song the band "has performed several times prior to this recording," says frontman Warren Haynes. "It's amazing what you can do with three chords, if they're the right three chords."

Big Head Todd tackles "Sweet Home Alabama," one of the most enduring rock tracks of the 1970s. "It was very challenging to give the song a new interpretation," admits vocalist/guitarist Todd Mohr. "The track was a blast to work on and I think we were successful in honoring the song, while presenting it in a completely contemporary setting."

Other Skynyrd cuts that have been redone for the tribute include the immortal "Free Bird" (Blues Traveler), "Call Me the Breeze" (Claypool), "Every Mother's Son" (Drive-By Truckers), "Ballad of Curtis Loew" (moe. and Hiatt), "Gimme Three Steps" (Disco Biscuits), "Whiskey Rock a Roller" (North Mississippi Allstars), "Four Walls of Raiford" (Yonder Mountain String Band), "Saturday Night Special" (Galactic) and "Workin' for MCA" (Particle).

Skynyrd is in the midst of summer headlining dates, which will run through Sept. 30 in Bloomsburg, Pa. The group will then begin a co-headlining tour with fellow southern rock legends the Allman Brothers Band Oct. 1 in Raleigh, N.C.

-- Jonathan Cohen, N.Y.

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