One of the most iconic venues in all of rock history was the Winterland Ballroom in San Francisco, California. Over the years many legendary artists passed through those doors and put on shows that left the audience begging for more.
One such group was Lynyrd Skynyrd, who performed at the venue in 1975 and again in 1976. Their 1976 concert took place just a little over a month after the release of their fourth studio album, Gimme Back My Bullets. Because of this, Skynyrd's setlist for the concert was filled with songs from the new album, including the smooth tune "Searching."
Written by guitarist Allen Collins and lead singer Ronnie Van Zant, "Searching" was never released as a single from the album, but it became a quick fan favorite anyway.
The song tells the story of a young man who asks an old wise man to help him find some happiness in life. Although the young man has lots of money, the wise man tells him what he really needs to be happy is someone to love. So the young man takes his advice and goes off on a quest to find a love, as he sings:
"He sent me searchin' to find my love
He sent me searchin', I said Lord up above
He sent me searchin' just to find the mornin' dove
And she'll tell you where to find your love."
Compared to some of Skynyrd's other songs, "Searching" doesn't contain many huge moments where it's only the instruments playing. Instead, Ronnie controls the direction of most of the song, and because of that his talent poured through in his Winterland performance of the song.
Once Ronnie stopped singing the last chorus, that's when the rest of the band jumped in with a powerful instrumental break, with guitarist Gary Rossington standing out in a brilliant solo moment. But Ronnie wasn't finished quite yet. He jumped in to sing one final line, and that one soulful line was enough to make the crowd go absolutely wild.
You can check out the performance in the video below. It's moments like these that prove why Skynyrd has earned their status as the kings of Southern rock!
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