Lynyrd Skynyrd and Limp Bizkit formed in Jacksonville—albeit decades apart—and became extremely successful in their own genres including appearances on RIAA's top 100 albums. On April 27 and 28, the iconic bands will return to their hometown to perform as part of Welcome to Rockville at Metropolitan Park. But that, dear readers, is not where the comparisons between the long-haired, good ol’ boys who introduced the world to Southern rock and the angry young men with tattoos who pioneered nü metal end.
In addition to the run-ins with the law, reports of drug and alcohol abuse, and breakup/reunion/breakups that go hand in hand with the business rock and roll, Lynyrd Skynyrd and Limp Bizkit have more than a few not so obvious similarities.
1. Both have been referenced in "Weird Al" Yankovic songs: Limp Bizkit in "Angry White Boy Polka" and Lynyrd Skynyrd in "Trapped in the Drive-Thru."
2. Each had a member involved in a public sex scandal. I'll let you Google those stories for yourselves. I don't need that kind of stuff showing up on my search history.
3. They've recorded songs that are long enough for a DJ to make a bathroom run and squeeze in a catnap—assuming, of course, radio stations still employed actual DJs who actually selected and played actual songs anymore. The original recording of "Freebird" clocked in at 9 minutes, 22 seconds, though, with live versions nearing 15 minutes; Limp Bizkit's "Everything" is even longer: 16 minutes, 26 seconds.
4. Both were part of tragic accidents during their heyday. A teenager was crushed to death at a Limp Bizkit concert in Australia in 2002. In 1977, a plane crash in a wooded area in Mississippi killed Ronnie Van Zant, Steve Gaines, Cassie Gaines and assistant road manager Dean Kilpatrick. Other band members and crew suffered serious injuries.
5. If name meanings are to be believed, Fred Durst and the late Ronnie Van Zant were destined to be lead singers: "Fred" (a diminutive of "Frederick") means "peaceful ruler," while "Ronnie" (a diminutive of "Ronald") means "counsel rule."
6. Both bands have less than flattering definitions on Urban Dictionary, which you are free to research on your own computers. Contributors have some particularly harsh words for Durst, most of which I shan't type here.
7. Van Zant grew up a New York Yankees fan; Fred Durst is rarely seen without a New York Yankees hat, usually worn backasswards.
8. On a Yahoo.com question board, SECRETDESTROYER named both Johnny Van Zant and Fred Durst as "Singers Who Can't Sing" (along with Britney Spears, Geddy Lee, Vince Neil and David Draiman).
9. And then there’s the fact that they’re terrible spellers.