SOURCE: Warner Bros. Records

August 21, 2006 20:29 ET

Lynyrd Skynyrd and Big & Rich Team With KICKS 101.5 and EAGLE 106.7 to Help Raise Funds for 173rd Airborne Brigade National Memorial

Show at HiFi Buys Amphitheatre, in Atlanta, Georgia, Saturday, Oct. 7, 2006 With John Anderson, Cowboy Troy, The Lost Trailers and Others; Pre-Sale Wednesday, August 23 on Sale August 25 Through; Goal Is to Raise $500,000 in One Day "They Have Waited Long Enough"

NASHVILLE, TN -- (MARKET WIRE) -- August 21, 2006 -- Recent Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees Lynyrd Skynyrd and hot country duo Big & Rich will team up with KICKS 101.5 and the EAGLE 106.7 at the HiFi Buys Amphitheatre in Atlanta, Georgia on Saturday, October 7, 2006 at 6:00PM (doors at 4:00PM), for a fundraising concert that will include performances by John Anderson, Cowboy Troy, The Lost Trailers and others. All profits from the show will go to the building fund for the 173rd Airborne Brigade National Memorial. The memorial is to be built at the new National Infantry Museum campus in Ft. Benning, Georgia. The goal is to raise $500,000 in one day. Tickets are available through for pre-sale, Wednesday, August 23, 2006 at 10:00AM -- Thursday, August 24, 2006 at 10:00PM ET and to the general public, Friday, August 25, 2006 at 4:00PM ET. Prices range from $15 lawn tickets to $1000 VIP packages that include premium seating, an autographed guitar and a private event with the artists (tickets available for $15, $30, $45, $60, $150 & $1000).

"They have waited long enough," stated John Rich of Big & Rich. "We're just glad we are in a position to help these guys out," chimed in his partner Big Kenny. "These guys have put their lives on the line and over 1700 members of the 173rd have lost their lives serving this country. When we heard that they expected it to take 3 - 5 years of a capital fundraising campaign to build the memorial we decided we had to find a way to raise the money in one day. Then the guys in Skynyrd heard about it and we decided we'd jump in on their scheduled concert and now it's growing everyday. We look forward to an amazing show," continued Rich.

"Lynyrd Skynyrd is honored to be part of this event," said Johnny Van Zant of Lynyrd Skynyrd. "It's the least we can do to help build a memorial for the 173rd Airborne who have lost so many and helped protect this country. We look forward to sharing the stage with Big & Rich and playing for one of our favorite towns -- Atlanta, GA. It's been too long!"

Originally, October 7 was scheduled to be a Lynyrd Skynyrd show at the HiFi Buys Amphitheatre and Big & Rich were looking at October 8 for an event in Atlanta. When the legendary band heard about the proposed event they gave up their paid date to join forces with Big Kenny and Rich for what is turning into an amazing lineup.

"We thought raising funds for the memorial could take up to five years or more. Now, because we can make it happen in one night, many more Sky Soldiers will be able to see its dedication," said Terry Modglin, president of the 173rd Airborne Brigade National Memorial Foundation.

The memorial to the 173rd Airborne Brigade has been in discussion for the past two decades. Its design was recently approved and the location at the National Infantry Museum at Ft. Benning was chosen. It will feature a central circle with all the names of those from the brigade and allied forces who have lost their lives or are missing in action inscribed along with key brigade achievements. The centerpiece will include a column that rises above the memorial as a beacon topped by a steel sculpture of the wing and sword, central elements of the Brigade shoulder patch. Construction of the project is expected to take 12 to 18 months after funds are raised. With an estimated budget of $650,000 everyone involved was making plans for a long-term fundraising effort when Big Kenny and Rich stepped in.

"We knew we wanted to do something to help," said Marc Oswald, Big & Rich's manager. "So I picked up the phone and called Victor Sansone, who runs KICKS and the EAGLE down in Atlanta, and is a Vietnam veteran himself. He had already expressed to the guys and me that he felt like '8th of November' was an important song. So I knew he was the right guy to talk to and in the right place to do a show. It was a short conversation. I barely got the idea out before he said 'I'm in. Just tell me what we need to do.'"

"Marc had me at hello," said Sansone, president and general manager, WKHX and WYAY Atlanta. "This was honestly an easy decision for our staff and a natural extension to the commitment that Big & Rich have made in bringing closure to Niles Harris. The timely tribute that we are able to give to the 173rd in its entirety, is flawed only by the five-year timetable they originally anticipated. It's heartwarming that everyone in this loop from HiFi Buys to radio to Lynyrd Skynyrd, John Anderson and The Lost Trailers...simply everyone's immediate reaction is 'Let's get it done...NOW.' And we will."

Ranked as one of the best-selling artists of all time by the Recording Industry Association of America and recent Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Inductees, Lynyrd Skynyrd is still going strong with almost 65 albums recorded, 26 million sold to date, and over 80 performances annually. The band is currently writing the follow-up to "Vicious Cycle," the band's May 2003 release on Sanctuary Records that spawned the single "Red White and Blue," which was the band's strongest in over 25 years. To date, the Southern anthem "Sweet Home Alabama" has passed the 1,000,000 mark in downloaded master ringtones, proving that Lynyrd Skynyrd is a major industry icon that appeals to all generations.

Big & Rich spent the second half of this year touring coast to coast on the "Prilosec OTC Coming To Your City Tour" and promoting the third single from "Comin' To Your City," "The 8th of November." The song tells the story of Purple Heart veteran and member of the 173rd Airborne Brigade, Niles Harris, who, as a 19-year-old army private, was shot in a jungle fire fight during the Vietnam War on November 8, 1965. In 2002, Big Kenny and Rich befriended Harris when they visited his hometown of Deadwood, South Dakota. The friendship has continued and Big Kenny and Rich wrote "The 8th of November" to honor his legacy. Last year the duo accompanied Harris on a trip to Vietnam to try to make sense of the battle that took his comrades' lives on that fall day in 1965. A documentary of the experience began airing in July. Prilosec OTC is distributing over a million copies of the documentary through a special on-pack offer available to consumers at select retailers.

Also joining the bill will be Cowboy Troy, recent co-host of the 4th season of "Nashville Star" and member of the MuzikMafia, country music icon John Anderson who has just released his first single in over six years to radio from his new album, "Easy Money" (in stores November 7 and produced by John Rich) and The Lost Trailers.

The 173rd Airborne Brigade was created on Okinawa in 1963 as the quick-response "fire brigade" for the Asian-Pacific area. It was the first regular combat unit in Vietnam, arriving May 5, 1965. Its six years of continuous combat service in Vietnam is a record unequalled since the American Revolution. The brigade's historic combat jump in Operation Junction City was the only combat parachute assault of that war. Its 13 Medal of Honor recipients, 42 Distinguished Service Cross awardees, and scores and scores of Silver Star, Bronze Star, and Unit Citations mark a proud combat record in Vietnam. The brigade was disbanded in 1972 and reactivated in 2000 in Vincenza, Italy to serve as the "fire brigade" for Southern Europe, North Africa, and the Middle East. The reactivated brigade made the only combat jump of Operation Iraqi Freedom and has served a year in Iraq and a year in Afghanistan with distinction.

"Sky Soldiers everywhere are deeply grateful. This is a great night for a great cause. This concert benefits the 173rd Memorial but it honors everyone who has ever answered our nation's call," said Modglin.

In addition to the concert, other daytime activities are planned that will be announced soon.

Information on the show can also be found at:

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