Saturday Night Special

Album: Nuthin' Fancy (1975)
Charted: 27
  • A Saturday Night Special is a cheap handgun. When asked on a radio interview, Gary Rossington said that this song was inspired by a poker game that resulted in the shooting of one of the players. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Brendan - Milwaukee, WI
  • An acoustic version sung by Johnny Van Zant is featured on Lynyrd Skynyrd's 1994 album Endangered Species. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Aaron - Twin Cities, MN
  • "Saturday Night Special" isn't just a song to Lynryrd Skynyrd; they really did believe in their gun-play! So much so that bass player Leon Wilkeson actually took to wearing a holster and a real gun onstage - luckily the gun was only loaded with blanks. During their earlier tours when they were still an opening act, they were opening for Black Sabbath at Nassau Coliseum, Long Island. Black Sabbath fans apparently found this Southern band a little too mellow for their taste, and rushed the stage with taunts. When one fan got too close, Wilkeson drew his pistol and fired a blank over the heads of the crowd. Everybody immediately backed off and the show completed without further incident.
  • This song has also made appearances in the film The Longest Yard, the TV show Supernatural, and the video game Grand Theft Auto IV: The Lost and Damned.
  • For this song, drummer Bob Burns had to take a break from touring and Artimus Pyle was brought in to replace him. Pyle was given just a couple of days to rehearse the song in a rented Atlanta club before they hit the road again. Producer Al Kooper was rehearsing them, and became confused when the band began playing on the second beat of the second bar. When asked why, guitarist Ed King explained that it all worked out perfectly when they get to the guitar solo. So Kooper grew even more concerned, thinking that one of the subsequent bars had to be a beat short. The band eventually convinced Kooper that there was no need to conserve beats! This was a case of by-the-book Kooper vs. raw-talent Lynyrd Skynyrd - from which Kooper backed down.

Comments: 17

  • Mike from St. Louis, MoThe funny think is Ronnie Van Zant's brother Donnie is the lead singer for "38 Special."
  • Neil from Seattle, WaThose who are saying handguns can't be used for hunting obviously have little knowledge of the subject. Handguns come in a variety of sizes and powers, some of which are specifically for hunting. Many states have a specific hunting season for handguns. Additionally, the Second Amendment mentions nothing about hunting.
  • Oldpink from New Castle, InIt's a great song, alright.
    However, speaking as someone who knows guns very well, there are plenty of handgun calibers perfectly suitable for deer, and some even suitable for animals as large as Grizzly Bears.
    The .44 Magnum was originally conceived not as a caliber for humans, but one for deer and other big game instead.
  • John from Texas Where Else, TxONE OF THE GREATEST ROCK AND ROLL SONG OF ALL TIME. EASILY ONE OF THE TOP 5 ROCK AND ROLL SONGS OF ALL TIME. IMAGINE SEEING THEM AND "THE WHO" ON THE SAME NIGHT BACK IN THE 1970'S. JESUS WHAT A NIGHT THAT WOULD HAVE BEEN!!!
  • Myra from Chicago, IlAnd Big Jim done pull his pistol
    And shot his friend right between the eyes
    Handguns are made for killin'
    They ain't no good for nothin' else
    THIS SONG IS SIMPLY AWESOME!
    We do indeed have some major gun control issues.


  • Pytlak from Bakersfield, CaI thought the lyric was "somebody been cheatin' here tonight." Anyway, I think it cool for a Southern band to take a stand that is at odds with the way a lot of Southerners feel.

    Skynyrd rules!
  • Matthew from Milford, MaYeah, don't handguns lack the power to "drop" a deer or a bison?
  • Ryan H. Harris from Bellevue, NeSimply put handguns are made for killing and nothing else. You cant hunt with them.
  • Jordan from Menominee , MnLynyrd Skynyrd is the sh*t simply put
  • Dan from Worcester, MaAs a reward for writing this song, Ronnie Van Zant, (who was a marksman shooter), was banned from the NRA.
    Dan, Worcester MA
  • Johnny from Los Angeles, CaHow come this isn't in songs with count-in's?
  • Joseph from Wise, Vathe first time i listened to it i thought it said "Mr Saturday night so special" But i later looked it up to find i was wrong
  • Travis from Laconia, NhI like the lead singers accent. =)
  • Johnny from Los Angeles, CaI could not agree more, with all yall
  • Alison from Kill Devil Hills, NcI LOVE LYNYRD SKYNYRD!!!!they are the best of the best!!they rock!!!!this song kicks a$$!!

    god bless the van zant family!

    good ol southern rock!!
  • Stefanie Magura from Rock Hill, ScThe drum intro at the beginning of the song is pretty cool!
  • Jude from Thomasville, GaEvery single word in this song is absobloodylutely true! And they are sung by Southerners. Right on, Lynyrd Skynyrd!
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