Best known for fronting Lynyrd Skynyrd, Johnny Van Zant has also enjoyed an illustrious solo career, in addition to working with his brother Donnie in the group Van Zant. The youngest brother of Lynyrd Skynyrd founder Ronnie Van Zant, he was 15 when he first started performing with the Austin Nickels Band, mainly playing local bars before changing their name to the Johnny Van Zant Band, releasing their first album No More Dirty Deals in 1980. By then, his brother Ronnie had already died in a plane crash along with other key members of Lynyrd Skynyrd and No More Dirty Deals included Johnny's tribute to Ronnie, Standing In The Darkness. He recorded two more albums with the Polydor label - Round Two (1981) and Last Of The Wild Ones (1982) - before being signed to the Geffen label, which released his successful Van Zant album (1985). As his highly charged brand of Southern Rock fell out of fashion, he disappeared for several years, working as a truck driver, but returned to active musical service to take the place of his late brother as lead singer with a revived version of Lynyrd Skynyrd. His energetic performances instantly renewed their popularity and in 1990 he made another solo album Brickyard Road, with the title track becoming a big radio hit in America. By the late 1990s he was working in the duo Van Zant with his brother Donnie (previously with .39 Special), pursuing more of a country music style and releasing a couple of albums which produced the hit Help Somebody. A fan of Jacksonville Jaguars American football team, his music continues to be played at home matches and, despite medical problems in 2011, he continued to perform both with Van Zant and Lynyrd Skynyrd.