Artimus Pyle, Former Lynyrd Skynyrd Recalls That Horrible Day

Artimus Pyle, the former drummer for Lynyrd Skynyrd, stopped by to discuss his time with the band as well as his current group. Howard told Artimus – who survived the plane crash that took the life of Ronnie and Steven Van Zant, among others – that dying in such a way was not the way he would want to go, and Artimus replied that, not only was he in a plane crash, but that his father and his father-in-law died in separate plane crashes as well. Artimus added he was hesitant to fly after the crash he was in, but that he no longer has a fear of flying. Artimus then remembered he was playing Pong on the plane just prior to the crash, and that the band had auditioned 30 pilots to fly their private plane for that trip. Artimus went on to say the pilots that day were responsible for not checking just how little gas their plane had on board – which was the cause of the crash – but that he didn't blame them seeing as they "paid the ultimate price" for their error: their lives. Artimus again acknowledged he figured the plane "could've made it" had the pilots looked to see if it had enough fuel, adding they were only 60 miles from their destination in Baton Rouge when it went down. Artimus then reported he never lost consciousness during the ordeal, and that he and his band mates were quietly praying to themselves as the plane went down. Artimus proceeded to say Ronnie shook his hand as the plane was going down, and that he took the role of stewardess advising everyone on the plane to conserve all the energy possible so that the pilots could use it in an attempt to land. Artimus then acknowledged he wouldn't have put the plane's landing gear down as the pilots had, seeing as they were attempting to land in a field, but that he wasn't sure not doing so would've made a difference either. Artimus also reported there were 26 people aboard the plane, and that six of them "died on impact." Artimus then said Ronnie was killed by "a single blow to the head" by a piece of music equipment, which Artie thought was ironic.

In Tribute to Ronnie

Artimus said he was a member of the "original" Lynyrd Skynyrd, and that he thought Ronnie Van Zant would've had the same success no matter who was in the band with him. Given this, Artimus explained that he quit the band following the crash, and could've rejoined the group had he wanted to, but that he never did because he considered it to have been Ronnie's band. Artimus proceeded to admit he faced child molestation charges years ago, explaining the charges were unfounded but he ran out of money defending himself and ended up spending some time in jail over it. However, he insisted he wasn't disallowed from being back in Lynyrd Skynyrd as a result of his troubles.

From Crashes to Fun Shots

Artimus recalled that, once he knew he wasn't badly injured in the plane crash, he went for help, walking through "black water" and encountering snakes on his way. Artimus then said he eventually saw land with cows on it, and, because his legs were hurt, he had to "roll over" the barbed-wire fence protecting the land. Artimus added he approached the farm covered in blood, and that he was shot in the left shoulder by the 19-year-old son of the farm's owner, largely because of his appearance. Artimus went on to say the shot was so powerful it "spun him around," and that the shooter realized his mistake as soon as he yelled "plane crash" as he fell to the ground.

Anger In the Music

Howard brought up that Artimus had a new album, "Artimus Venomous," and played a song from it called "Bloodsucking Weasel Attorneys." However, before he did, Artimus explained he knew there were "good attorneys out there," but that the song focused on the lawyers who "drained" him during his child-abuse trial