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Lynyrd Skynyrd talks about performing at Nashville’s Big Bash for New Year’s Eve

Rickey Medlocke, the lead guitarist of Lynyrd Skynyrd, chatted about performing at Nashville’s Big Bash for New Year’s Eve.

Lynyrd Skynyrd
Lynyrd Skynyrd. Photo Credit: Doltyn Snedden
Lynyrd Skynyrd. Photo Credit: Doltyn Snedden

Rickey Medlocke, the lead guitarist of Lynyrd Skynyrd, chatted about performing at Nashville’s Big Bash for New Year’s Eve.

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame band

Medlocke plays lead guitar for the iconic southern rock group Lynyrd Skynyrd, which was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame back in 2006 in the “Performers” category. “When you get recognized for your craft and your art for what you do, it really does an incredible justice to your system,” he said.

“Getting inducted for us was an exciting night,” he admitted. “We had a great time, and we met a lot of our peers and some of our biggest influences, including Brian May of Queen. We ended up striking a friendship, and later on, many months later, he gave me one of his guitars. That was really cool.”

Nashville’s Big Bash

Lynyrd Skynyrd will be playing at CBS’ Nashville’s Big Bash alongside such musical acts as Lainey Wilson, Thomas Rhett, Old Dominion, Elle King (co-host), Bailey Zimmerman, Kane Brown, Cody Johnson, Hardy, Carly Pearce, Parker McCollum, Megan Moroney, Jackson Dean, Jon Pardi, and Grace Bowers, among others. “We are looking forward to the New Year’s Eve Bash in Nashville,” he said.

Two duo performances will include Blake Shelton with Trace Adkins, and Brothers Osborne with Trombone Shorty. This event will be televised on CBS. “We want to bring as many surprises to people as we possibly can,” he admitted.

On being a part of “Nashville Big Bash,” Medlocke said, “We are starting to put everything together, and we are talking about the setlist and the songs. It is going to be a blast. We will have some special guests that are going to be with us. We are really excited; it is going to be a fun time.”

“It will be another New Year, and we will go around the sun one more time,” he said. “We are going to go out on New Year’s Eve and make it the best one we can.”

This holiday season, he is looking forward to being with family, his wife Stacy, and giving thanks to being able to do what he does and having his family around.” “I am thankful for my daughter, who is all grown, and doing well,” he said. “Music is great for the soul.”

Musical influences

Musically, he was inspired by his grandfather and Medlocke grew up in a musical family. “In rock and roll, there were Elvis, The Beatles, Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton, Jimmy Page, Jeff Beck, Billy Gibbons, Link Wray, and an array of everybody. I was inspired by a lot of different people and just wanting to play guitar and to become a songwriter,” he said.

“My biggest influences was the blues… like a Mississippi delta country type of blues,” he added.

The digital age

On being an artist in the digital age, he explained, “The thing I love the most is listening to people’s perception of what you do, and their concept of what you do. They have their own perspective, and it gives you a lot to think about.”

Medlocke noted that the recent resurgence of vinyl is a “full circle moment” for him. “It is really weird how in the last few years, the whole vinyl thing has come back around,” he said.

“As a matter of fact, even in the studios, a lot of artists are recording on two-inch analog tapes, and analog sounds incredible. It is warm and it has a rich low end to it. I just find it great,” he elaborated.

Stage of his life

On the title of the current chapter of his life, Medlocke said, “Fiction.” “You can title it under fiction because nobody is going to believe me anyway,” he said with a sweet laugh. “It would be called ‘Welcome to my World’.”

Advice for young and aspiring musicians

For young and aspiring singer-songwriters, he said, “If you really feel within your heart that this is your destiny, stay focused and go for your dream.”

“We did, as young guys, we followed our hearts and dreams, and we made sure we were a part of something great. You need to have great songs to make sure people love hearing you, and wanting to come see you,” he elaborated.

“Write great songs, record great songs, and be the best musician that you can,” he added.

Favorite songs to play live from the Lynyrd Skynyrd catalog

He revealed that his favorite songs to play live would be a medley of “Tuesday’s Gone,” “The Needle And The Spoon,” and “Simple Man.”

Career-defining moment

A career-defining moment for Medlocke was when he first heard himself on the radio. “I couldn’t believe it,” he admitted. “I went ‘wow,’ there I am, I can’t believe it, and that really stuck with me hard.”

The Marshall Tucker Band

“The Marshall Tucker Band plays with us every so often on tour,” he said. “We’ve been friends with those guys for quite a few years now. They are just another band that goes out and does it every year playing their music.”

“Their lead singer, Doug Gray, is a great guy too. Doug is one of the best,” Medlocke exclaimed.

‘The Sharp Dressed Simple Man Tour’

He shared that next year, Lynyrd Skynyrd will be out on the road with ZZ Top as part of “The Sharp Dressed Simple Man Tour.”

Jones Beach Theater on Long Island

Medlocke praised Jones Beach Theater on Long Island for being one of his Top 2 venues to perform live at.

Success

On his definition of the word success, Medlocke said, “Being happy within yourself. I don’t think it’s defined by the fortune or the fame, or anything like that. It’s being happy within and knowing that you gave it your best and your all, and people appreciating what you did. Happiness within is what it’s all about.”

To learn more about Lynyrd Skynyrd, check out their official website, and follow them on Instagram and Facebook.

Markos Papadatos
Written By

Markos Papadatos is Digital Journal's Editor-at-Large for Music News. Papadatos is a Greek-American journalist and educator that has authored over 21,000 original articles over the past 18 years. He has interviewed some of the biggest names in music, entertainment, lifestyle, magic, and sports. He is a 16-time "Best of Long Island" winner, where for three consecutive years (2020, 2021, and 2022), he was honored as the "Best Long Island Personality" in Arts & Entertainment, an honor that has gone to Billy Joel six times.

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