Saturday, September 9, 2023

Bubbles Up! RIP Jimmy Buffett

A week ago today I received the sad news that Jimmy Buffett had passed away peacefully on the night of September 1st surrounded by his family, friends. Reading the tributes to him this week has been heart warming and inspiring. I read a post on Facebook that said "Wouldn't you know that Jimmy would go out in pure Jimmy Buffett style at the beginning of the the long Labor Day weekend?"

I don't remember exactly what day it was this week that I was out on my patio watering my plates, cutting back dead leaves and talking on the phone to Christian. I looked up and there was a bright yellow parrot flying around in front of my patio and landed in the tree and sat there for a while. I came back inside and then thought to myself "That was a yellow parrot! OMG was that Jimmy's spirit making his rounds, telling everyone goodbye?

Synchronicities always call my attention to what I am doing in the moment and gives greater meaning to life. On Sunday, September 3, I was preparing food for Adriane's birthday party. I was reminiscing about that hot day in 1977, at the end of the summer, September 3rd. It was 5 days past my due date. What were the chances that I would go into labor on the Labor Day weekend? So on Sunday, as I was preparing food, listening to Spotify, Jimmy Buffett's song "Come Monday" randomly started playing. I was floored since Jimmy passed away just 2 days prior. I have heard that song a million times since its release in 1974, the year my brother, Phillip became Jimmy's drummer. I mindlessly sang along with the song for over 40 years. On Sunday it had a whole new meaning. Still in shock that Jimmy passed away, I heard the lyrics in a whole new light. The song was written on the Labor Day weekend, 3 years before Adriane was born. There I was cooking and I singing along:

Headin' out to San Francisco
For the Labor Day weekend show
I got my Hush Puppies on
I guess I never was meant for glitter rock 'n' roll
And honey,
I didn't know that I'd be missin' you so
Come Monday, it'll be alright
Come Monday, I'll be holdin' you tight
I love the way the Universe gives us gentle little nudges as reminders that we do in fact carry on and remain. I love my life.

Jimmy Buffett

Jimmy built an amazingly successful career with his stellar upbeat, colorful live performances with a devoted fan base of "Parrotheads" equal to the "Grateful Dead's" fan base of "Dead Heads." The nickname originated at a 1985 concert. What does it mean to be a "Parrothead?" It means you are probably a baby boomer, a fan of Jimmy Buffett's music and the laid-back, beachy lifestyle he promoted.He became a billionaire because he recognized something big was happening amongst his fans before, during and after his shows and capitalized on it. Women with coconut bras and men with parrot hats and Hawaiian shirts. He capitalized on it by building a lifestyle brand around the attitude his artistry encompassed. It was genius!

In 1975, Jimmy formed the first Coral Reefer Band. My brother, Phillip was the drummer in that band. This is a video of the first Coral Reefer Band that year.

Jimmy Buffet and the Coral Reefer Band

My favorite part of this video is at the beginning when Jimmy gets off of the bus and tries to kiss my brother, Phillip. RIP Jimmy.

Jimmy Buffett in Austin 1975

The band was the opening act for the Eagles in August of 1975. The album "Havana Daydreamin'" was released in January 1976. My brother played drums on that album.

In January 1977, "Changes in Latitudes, Changes in Attitudes" was released. It featured his breakthrough hit song "Margaritaville" Jimmy said he wrote most of the song in six minutes.

Jimmy opened his first successful "Margaritaville" retail store in Key West, Florida in 1985. There are now restaurants, vacation clubs, hotels, casinos, restaurant chain, casinos, liquor, a musical and retirement communities with the "Margaritaville" brand. I'm pretty sure I would love living at a "Latitude Margaritaville" retirement community.

Jimmy was one of the world's richest musicians, with a net worth of about $1 billion. He was also a bestselling author. Over and above his ability to spread the love and show his gratitude, he cared about the environment. He donated funds and time to "Singing for Change," "The Manatee Club," "Last Mango Boatworks" and more. Jimmy Buffett was a true artist, inspiring millions to sing, dance, and take it easy. 

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