They are for the crowd that knew the bars, clubs, restaurants and music of the 60's, 70's, 80's and 90's. They are reminders of the best of times spent with family and friends at the best places, those places, back then.
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Hattiesburg Retro Apparel
On October 20, 1977, three days after releasing their album Street Survivors, Lynyrd Skynyrd's chartered Convair CV-240 airplane ran out of fuel near the end of their flight from Greenville, South Carolina, to Baton Rouge, Louisiana. The band had just performed at the Greenville Memorial Auditorium and were to play at Louisiana State University upon arriving in Baton Rouge.
Upon realizing that the plane had insufficient fuel, the pilots attempted an emergency landing on a small rural airstrip. Despite their efforts, the plane crashed in a forest near Gillsburg, Mississippi. Lead singer/founding member Ronnie Van Zant, guitarist/vocalist Steve Gaines, backing vocalist Cassie Gaines, assistant road manager Dean Kilpatrick, pilot Walter McCreary, and copilot William Gray all died in the crash.
Cassie Gaines had been so fearful of flying in the Convair that she had preferred to travel in the band's cramped equipment truck instead, but Ronnie Van Zant convinced her to board the plane on October 20 Keyboard player Billy Powell's nose was nearly torn off as he suffered severe facial lacerations and deep lacerations to his right leg. Decades later Powell gave a lurid account of the flight's final moments on a VH1 Behind The Music special. He said Van Zant, who wasn't wearing a seat belt, was thrown violently from his seat and died immediately when his head impacted a tree as the plane broke apart. Some elements of Powell's version of the events, however, have been disputed by both drummer Artimus Pyle and Van Zant's widow Judy Van Zant Jenness, who posted the autopsy reports on the band's web site in early 1998 to "set the record straight", while essentially confirming Powell's account. Pyle suffered broken ribs but managed to flee the crash site and alert authorities after reaching a nearby farmhouse.
Another member of the band's trio of back-up singers (collectively known as the "Honkettes"), JoJo Billingsley, was not on the plane; she was home sick and planned to join the tour in Little Rock, Arkansas, on October 23. Billingsley said that she had dreamed of the plane crash and begged guitarist/founding member Allen Collins by telephone not to continue using the Convair.
It was later discovered that the very same Convair CV-240 involved in the crash had earlier been inspected by members of Aerosmith's flight crew for possible use in 1977, but it was rejected because it was felt that neither the plane nor the crew were up to standards. Aerosmith's assistant chief of flight operations, Zunk Buker, told of observing pilots McCreary and Gray sharing a bottle of Jack Daniel's while he and his father inspected the plane. Aerosmith's touring family were quite shaken after receiving word of the crash, as Steven Tyler and Joe Perry had pressured their management into renting that specific plane for use on their 1977 American tour."The National Transportation Safety Board determined that the probable cause of this accident was fuel exhaustion and total loss of power from both engines due to crew inattention to fuel supply. Contributing to the fuel exhaustion were inadequate flight planning and an engine malfunction of undetermined nature in the right engine which resulted in "torching" and higher-than-normal fuel consumption."
On the American Top 40 show of February 25, 1978, Casey Kasem reported that musical act LeBlanc & Carr had been bumped from the ill-fated flight. The bands were touring together, and last-minute changes prevented the duo from boarding the plane after initially being offered seats.
October 21, 1977 front page of McComb's Enterprise-Journal
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Original album cover to Street Survivors
Mississippi Retro Apparel
Mississippi Retro Apparel
Lynyrd Skynyrd's Plane Crashes in Gillsburg, Mississippi
Lynyrd Skynyrd''s Plane Crash - Gillsburg
Convair CV-240 plane carrying Lynyrd Skynyrd on October 20, 1977
Street Survivors album cover released after the plane crash
Mississippi Retro Apparel are wearable flashbacks from years gone by.
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