Song 643: This week the playlist recognizes Free Bird by Lynyrd Skynyrd, written by Allen Collins and Ronnie Van Zant, and you can find a YouTube video of it by clicking on the title. When this anthem started riding the air waves in the winter of 1975, I had just found an available room in an apartment on the south end of the Chicago-area locality where I had spent most of the preceding 4 years, so I personally did not feel like the Free Bird that had relaxed in the Atlanta, GA, region the previous spring, but I did appreciate having a warm space to rest. As much as I initially enjoyed listening to the signature song of this septet, which marks their premier appearance among this collection, I would eventually, over the next decade, get tired of hearing other performers do their own versions of it. By the time the 1980s arrived, whenever I attended a night club show, whether by a low-level musician or a prominent star, if the singer gave the audience a chance to make a request, I always heard at least one person - and often many more - shout out Free Bird, to the point where it became rare NOT to hear that. This phenomenon continued well into the 1990s, and may even still happen these days, because, after all, this bird you cannot change.