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Each day, Rich Terfry and Radio 2 Drive wraps up your day with music and stories about the interesting things going on in the world.

RICH'S PICK: "If I Needed You" by Townes Van Zandt


An unexpected turn:

An amusement park for cats:


Every week, Rich Terfry looks back in our Rear-view Mirror at a great song from the good ol’ days. This week, Lynyrd Skynyrd's "Sweet Home Alabama."


Rich Terfry breaks down Neil Young and Lynyrd Skynyrd's musical feud

In the early '70s, there was a feud between Neil Young and Lynyrd Skynyrd that played out in song. But eventually, they patched things up.

It all started when Neil Young recorded "Southern Man", which addressed racism and slavery in the American South. Ronnie Van Zant of Lynyrd Skynyrd - himself a son of the South, from Jacksonville, Florida, didn't take too kindly. The way he saw it, Young was painting with broad strokes - "shooting all the ducks in order to kill one or two", as he put it. He felt he was being indicted for the deeds of a few bad apples. He responded by recording a song called "Sweet Home Alabama".

"Sweet Home Alabama" stirred up controversy too. Many interpreted the lyrics as being sympathetic to Alabama Governor George Wallace, who was noted supporter of segregation. 

Both musicians later answered to the controversy caused by their songs. Neil said in 2012 that he doesn't like the tone of the lyrics in "Southern Man" anymore. He said they are "accusatory and condescending, not fully thought out, and too easy to misconstrue". Van Zant said his song was misunderstood too and that he actually disagreed with most of Wallace's views, especially where race relations were concerned. 

Neil Young later said that he loved the Skynyrd song. He said "I'd rather play "Sweet Home Alabama" than "Southern Man" any day". And Van Zant reciprocated the appreciation. He can be seen wearing a Neil Young t-shirt on the cover of Lynyrd Skynyrd's last album. In fact, rumour is, he was buried in that very t-shirt.

Here's one of Lynyrd Skynyrd's biggest hits - a song that went to #6 on the charts in Canada in the summer of 1974 - here's "Sweet Home Alabama" on Rear View Mirror.

Here are some other great editions of Rear-view Mirror:

Bobbie Gentry - "Ode to Billie Joe"

The Beach Boys - "Never Learn Not to Love"

Johnny Cash - "Ring of Fire"

The Kinks - "You Really Got Me"

The Beatles - "Yesterday"

Al Green - "Let's Stay Together"

Simon and Garfunkel - "The Boxer"

Smokey Robinson and the Miracles - "Tracks of my Tears"

Elvis Presley - "Heartbreak Hotel"

Bruce Cockburn - "Lovers In A Dangerous Time"

The Doors - "Light My Fire"

Bob Dylan & Jimi Hendrix - "All Along The Watchtower"

The Clash - "London Calling"

Phil Spector and the Ronnettes - "Be My Baby"

Os Mutantes - "Ando Meio Desligado"

The Diamonds - "Little Darlin"

Captain Beefheart - "Yellow Brick Road"

Elton John - "Bennie and the Jets"

Hank Williams - "Long Gone Lonesome Blues"

R.E.M. - "What's the Frequency, Kenneth?"

Tom Waits - "Jockey Full of Bourbon"

Neil Diamond - "Sweet Caroline"

The Who - "Pinball Wizard"

Buffalo Springfield - "For What It's Worth"

Five Man Electrical Band - "Signs"

Band Aid - "Do They Know It's Christmas"

John Lennon - "Imagine"

The Ugly Ducklings - "Nothin"

Bob Dylan - "Tangled Up In Blue"

The Beatles - "Norwegian Wood"

The Pursuit of Happiness - "I'm An Adult Now"

Bruce Springsteen - "Born To Run"

Arcade Fire - "Wake Up"

Gnarls Barkley - "Crazy"

Big Joe Turner - "Shake Rattle and Roll"

Martha and the Muffins - "Echo Beach"

Wilson Pickett - "In The Midnight Hour"

The Band - "The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down"

Fleetwood Mac - "Go Your Own Way"

The Animals - "House of the Rising Sun"

Ian and Sylvia - "Four Strong Winds"

James Brown - "Please Please Please"

John Cougar Mellencamp - "Pink Houses'"

Leonard Cohen - "Suzanne"

The Ramones - "I Wanna Be Sedated"

Blue Rodeo - "Try"

The Guess Who - "American Woman"

U2 - "I Still Have't Found What I'm Looking For"

Janis Joplin - "Me and Bobby McGee"

Gordon Lightfoot - "If You Could Read My Mind"

The Byrds - "Eight Miles High"

Simon and Garfunkel - "The Sound of Silence"

Bill Haley and his Comets - "Rock Around The Clock"

The Velvet Underground - "I'm Waiting For The Man"

Johnny Cash - "Folsom Prison Blues"

Bobby Fuller - "I Fought The Law"

Big Star - "September Gurls"

The Hollies - "Bus Stop"

Joy Division - "Love Will Tear Us Apart"

Booker T and the MGs - "Green Onions"

Jimi Hendrix - "Hey Joe"

Neil Young - "Rockin' in the Free World"

Dolly Parton - "Jolene"

The Left Banke - "Walk Away Renee"

Lou Reed - "Walk On The Wild Side"

James Taylor - "Fire And Rain"

The Clash - "Should I Stay or Should I Go"

Marvin Gaye - "Sexual Healing"

Radiohead - "Paranoid Android"

M.I.A. - "Paper Planes"

The Animals - "We Gotta Get Out of this Place"

Dusty Springfield - "Son of a Preacher Man"

Screamin' Jay Hawkins - "I Put A Spell On You"

Cheap Trick - "Surrender"

Mott The Hoople - "All the Young Dudes"

Beach Boys - "Sloop John B"

Amy Winehouse - "Rehab"

New York Dolls - "Personality Crisis"

Modern Lovers - "Roadrunner"

George Jones - "He Stopped Loving Her Today"

Bruce Springsteen - "Born in the USA"

The Beatles - "With A Little Help From My Friends"

Rolling Stones - "Miss You"

The Coasters - "Run Red Run"

Elvis Costello - "Alison"

James Brown - "Hot (I Need to be loved loved loved)"

Inner Circle - "Tenement Yard"

Ray Charles - "I Don't Need No Doctor"

Curtis Mayfield - "Freddy's Dead"

Gang Starr - "Beyond Comprehension"

Bo Diddley - "Bo Diddley"

Aretha Franklin - "Rocksteady"

Creedence Clearwater Revival - "Have You Ever Seen the Rain'

Howlin' Wolf - "Smokestack Lightning"

Bobby Womack - "Across 110th Street"

Roy Orbison - "In Dreams"

Foggy Hogtown Boys - "Man of Constant Sorrow"

Pink Floyd - "Wish You Were Here"

Neil Young - "Cortez The Killer"

Bob Dylan - "Subterranean Homesick Blues"

Little Eva - "Loco-Motion"

Elvis Costello - "Watching the Detectives"

Jimmy Cliff - "The Harder They Come"

The Verve - "Bittersweet Symphony"

Roberta Flack - "Killing Me Softly with his Song"

R.E.M. - "Radio Free Europe"

Radiohead - "No Surprises"

Led Zeppelin - "Ramble On"

Rolling Stones - "Beast of Burden"

Glen Campbell - "Wichita Lineman"

posted by Alex Redekop at 10:11 AM
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