Johnny Van Zant:
I have not had the honor of meeting Johnny, but understand he is a really sincere and down to earth person. However, I did have the great pleasure of sitting with Johnny's wife Lisa at the concert at the Arizona State Fair this year. I will tell you she is as sweet as she is beautiful. So if you can tell anything about someone by their Spouse, then Johnny is top notch. I went to the show with my kids and a couple of friends. One of my friends was having trouble seeing due to someone in front of her. Lisa Van Zant and I believe it was Billy's daughter, gave my friend their seats, and then came sat by my daughter and myself. The one thing that really impressed me about Lisa was she was genuinely concerned with the audiences experience. She on a couple of occasions corrected the security guards for harassing fans (even though they were seat hoppers, people who buy the cheap seats then sneak down to the front). She spoke to us just like she was one of the crowd. It was very exciting to be sitting there, while Johnny would wave to her from the stage with his usual big smile. She was so pleasant I just could not bring myself to impose on her hospitality to ask to meet Johnny. For me it was just enough to sit (actually stand) and watch the unbelievable concert with her and Billy's daughter. She made me and my friends feel like we were VIP's. So if you read this Lisa or Johnny, Thank you so very much for a great experience and for being awesome folks. Also, would love an Email from you confirming or disputing it was indeed you I was sitting next to. firstname.lastname@example.org
Oh, one more thing I would like to share. There was a guy at the show sitting in the aisle next to us in a wheel chair. I swear, every classic Skynyrd song they played, that guy used all his might to get up out of that wheel chair, and not only stand, but dance. I think Lisa was about to cry, I know I was.
Since, I started this page I have had the great pleasure of sort of meeting Johnny. I drove the 9 hours to California to see the boys. I scored front row center seats. I guess Aunt Jane had let Johnny know I was going to be there. When the show started, I held up a sign that said, "Aunt Jane says Hi". Well, he just busted out laughing, pointed at me, and said "Bruce" with that trademark Johnny Van Zant grin. Well, he just treated us like VIPs through the whole show, coming over shaking my hand, pointing at me etc. When they started into Down South Jukin' he just grinned and pointed to me, then came over knelt down, shook my hand, and thanked me. Imagine, Johnny Van Zant thanking me. I was so stoked! Anyway, when the show was over, he came over again and thanked me again when I presented him with a gift from all the members of the site (an engraved silver whiskey flask with a little 190 proof affection inside). No words can describe how nice the band was to us that night. Almost every member came by to greet me and shake my hand or at least give me five, etc. So what can I say about Johnny? He treated me like a VIP or one of the family. Thanks Johnny for a night I will always remember. I can not express the gratitude, respect, or the love I have for your family.
Courage\ n : mental or moral strength to venture, persevere, and withstand
danger, fear, or difficulty
Courageous. A word that aptly describes Lynyrd Skynyrd front man, Johnny Van Zant. In spite of the doubts, fears, and expectations, Johnny exhibited great strength and tenacity when he took on the role once filled by his late brother, Ronnie.
As any younger sibling knows, it is difficult to walk in the shadow of a successful older brother or sister. However, Johnny overcame the obstacles and carved his own unique niche in the music industry.
"In the beginning, I was scared," Johnny admits. "But over the years, I've come to peace with it, and I think Ronnie's proud of what we're doing today."
Ronnie would also be proud of the man his little brother has become. Like Ronnie, Johnny has his priorities straight. Not only has he developed into a gifted vocalist and songwriter, but he is also a devoted father to his three beautiful daughters, Lindsay, Kristen, and Harmony.
~ Debbie Lee
Like I said I have not had the pleasure of meeting Johnny. But I have had the great pleasure of speaking with Jane. And again, if you can tell anything about a person by his family, then he is true blue and as sincere as his music. Jane Van Zant makes you feel like part of the family within 5 minutes of meeting her. I have heard Johnny is just as humble and hospitable. I have also been told by friends and acquaintances that he is very down ta earth and all about family. This seems to be a Van Zant family trait. Guess that is why I consider them the South's First family.
This short Bio was borrowed from "The Van Zants" web site. A more detailed bio is being compiled.