Lynyrd Skynyrd: Steve Gaines (vocals, guitar); Ronnie Van Zant (vocals); Ed King (electric & slide guitars, bass); Gary Rossington (electric & slide guitars); Allen Collins (electric guitar); Billy Powell (piano, keyboards); Leon Wilkeson (bass, background vocals); Greg Walker (bass); Ricky Medlocke (drums, background vocals); Artimus Pyle, Bob Burns (drums).
Additional personnel: Bobby Keyes, Trevor Lawrence, Steve Madiao (horns); Al Kooper (piano, organ, Moog synthesizer, background vocals); Tim Smith, Clydie King, Merry Clayton, Cassie Gaines, Jo Billingsley, Leslie Hawkins (background vocals).
Producers: Al Kooper, Tom Dowd, Lynryd Skynyrd, Tim Smith, Jimmy R. Johnson.
Compilation producer: Ron O'Brien.
Recorded between 1973 & 1978. Includes liner notes by Ron O'Brien.
Digitally remastered by Doug Schwartz.
Audio Remasterer: Doug Schwartz.
Liner Note Author: Ron O'Brien.
Photographer: Ron O'Brien.
Whether you take the title ALL TIME GREATEST HITS literally or not, it's hard to dispute that, give or take a couple of Allman Brothers albums, this is pretty much the high-water mark for '70s Southern rock. All the group's crowd pleasers are included, and, as always, it's hard not to be impressed both by their three-guitar-army attack and by the range of the late Ronnie Van Zant's songwriting.
Along with de rigeur cautionary anti-drug songs and tales of groupie encounters such as "That Smell" and "What's Your Name" respectively, Van Zant also deals with regional pride and arrogant pop stars in "Sweet Home Alabama," and gun control in the extremely-gutsy-for-the-time "Saturday Night Special." Motherhood is also embraced, in the even gutsier "Simple Man." The album includes Skynyrd's joyous cover of J. J. Cale's "Call Me the Breeze," plus of course the Southern rock anthem "Free Bird." All in all there's not a dud in the bunch.