Archive for January, 2013

If it’s Snowbird Season….

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It has been a real quiet week for us since we got back from New Orleans. Both Sunshine Cindy and I have been fighting colds so we felt it best not to get out and about. It was disappointing too because some of our friends were at KC’s Sandbar Wednesday. Oh well, maybe next time.

As those of you who have been reading this blog regularly know, I have been reporting Margaritaville is close to being officially announced as a new tenant at Harborwalk Village. I keep hearing they are close to finalizing everything and getting the old Lucky Snapper building remodeled or rebuilt. Well, my sources have told me they did sign the contract last week. If my guess is right, Jimmy himself might announce it next week while he is in Pensacola for a concert. We shall see but it looks like this is going to happen for real finally!

My source also told me the Coyote Ugly chain has also signed a contract to rent space at Harborwalk. I don’t know where but with the building that used to house The Shedd empty, that might be the spot. Yep, it looks like Sunshine Cindy might have another bar to dance on pretty soon! 

The invasion of snowbirds is officially on. We are now in the season where people drive slow in the left lane with their seatbelt dragging and their turn signal forever on. As Brent Burns says about this time of the year, “If a car from Michigan passes you. It’s stolen.” Actually we have met some wonderful snowbirds over the years. Alan and Jackie come to mind right off the bat. So it’s hard to get too worked up over them since spring breakers are right around the corner!

Have a great weekend. See ya Monday!

Article source: http://destinsteve.blogspot.com/2013/01/if-its-snowbird-season.html

I’m in a Ukulele State of Mind

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I’m in a Ukulele State of Mind

I’m in a Ukulele state of mind. That’s right. The Ukulele puts a smile on my face and relaxes me when I am stressed out. I cannot hold a negative thought in my mind while I am playing the Ukulele.

Whether with the Parrot Island Band (a Trop rock Jimmy Buffett tribute band in Atlanta, Georgia), or playing by myself… the Ukulele has become a source of relaxation and joy. While noodling  (a technical term meaning “just messing around”) on my Ukulele last week, I wrote this song I’m in a Ukulele State of Mind:

 

 

 

I’m in a Ukulele State of Mind

Chorus)

My ukulele puts a smile on my face

My ukulele takes me to a good place

I’m feeling better all the time

I’m in a ukulele state of mind

No matter what I’m going through

I know just where to turn yes I do

Everything is better all my skies are blue

What could a ukulele do for you?

Chorus)

My ukulele puts a smile on my face

My ukulele takes me to a good place

I’m feeling better all the time

I’m in a ukulele state of mind

When it’s hard for me to smile… sometimes,

I try to change my thoughts this is what I find

My ukulele it never fails me

It puts me back on island time

Chorus)

My ukulele puts a smile on my face

My ukulele takes me to a good place

I’m feeling better all the time

I’m in a ukulele state of mind

Bridge

I close my eyes and take it in

Hear the sound of peace feel the joy within

Chorus)

My ukulele puts a smile on my face

My ukulele takes me to a good place

I’m feeling better all the time

I’m in a ukulele state of mind

A “Ukulele state of mind” is a great place to be. For me it is a place of beaches, palm trees and smiling faces.  Feeling stressed or worn out? Maybe you should pick up a Ukulele and strum yourself to a happy place… I’ll be there waiting with my Uke…

Beaches and blessings,

Bry

Article source: http://www.parrotislandband.com/2013/01/22/im-in-a-ukulele-state-of-mind/

Margaritaville rumored for Syracuse NY

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From Syracuse.com: “Syracuse’s Destiny USA adds more stores, entertainment and a Jimmy Buffett rumor

Oh, and here’s another hot one for you: Destiny execs are mum on this, but there’s talk Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville Restaurant may be joining the lineup. Some in the mall’s circles are saying Aja, the nightclub planned for the expansion, will be sacrificed for Margaritaville, but Destiny execs say Aja is still on its short list of coming attractions. They wouldn’t confirm a Buffett beach party is on the horizon.

written by admin

Article source: http://www.buffettnews.com/2013/01/22/13409/

Margaritaville rumored for Syracuse NY

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From Syracuse.com: “Syracuse’s Destiny USA adds more stores, entertainment and a Jimmy Buffett rumor

Oh, and here’s another hot one for you: Destiny execs are mum on this, but there’s talk Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville Restaurant may be joining the lineup. Some in the mall’s circles are saying Aja, the nightclub planned for the expansion, will be sacrificed for Margaritaville, but Destiny execs say Aja is still on its short list of coming attractions. They wouldn’t confirm a Buffett beach party is on the horizon.

written by admin

Article source: http://www.buffettnews.com/2013/01/22/13409/

Margaritaville rumored for Syracuse NY

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From Syracuse.com: “Syracuse’s Destiny USA adds more stores, entertainment and a Jimmy Buffett rumor

Oh, and here’s another hot one for you: Destiny execs are mum on this, but there’s talk Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville Restaurant may be joining the lineup. Some in the mall’s circles are saying Aja, the nightclub planned for the expansion, will be sacrificed for Margaritaville, but Destiny execs say Aja is still on its short list of coming attractions. They wouldn’t confirm a Buffett beach party is on the horizon.

written by admin

Article source: http://www.buffettnews.com/2013/01/22/13409/

Pardi Gras fun in New Orleans

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We are back home from our trip to New Orleans. What a blast we had at Pardi Gras. A big thanks to Jerry and Mary Diaz and the entire Pardi Gras crew for all their hard work.


Margaritaville fun

Sunshine Cindy and I got into town Thursday afternoon. After getting checked into our hotel it was off to start the fun. We started at Margaritaville for some dinner and to listen to some musicians as they were being interviewed on Radio Margaritaville. We immediately started to see old friends. That is what makes these events so much fun. In the evening we were at Funky Pirate and then to Tropical Isle for more trop rock music. The evening ended at Deja Vue for some late night food.


Pub Crawl taking over Bourbon Street

Friday was a full day of partying. We participated in the Pub Crawl. We listened to music at Top of the Trop. From there we were in a float for the Pardi Gras parade. This is a true Mardi Gras style parade through the streets of the French Quarter. Thousands of people lined the streets as the parade made it way down Bourbon St. This was a blast. After the parade we stayed at Tropical Isle for a while before heading to Lafitte’s for a midnight pirates toast. We were not done yet. After the toast we hit the hotel bar for a nightcap.


Looking for some beads during the parade

Saturday’s big event was the street party. They close down a block of Bourbon St and we have a party that rocks the street. Saturday night had a band at Margaritaville and we then once again capped the night at the hotel bar.

Sunday it seemed like everyone was low on energy. But there was still music to listen to and beers to drink. We tried to get some time to watch some of the football games too. Sunshine Cindy and I had a nice meal on the balcony at Frank’s Restaurant. We also met a big group at Grapevine Restaurant. This is a real nice place.  We planned to make it an early evening but we had to stop at the hotel bar again. Terry the bartender was cracking jokes the whole time we were there. He made it fun. When Sunshine Cindy and I got back to our room we went out on our balcony and our neighbor came out. We ended up sitting out there having some drinks and having a blast. So much for an early evening.

Monday we came back home but not before stopping in Biloxi and hitting the Margaritaville Casino for some food and gambling. We finally got home in the late afternoon exhausted from “Embracing the Chaos!” for four days.

Time to get back into our Destin routine. See you Thursday!!!

Article source: http://destinsteve.blogspot.com/2013/01/pardi-gras-fun-in-new-orleans.html

Prep for New Orleans

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It’s time to party in New Orleans. We leave in a few hours to drive over and join the Pardi Gras folks. We have a full four days of fun in store. But we also have had some fun at home this week before we left. Monday was spent putting the finishing touches on our Crab Island Mambo Mullet Wrapper newsletter. It was our biggest and best effort yet. You can read it here: http://www.crabislandmambo.com/Mullet-Wrapper-January-2013.html

Tuesday we headed over to Johnny O’s for some dinner. They have good beer specials including 25 oz’s of Sam Adams for only $5.50. A great deal. While we were eating, Sunshine Cindy thought she recognized a friend from Alabama walking in. He sat at the bar and sure enough, it was Keith. He was in town on business and stopped in for some dinner. We joined him at the bar and had a fun time talking and catching up. We will see Keith and his wife Leigh this weekend in New Orleans too so we had a lot to talk about.

Wednesday I took off from work to prep for the trip. In the evening I went to KC’s Sandbar. Jan was supposed to play but it was raining and there was only a couple people there. Wayne came out and joined me and I got the lowdown on his trip to Belize. He had a blast as I expected.

We decided to go to Anglers so we could be inside out of the weather. There were only a few folks in there. Nate was working. I have not seen him in a while. It took about an hour but the place totally cleared out so we could say we closed down the bar!!! LOL  From there I headed home to get a good night’s sleep and be ready for the drive to N.O.

Late Monday I will have a full wrap up of our trip to the Big Easy!!! See you then….

Article source: http://destinsteve.blogspot.com/2013/01/prep-for-new-orleans.html

Parrot Island Ukulele

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Parrot Island Ukulele

Parrot Island Ukulele. As I have admitted earlier, I have been bitten by the Ukulele bug. I find it to be an extremely relaxing instrument and I love introducing the Uke to folks who have never heard one (or have a suspicious view of the Ukulele).

I started the day by visiting the members of the Durham Foundation (a fundraising group at Durham Middle School in Acworth, Georgia). After I played them a few songs, I shared with them a little about our band (the Parrot Island Band: a Jimmy Buffett Tribute Band from Atlanta, Georgia). It was a very nice visit and they must have enjoyed our visit as they enthusiastically took all of the business cards that I brought.

My next stop was the area where the middle schoolers are dropped off each day. I was asked to be one of the community greeters and thought I would play them a little Ukulele to start their day. While I received the expected eye rolls and head shakes (after all… they ARE middle schoolers), I did get a few grins and some seemed to enjoy the music (shhh… don’t tell anyone!). A few of the students did not know what a Ukulele is so perhaps I planted a few seeds that will grow at some point in the future.

As it has been a very dreary day here in Georgia (rainy and a bit chilly), I thought I would put together a quick Ukulele video (played on my Sruce top Eddy Finn Ukulele) of one of my first songs… “Parrot Island”. Parrot Island is really a state of mind, a place with palm trees, parrots and a tropical breeze. I am including the words, feel free to put on a Hawaiian shirt and sing along…

 

Parrot Island

We all need a place where we go just to get away

Call it a holiday and stay for awhile

Leave all of our worries and hurries a mile away

Come climb aboard today, just bring a smile…

Chorus:

Just sit back and close your eyes, soon we’ll be there

The beaches are white and the ocean is clear

The palm trees are blowing, do you feel the breeze?

On Parrot Island come do as you please…

We all need a dream that will keep us awake

A special place we can go throughout the day

To help us remember to take time to play

Come climb aboard and we’ll be on our way…

Chorus:

Just sit back and close your eyes, soon we’ll be there

The beaches are white and the ocean is clear

The palm trees are blowing, do you feel the breeze?

On Parrot Island come do as you please…

I know you are wondering, “Can this really be”?

A place you can go in a moment of need

Would you like to go to that Island with me?

Just climb aboard and I will promise you’ll see…

Chorus:

Just sit back and close your eyes, soon we’ll be there

The beaches are white and the ocean is clear

The palm trees are blowing, do you feel the breeze?

On Parrot Island come do as you please…

 

As the Eddy Finn Ukulele Ambassador (www.eddyfinnukes.com), I am always looking for places to play and spread the joy of playing Ukulele. You may also be in need of a Trop Rock Jimmy Buffett band this spring or summer, so please keep us in mind and contact us at www.parrotislandband.com if we can be of help. Until then…

 

Beaches and blessings,

Bry

Article source: http://www.parrotislandband.com/2013/01/16/parrot-island-ukulele/

Vacationing In The Keys

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Vacationing In The Keys – Southernmost Castaways Coconut Castaways January Jump Up


^Listen to “Raise My Glass To The Upper 48” while you enjoy the blog!^

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If someone from, let’s say Chicago, wants to get away for a few days, where would they go? Depending on the time of year and what they’re looking for could result in a holiday in Vail, Colorado, The Grand Canyon, Yellowstone Park, New England, Florida, The Conch Republic, Washington D.C. New York City, Austin Texas.. the possibilities are endless, especially if the individual elects to spend that time within the United States.
So, here I am, living in the capital of the Conch Republic and I have an opportunity to take a few days off, what do I do? Well, pretty much the same as the aforementioned individual from Chicago, in that I’m staying within the boundaries of my own country… albeit the Conch Republic, that is 😀
For those not familiar with the Conch Republic, per say: The Conch Republic stretches from the Dry Tortugas, 70 (113Km) miles west of Key West, through the Marquesas islands, and on through Key West and up all of the Keys, extending 18 miles (29Km) up the mainland to the Last Chance Saloon, the first structure in Florida City. The State of Florida considers us part of Florida and the United States of America considers us part of the USA. Let it be stated, that as citizens of the Conch Republic, we are first and foremost very proud Americans! We also allow the State of Florida go on believing we are part of that state because they do things for our benefit, like maintain our bridges and roads. As long as people have lived in the Keys, when they had to travel to the mainland they would say “I have to go up to Florida”. The fact is, the mentality here is entirely different than anywhere else in the world. I recall when I used to live in Cutler Bay, I’d `drive down to Key Largo, which was only about 35 miles (56Km) away, the great weight of the mainland’s stress suddenly lifted off of my shoulders. That eighteen mile stretch from the Last Chance Saloon to Key Largo was such a cool ride too! First, the drive through the Everglades which would gradually transform bit by bit, into the Keys.
I naturally spent quite a bit of time in the upper Keys back then, Key Largo, Tavernier, and Islamorada so I know it somewhat well. Therefore, with the option of leaving the big city of Key West and all the hussle and bustle that goes on here, where do I want to go for a few days off? I wanted to go someplace that actually is Laid Back. I packed up the dogs and headed to a marvelous place in Key Largo, Sunset Cove Beach Resort, which sits bayside on the southbound lane of US1 (the only road that runs through the Keys). They have a beautiful beach, with four tikis. The grounds also had a large tiki hut with a bar that would be ideal for larger groups. This place was what I call “Old Keys”, while it had all modern conveniences; the place itself was most likely built in the 40’s or 50’s. Robin, the manager, whom I’m guessing hails from South Africa, judging by his accent, was just a pleasure to work with as well.
Everyone’s different, but damn, if I want to stay in a modern motel, I can go up to the mainland and get a sterile room at a Holliday Inn. Hell, if I’m in the Keys, I want history and character! Besides, the room was spotless, had a refrigerator, micro wave, and a large flat screen TV/DVD player. Myself, I only used the ‘fridge. Other rooms were available with full kitchens, btw.

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I met a charming couple on the beach my first morning, Ellie and Richard. Their home was severely damaged up in Mass. in Hurricane Sandy and had been at Sunset Cove for six weeks. They are there for about another month while repairs were being done. Now these folks had the right idea! They were up early, had breakfast at a place almost right next door, Mrs. Mac’s, then headed to the beach, where they would spend the entire day just absorbing the beautiful tranquility and scenery of sail boats anchored just off shore, glistening in the sun reflecting off the water, while meeting new people every day. I didn’t ask, however this seemed to be their daily routine. They were always quick to offer a beer or a cocktail as well.
Richard made a statement that stuck with me. “Life is made from good memories. You may change places, but the memories where you’ve been and the people you’ve met will always be with you. We love it here”

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Exactly !

As in all things Keys, the sunsets are outstanding. Key Largo sits on Blackwater Sound to its west. This is the exact same body of water that Humphrey Bogart motored out of, in the Bogart/Bacall movie “Key Largo”, held at bay by Edward G. Robinson’s character, the gangster Rocco, albeit just up the coast a few miles or so (that movie was filmed at the Caribbean Club, MM104). Sunset is always something to relish in the Keys, no matter where you are!
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As sunset was approaching, a beautiful young woman headed out on the water on a paddle board. After she was out maybe seventy five yards, she started doing yoga on the paddle board! I know I surely would have gone overboard, however watching her I realized that at least for myself, I’ve never seen anyone do yoga on a paddle board. She was obviously very well versed with it! Additionally, sufface to say from the picture, it’s working!
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In short, Sunset Cove is HIGHLY recommended!

http://sunsetcovebeachresort.com/

Heading home on Tuesday I had a part in the Southernmost Coconut Castaways January Jump Up, which this month was being held at Mangrove Mama’s, MM20 on Overseas Hwy. What a great time that was! Mangrove Mama’s was originally a Railroad Station back when the Overseas Highway existed, between 1912 and 1936, before a severe hurricane wiped out the upper section of the railway in Islamorada, at the cost of over 600 lives of railway workers. Mangrove Mama’s is a great place and the event had Captain Ron, Captain Josh, Myself, and Howard Livingstone playing. The Southernmost Castaways are a splendid group of people as well, do gooders who know how to have a good time as well! Thanks Everyone!

http://www.southernmostcoconutcastaways.com/

(Regretfully, my camera somehow lost the pictures I took at the event. 🙁     )

All the best from Key West!

Key West Chris CD “Shanghai’d and Marooned in Key West (things could be worse” is available for download on iTunes, Beachfront Radio, CD Baby, CD Universe, and Rhapsody. Physical copies are available at Greenworld Gallery Key West, The Cork And Stogie (Key West), The Key West Bait Shop, CD Baby and CD Universe Search “Key West Chris”

“Chris, I really loved your music !” Shelly Liebowitz (Producer of Miles Davis, Ella Fitzgerald, Dr. John, Maria Muldaur, Ray Brown..ex)


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Article source: http://keywestmusic.blogspot.com/2013/01/vacationing-in-keys-southernmost.html

Fun weekend in Destin

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Our weather continues to be amazing. Highs in the 70’s and low’s in the 60’s. I wish it would stay this way till spring! It was a fun weekend here on the Emerald Coast. Friday night the ECPHC had a meeting at Harry T’s. We packed the upstairs area. Harry T’s put out a great spread of food and Tim from Flash Flood was playing music. It was also Julie’s birthday weekend. She was getting shots and beers handed to her to celebrate. Phil and Norma were there. Phil even got up and sang a song with Rusty.


Steve and Mark at Harry T’s

From there a big group of us went to the Rotten Apple to catch the end of Matt and Mindy’s show. The Apple has beautiful hardwood floors. Sometime over the last few days they a water leak and a big part of the floor is all buckled up. I hope they can fix it. We had a blast at the Apple.

Saturday afternoon Sunshine Cindy and I headed over to Landshark Pizza to watch some of the first playoff game. Julie joined us as the place was starting to fill up for the 2nd game with the Packers. Blake and his girlfriend were there as was our friend Steve. I got a call from Matt saying he was at the Boathouse and they were selling beer for $2 each. I told him we would be there in a little while. After eating a great pizza Renee made for us we headed over.


Sunshine Cindy and Matt

As we walked in we saw Blake and his girlfriend there. I joked they had gotten the memo too. Turns out Blake was going to play after Rusty finished. All the times I have talked to him I never knew he was a musician. A decent crowd was in there. Kenny showed up and others came and went. When Blake was finished playing, Sunshine Cindy and I headed out the door to go home but we heard music from Dockside blaring. So of course we had to check it out. There was a good crowd of younger folks listening to music from someone’s IPod.

It was good country music for the most part. The old Hank Jr. song, “Whiskey Bent and Hell Bound” came on and I started singing along. That song got me turned onto country music in the mid 70’s. Some young guy saw me singing along and high fived me. It’s funny because I was partying to that song long before he was born! Paige was there and she talked to us. Finally a young couple came in on a type of bar crawl/scavenger hunt. They needed to get a kiss from a total stranger. I guess it does not get much stranger then Sunshine Cindy and me so we were happy to oblige them! LOL

Sunday I hunkered down to watch the Falcons playoff game. After having lived in Atlanta for 20 years, the Falcons are my second favorite football team after the Browns. They got off to a great start in the game but then blew the big lead. But like they have done most of the year they came back in the last few seconds to win it. Yep, never a doubt! LOL After the game I headed to Sago. Sunshine Cindy stayed home to get some stuff done around the house. Julie, Jan and Loujean were there. As I was walking in they were leaving to head to Landshark. So off I went too. I stayed there for a few beers before heading back home.

We have heard Scullys in Ft. Walton Beach has been sold. The plan is to keep the same name. It remains to be seen if the food and music will stay the same. We are off to New Orleans this weekend. It’s a Parrothead party that is always a blast. I will have the Thursday blog out before we head over. See ya then!!!

Article source: http://destinsteve.blogspot.com/2013/01/fun-weekend-in-destin.html