Lynyrd Skynyrd is getting back on the road. The iconic Southern Rock group just announced their Big Wheels Keep On Turnin’ Tour, kicking off on June 13 in Forest City, Iowa. The tour marks Lynyrd Skynyrd’s first return to the road, after their highly-anticipated Last of the Street Survivors Farewell Tour was cut short in 2020, due to the pandemic.
“We were two shows into the end of the three-year plan for the farewell tour, when the virus hit and everything was just gone,” Johnny Van Zant recalls. “Once something is taken away from you – music and touring in our case – you truly realize how important it is and such a part of your life. Music is a great healer, and that’s what we all turn to when things are good or bad. A Skynyrd show is a family affair, and we want these dates to help heal our fans as much as ourselves.”
“COVID turned our world upside down,” original band member Gary Rossington adds. “And since that time, we have been talking amongst the band, and realized that music has such a way of healing. Maybe it’s not our time to go. And maybe it’s our time to lift people’s spirits and lives and bring back some joy and happiness after so much turmoil this past year. We’re still standing, still keeping the music going.”
The Big Wheels Keep On Turnin’ Tour comes after Lynyrd Skynyrd marked their first return to live performances in more than 15 months, with their headlining show at the opening night of Pepsi Gulf Coast Jam in Panama City Beach.
“Pepsi Gulf Coast Jam represented what’s in the air, what the fans want and what we have to offer,” Van Zant says of their energetic show. “We’re back, we’re playing shows, and we’re going to finish what the heck we started. We miss the people singing the songs and having a good time, and that’s what Skynyrd is all about.”
For a group that began more than 55 years ago, touring is no longer necessary to keep their loyal fans — but it is imperative for the band members.
“Being locked down brought a big perspective of how much I missed the band and the fans and not to ever take it for granted,” Ricky Medlocke acknowledges. “Merle Haggard was once asked, ‘Why do you do this? You don’t need to do this.’ He said, ‘I’m a musician, this is what I do – I play.’ That’s what we are. We’re musicians. We play. No matter what comes around, we love to be out playing for the fans. Once the band hits the stage, I hope everybody will forget about last year for a little while.”
TESLA will serve as direct support for a majority of the Big Wheels Keep On Turnin’ Tour dates, with Kansas, Joan Jett and the Blackhearts, Blackberry Smoke, Allman Betts Band, and The Marshall Tucker Band alternating as the opening act on other dates.
Fan presale for select shows begins on Wednesday, June 9 at 10:00 AM local time by visiting their website and using the special code SKYNYRDBIGWHEELS. See a complete list of dates below.
Big Wheels Keep On Turnin’ Tour Dates:
13 Forest City, IA Country Thunder Iowa
18 Ft. Worth, TX Billy Bob’s Texas
19 Ft. Worth, TX Billy Bob’s Texas
22 Shakopee, MN Twin Cities Summer Jam
23 Minot, ND North Dakota State Fair
9 Canton, OH Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium
10 Jackson, MI Jackson County Fair
13 Atlanta, GA* Cellairis Amphitheatre at Lakewood
14 Cullman, AL Rock The South
19 Canandaigua, NY* CMAC
20 Bethel, NY* Bethel Woods Center for the Arts
22 Wildwood, NJ Barefoot Country Music Festival
27 Holmdel, NJ* PNC Bank Arts Center
28 Saratoga Springs, NY* Saratoga Performing Arts Center
3 Paducah, KY Touchdowns and Tunes Tailgate Party
4 Durant, OK Choctaw Grand Theater
17 Selbyville, DE Freeman Arts Pavilion
18 Doswell, VA After Hours Concerts at the Meadow Event Park
23 Mansfield, MA* Xfinity Center
27 Morrison, CO Red Rocks Amphitheater
1 Irvine, CA* FivePoint Amphitheater
2 Laughlin, NV Laughlin Event Center
8 Noblesville, IN* Ruoff Music Center
9 Cincinnati, OH* Riverbend Music Center
5 Knoxville, TN* Thompson Boling Arena
6 Charleston, WV* Charleston Coliseum
13 Greensboro, NC* Greensboro Coliseum
14 Daytona Beach, FL Welcome to Rockville
19 Bossier City, LA* Brookshire Grocery Arena