During this time, the band experienced some lineup changes for the first time. Junstrom left and was briefly replaced by Greg T. Walker on bass. At that time, Rickey Medlocke joined as a second drummer and occasional second vocalist to help fortify Burns' sound on the drums. Medlocke grew up with the founding members of Lynyrd Skynyrd and his grandfather Shorty Medlocke was an influence in the writing of "The Ballad of Curtis Loew". Some versions of the band's history state Burns briefly left the band during this time, although other versions state that Burns played with the band continuously through 1974. The band played some shows with both Burns and Medlocke, using a dual-drummer approach. In 1971, they made some recordings at the famous Muscle Shoals Sound Studio with Walker and Medlocke serving as the rhythm section, but without the participation of Burns. Medlocke and Walker left the band to play with another southern rock band, Blackfoot. When Lynyrd Skynyrd made a second round of Muscle Shoals recordings in 1972, Burns was once again featured on drums along with new bassist, Leon Wilkeson. Medlocke and Walker did not appear on any album until the 1978 release of First and. . . Last, which compiled the early Muscle Shoals sessions. Also in 1972, roadie Billy Powell became the band's keyboardist after Ronnie Van Zant heard him playing his rendition of Freebird.
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