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Ean Evans of Lynyrd Skynyrd: A Memorial; Frynds Remember the "Mississippi Kid"

Wayne “Ean” Evans, bassist for Lynyrd Skynyrd, has died after a hard fought battle with cancer. He was 48.

Evans was diagnosed in late 2008, and after receiving conventional medical treatments, he began working with doctors on some alternative medical options, but the cancer was too aggressive, and he died on May 6, 2009.

This was the second death in the Lynyrd Skynyrd band this year. Keyboardist Billy Powell died on January 28th.

The Atlanta, Georgia native and Mississippi resident started playing music at the age of 5, playing trumpet, but switched to guitar in his early teens, playing in various cover bands throughout the southeast. He later formed a band called Cupid’s Arrow that became very well liked in Georgia and the surrounding states, before he was called upon by Hughie Thomasson to join The Outlaws. When Hughie was asked to join Lynyrd Skynyrd, The Outlaws were put on hold, and when Leon Wilkeson passed away in 2001, Hughie suggested Ean as a replacement.

Besides Skynyrd, Ean was in a side project called Evanscapps with keyboardist Bobby Capps of 38 Special. The band’s CD, Last Time, is set to be released next week (May 12th).

Ean also appears on the new Lynyrd Skynyrd album Loud & Proud, due out this summer.

The Mississippi Kid Festival, took place on Sunday, April 19th in Columbus, Mississippi, with many from the world of music embracing the opportunity to perform and help raise money to benefit Evans and his family.  Included on the roster for the  show were members of .38 Special, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Bo Bice, Blackberry Smoke, members of  Marshall Tucker Band, Crossin Dixon, members of 3 Doors Down, members of Molly Hatchet the Dirt Brothers, and others. Thousands of fans showed their support for Evans through rain and mud at the outdoor event.

Evans is survived by his wife Eva and two daughters, Sydney and Andrea.

We at GRITZ and Swampland are deeply saddened. Another Free Bird has gone home.

- Michael Buffalo Smith

“It is with profound sadness that we announce the passing of longtime Lynyrd Skynyrd bassist Ean Evans. Ean put up a valiant battle with an aggressive form of cancer and he will be sorely missed by family, friends and fans.”

- Statement from Lynyrd Skynyrd

“I am deeply saddened to confirm rumors that my friend and brother Ean is now resting in heaven with his maker. He will be missed by family, friends and fans.

Anyone who knew Ean on a personal level, knew him for his humble approach and genuine southern mannerisms. He was, and always will be, known on a professional level as, not only a great bass player but, a great guitar player, singer, songwriter, and producer.

We did a great thing together with this new CD and I intend to keep his spirit alive by preaching his music for a long time to come. Please keep his family in your thoughts and prayers. RIP Ean!! I love you brother!”

-Bobby Capps (38 Special, Evanscapps)

“Ean was a great guy and consummate musician who fit the legend of Lynyrd Skynrd like a glove.  He never seemed like a new guy. That band doesn't have new guys. Just souls that were meant to be.  God Bless you Ean. Go fly high.”
- Billy Bob Thornton, aka: “Bud,” The Boxmasters

“He was truly inspiring to me. Ean always had a great smile. He will surely be missed.”

-Doug Gray, The Marshall Tucker Band





Lynyrd Skynyrd's Rick Medlocke, Gary Rossington and Ean.



Evanscapps: Ean and Bobby.


Rest in Peace, brother Ean.


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