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‘Turn It Up!: Love, Life and Death, Southern Rock Style’ Gives Us New Insight Into the Lynyrd Skynyrd Story [VIDEO]

Ronnie Van Zant of Lynyrd Skynyrd
Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images

If there were ever a rock and roll story that could be told over and over, it’s that of the band Lynyrd Skynyrd. Finally, tour manager Ron Eckerman has written what could be the most in-depth book about Skynyrd and the players in the band. Eckerman’s new book, ‘Turn It Up!: Love, Life and Death, Southern Rock Style‘ uncovers details about the band that lived the rock and roll dream and defined rock and roll tragedy.

We already know the basic story. It was forty years ago that the iconic southern rock quintet began its incredible rise to the top of the music world. The band shot to music superstardom with their amazing live performances and rock and roll anthems like ‘Free Bird’, ‘Simple Man’ and ‘Sweet Home Alabama’, and several other songs that music fans still sing along to, word-for-word. Then, in 1977, it all came to a tragic end as the band’s private plane crashed, killing lead singer Ronnie Van Zant, guitarist Steve Gaines, and backing vocalist Cassie Gaines and three others on the plane.

The details of the story have been written, documented, even sung about over and over. But now, we get an in-depth account of Lynyrd Skynyrd from someone who was there. Ron Eckerman was the band’s tour manager during their rise in popularity, the wild parties, the never-ending drama and the overindulgent rock and roll life the band lived. And he was a passenger on the plane when it went down, bringing the party to an abrupt halt.

As one of the surviving passengers of the plane crash that silenced one of the greatest rock bands ever, Eckerman’s story gives an opportunity for fans of the band in the 70’s to learn new things about Lynyrd Skynyrd. For the younger generation, ‘Turn It Up!’ will educate them thoroughly about the creators of some of their favorite sing-along drinking songs.

The book itself is an easy read. Eckerman isn’t a novice writer, by any means. Whether you’re a bookworm or not, ‘Turn It Up!’ will grab your attention and make it very difficult to put the book down. Music historians can consider this book as much a ‘must-read’ as Lynyrd Skynyrd is a ‘must-mention’ in the discussion of greatest rock bands ever.

Here’s vintage, live Lynyrd Skynyrd, ‘Sweet Home Alabama':

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