My First Jimmy Buffet Concert

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I went to my very first Jimmy Buffet concert Saturday night in Birmingham, Alabama. I am not sure what I expected but it was certainly an unusual event…half concert, half party and 100% fun!

Fans waited more than a decade for a live performance of “Margaritaville,” “A Pirate Looks at Forty,” “Come Monday,” “Fins,” “Cheeseburger in Paradise” and his other signature songs. Buffett, now 65, and his 12-member band, the Coral Reefers, hadn’t played in Birmingham since November 2001.

The arena was packed with about 14,000 fans or more aptly named “parrot heads” many of them decked out in parrot head hats, shark-fin visors, Hawaiian shirts, grass skirts and other tropical garb. Ideal for people-watching especially a first timer to a Buffet concert. I was certainly underdressed.
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Buffett set a congenial tone at when he strolled on stage to introduce the opening act decked out barefooted in a T-shirt and swimming trunks. “Sweet home Alabama!” he proclaimed. he was clearly excited and ready to celebrate his strong ties to the state. He went to Catholic School in Mobile and actually one of my old professors at Spring Hill College there taught him to play…ironically a Jesuit priest.

He recalled his past in Mobile, inserted Birmingham into various song lyrics, praised the state’s football champs (including my alma mater, Auburn) and generally acted like a proud homeboy. Photos of Alabama were part of the stage design, displayed on a huge screen behind the performers.

Even his playlist, nearly 30 numbers strong, clearly was made for the occasion. It included “Bama Breeze,” “Pascagoula Run,” “Back Where I Come From,” “Stars Fell on Alabama,” “Sweet Home Alabama,” “Birmingham” and “Southern Cross.”

Buffett delivered familiar song introductions with a wink and a grin. That upped the audience’s excitement, as listeners anticipated the first notes of “Jamaica Mistaica,” “Volcano” or “Son of a Son of a Sailor.”

He is no Sinatra but he sounded just like I remembered back in his hey day. Today I have a renewed appreciation for Jimmy Buffet and his crazy fans.

McCartney

McCartney will play in concert tonight one minute walk from my temporary digs in Atlanta. My client gave me a ticket and I am so pleased to go.
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I last saw him with the Beatles in 1965 on August 18th when my dad against all odds got the wild idea to get us tickets and drive 5 hours (no Interstate highway in those days) to get us to the show also in Atlanta. A real tribute to him as most parents in those days frowned on the Fab Four.
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This is the 40th anniversary of so many great things, Woodstock, the Moon walk and so on…so in keeping with the celebration (although this is the 44th anniversary to see Paul) I will walk the 20 meters to the concert!

Here is the set list a great mix of Beatles, solo and Wings hits…I will write more after the show.
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Talk about inflation!!! The ticket was $5.50, I saw District 9 last night for $10.50. This ticket was $84.50.

Pictures From Africa Mission Concert in Yokohama

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The concert was a huge success and all the photos from the show are on the link below.
http://ent2.excite.co.jp/music/africamission2008/livereport.html?no=65#main_top

Avril Lavigne In China

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Avril is so popular in China…I think she must represent some type of rebellion…she certainly defines a new type of style and fashion there for the young women in Shanghai and Beijing. Her images have more than 38 million downloads on mobile and her videos more than 25 million streamed on PC.

After the Olympics she will perform 6 shows in three cities…I am working on the promotion off the shows now.

Backstage at Africa Mission Concert

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Blendz Hip Hop band from Japan and Jett Edwards work out a rap and harmony before the show.

I shot this with my mobile phone sorry about the quality…ha lack of quality. Also working out arrangement with Junior the keyboard player before the show.

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Africa Mission dance

Production Notes, Africa Mission 2008

Here is the stage layout for the Pacifico Arena in Yokohama…show starts in 6 days…phew cutting it close..I.will video tape rehearsals this Monday and post them.
Africa Mission Stage
Dr. Kanbe Shunpei organizer of the Peace Boat (http://www.peaceboat.org) and pioneer in disease control in Africa will give the opening speech at the concert…I realized he plays a traditional African finger piano so I have asked him to join the African musicians for the opening song.
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