Now there’s an idea!…NOT! Shit, most Parrotheads, if ask what songs they’d like to hear, would blow it!
I’ve travelled the land, and talked to more than my fair share of PH’s, and I haven’t met that many who really understand Jimmy’s music, or even delved that deeply into Jimmy’s music writing ability for that matter. They’re there for one main reason… The Party.
There, I’ve said it. Blasphemous? I think not. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying PH’s don’t love Buffett’s music. I’m just saying, most of the PH’s I have met wouldn’t list Jimmy’s Music as their Number One reason for becoming a PH. Is this wrong? “No.” I’m just stating a fact.
So, what am I trying to say? Well, after over 36 + years of being a Jimmy Buffett Fan and studying the PH Phenomenon, I can tell you if there’s one main reason Jimmy isn’t held in as high a regard musically as he should be, it would be his Parrothead Fans. People see us as Clowns. Is this a bad thing? “Again, “No.” It’s just the way it has evolved over the years. And quite frankly, Jimmy probably wouldn’t written and recorded as many great songs as he has if not for his Parrothead Following. They kept Jimmy going in the early 80′s when things weren’t going that good for Buffett. And I was right there with them. Except for the fact that, when I wasn’t at the yearly “World’s Biggest Tropical Party,” I constantly had my Walkman (with battery spares), Stereo, Tape Deck, or now, iPod on playing Buffett Tunes for at least 60% of the time. I’ve listened to “All” his music over and over again. And my favorites never matched most of my PH Peers.
I’ve talked to a lot of PH’s over the years, and there are a number of them that really do get Jimmy’s Music! They appreciate it. His music is the “Reason” they are Jimmy Buffett Fans or Parrotheads. And I bet if you asked any of them “What song they’d like to see someone perform on American Idol?” not one of them would name one of the Block of Eight Songs Jimmy has built his career on. You know the ones I’m talking about. Jimmy has even referred to these songs as “The Songs Parrotheads would kill me if I didn’t sing them.” Cheeseburger In Paradise, Fins, Son of a Son of a Sailor, A Pirate Looks at Forty, Margaritaville, Changes in Latitudes-Changes in Attitudes, Why Don’t We Get Drunk and Screw and Volcano.
So, what am I getting at? It would be a disaster if American Idol decided to dedicate a whole hour of Network exposure to Jimmy! But you say, wouldn’t it help his career? Hell, he doesn’t need any help! But, wouldn’t it honor him? Nay, Nay Wolfgang! Here’s what it would do: It would demean him! It would leave a legacy of music that has become cartoons in their own right. And he understands this. He has often referred to his concerts as a Carnival. And His recent song Big Top boils his concerts down to “A big time under the Big Top.” Jimmy understands what I’m trying to say. Is he ashamed of it? Hell No. He shouldn’t be. He’ll take any criticism of his shows all the way to the Bank!
So what are you really trying to say Jackson? Well, if none of those American Idol Finalist are going to sing Somewhere Over China, African Friend, Coast of Marseilles, Creola, First Look, One Particular Harbour, Island, When the Coast is Clear or Steamer…They might as well be singing “Math Suks” for all I care!
I just want Jimmy to be remembered for one of the really good songs he has given us. So please Simon…Don’t have a Jimmy Buffett Night!