In a new interview with John Beaudin of Rock History Music, Outlaws lead singer Henry Paul revealed how Ronnie Van Zant needed a songwriting partner after Ed King left Lynyrd Skynyrd in 1975. “When Ed King left, Ronnie realized he needed a songwriting partner.” Someone to give the band the kind of life it had with Ed in the beginning. As a songwriter and a player, Ed added a very substantial voice to Lynyrd Skynyrd.” He also stressed the significance of Gary Rossington to the Lynyrd Skynyrd sound: When Outlaws opened for Lynyrd Skynyrd in 1974, Van Zant assisted the band in landing a record deal by introducing them to a record executive, as Paul recalled:
“The Outlaws owe their career to Ronnie in large part because of the way he promoted our group early on.” As a result, he occupies a unique position in my life.” ‘Sweet Home Alabama,’ ‘Poison Whiskey,’ ‘Saturday Night Special,’ ‘Whiskey Rock-a-Roller,’ and other Lynyrd Skynyrd songs were written by Ed King and Ronnie Van Zant. Allen Collins, Gary Rossington, and Steve Gaines assisted Van Zant in the songwriting process after he left. The complete conversation with Henry Paul can be viewed below.