Bob Burns is best known as the original drummer for the Southern rock band, Lynyrd Skynyrd (1964-1974), and playing drums on such hits “Sweet Home Alabama”, “Free Bird”, “Simple Man”, and “Gimme Three Steps”. Burns helped form Lynyrd Skynyrd in 1964 along with Ronnie Van Zant, Gary Rossington, Allen Collins, and Larry Junstrom. He remained with the band until 1974. Originally called The Noble Five and The One Percent, Burns suggested the band change their name to Lynyrd Skynyrd as a nod to their high school P.E. teacher Leonard Skinner. Skinner was known for strictly enforcing the school’s policy against boys having long hair. Bob Burns played on all of Lynyrd Skynyrd’s early demos, recorded in 1970, as well as songs recorded in 1972 on the album Skynyrd’s First and… Last. In the early 1970s, Rickey Medlocke occasionally played drums alongside Burns for a number of live shows; a two-drummer line-up similar to The Allman Brothers Band. Burns played drums on Skynyrd’s first two official albums: (Pronounced ‘Lĕh-‘nérd ‘Skin- ‘nérd) and Second Helping. He left in 1974 due to being overwhelmed by life on the road. In 1996, Burns participated in a performance to promote Freebird: The Movie. On March 13, 2006, he rejoined Lynyrd Skynyrd for one performance at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction as he played alongside Gary Rossington, Billy Powell, Ed King, Artimus Pyle, and the Honkettes.
Bob Burns was born on November 24, 1950 in Gainesville, Florida and died on April 3, 2015 in a single car crash in Cartersville, Georgia. He was 64 years old.