Archive for March, 2013

St. Patty’s Day in Destin

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What a crazy couple of days we had here in Destin. It started out Thursday night. We went to Crab Island Cantina for a while. It was a beautiful evening and a great sunset. Dominic was working the bar and Judy was back from vacation running the show. Sunshine Cindy and I left there and decided to stop in at the Rotten Apple. Brian was at the bar. We sat next to him and shared some stories. Josh was working the bar. After a while, Brian from Landshark Pizza came in with some out of town friends of his. Brian bought us a round and the party was on. We had a fun time there with everyone.

Friday we dropped off our tax stuff with Tommy Gill, our CPA. Being in Ft. Walton we decided to stop in at Anglers. The usual suspects were there. Red was working the bar. Hoppy was in his usual spot. Kim was also at the bar. We were there only a few minutes when Mark and his brother Eric came in. Eric and his daughter Kate were doing the spring break thing and Mark was showing them around. That was a surprise seeing them.

We left and headed to the harbor. We stopped back in at the Cantina. We wanted to talk to Carlos and see if the plans to have Southern Drawl Band play were finalized yet. They were just an hour before. The band will be playing April 18th at 9 pm and April 21st at 2 pm. It’s going to be fun! We hung around the Cantina for a while talking to Greg who was working the bar. A good crowd was coming and going.

From there we walked the harbor all the way to the Yacht club. The boardwalk is beautiful down there but there is no real draw to get people down that way. There is a lot of work going on so hopefully there will be some places to pull the folks in. On the way back we stopped in at AJ’s. It was another great sunset. We hung out there for a good while watching all the tourist. Finally we headed to Rotolo’s. Blake was playing and we wanted to support him. The place was busy and Blake sounded great. We ended up talking to another local couple. James and Vickie were nice and I am sure we will see them around town again.

Saturday was another adventure. We have watched a new small place open on Hwy. 98 just a few doors down from Hogs Breath. It’s called Malibu Jacks. We decided to stop in and check it out. We were greeted by Wendy and James who is the owner. It’s a small beer and wine bar with some sandwiches. Several locals showed up including Kerby. There was also two David Gates’ there. Long story but both actually pilot boats that supply the oil wells in the Gulf. Small world. Our friends from Friday night, James and Vickie also joined us.

We hung around there for a good while. From there we went to Millers Ale House. We got a bite to eat and watched some of the UFC fights. A big crowd was in there to watch the fights too. It was a good mix between locals and Spring Breakers.

Sunday was St. Patty’s day. We were at Crab Island Cantina all day. We had Paul Roush from South Florida playing for all the green revelers. He put on a great show. Many of our friends showed up. Even a few rain drops that forced us to move Paul in to the inside stage did not dampen the fun. Harborwalk Village was packed with folks having a good time.

After the show we went to Hogs Breath for some dinner. Paul, Paula, Wayne, Cherie and Sunshine Cindy and myself had a nice time. Sunshine Cindy and I had many compliments on our Crab Island Mambo T-Shirts. We had the lime green ones on so they fit right in.

We will probably be a little more laid back this week. Enjoy your week. See ya Thursday!

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Kala Ukulele endorsing artist Stuart Fuchs

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Kala Ukulele endorsing artist Stuart Fuchs

As another week starts, it is time for another Kala Ukulele artist interview– this time we hear from Stuart Fuchs. From the sound of things, Stuart is very busy… thanks for taking the time to answer a few questions, Stuart!

If you live in the Tampa, Florida area- stop by and visit Stuart… here is some information Stuart sent me last week, “I’ll be giving a Ukulele clinic on Tuesday 3/26 @ Sam Ash in Tampa…the Dale Mabry location.  The details are at on my calendar.”

For the rest of us, here is some more information on Stuart and his Ukulele travels…

Kala Uke artist Stuart Fuchs

BIO: (

Stuart Fuchs is a performing artist, multi-instrumentalist, music educator workshop facilitator.  He plays everything he can get his hands on, but specializes in Ukulele, Gypsy Jazz Classical Guitar, Didjeridoo, and Percussion.

“Stuart travels the world with his collection of instruments and loves to spread joy through music, with spontaneous (and scheduled) acts of musical kindness.  Have you ever been treated to a spontaneous serenade in an airport gate, or in the waiting room of a doctor’s office?  If you heard soulful and peaceful refrains coming from a smiling Ukulele player, that was Stu.

“Stuart Fuchs has worked as a performing musician, teaching artist workshop facilitator for nearly 20 years—playing many styles of music on Guitar, Ukulele healing music on overtone rich instruments such as Tibetan Singing Bowls and the Aboriginal Didjeridoo.  Stuart has been called a “modern day pied piper” and has performed taught music to a diverse array of populations—from corporate executives toy designers at Fisher-Price Inc., developmentally disabled adults, juvenile offenders, and hospice patients.  Stuart believes passionately in the healing power of music to be a vehicle for personal expression wellness—he finds great joy purpose in guiding individuals into a more humanistic and natural experience of their innate musicality.”

1) Where is home for you at the moment?

“In my sweetheart’s arms!  No, really, I was born in the Bronx, NYC.  Home for 17 years has been Buffalo, NY.”

2) What were your earliest/ and current musical influences?

“Earliest? My Father was a classical guitarist I grew up listening to him play.  At a very tender age, he taught me a few things about it then let me have one of his guitars.  I would take it into the woods and then try to make the sounds of birds.  

First music that made me want to play was George Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue my sister’s David Bowie Beatles LP records. Songs by Monty Python, Pink Floyd Jimi Hendrix were what I first learned to play. Currently listen to just about anything that has soul is not overly produced.  I’m open to a lot.  I love roots music of America, Indian classical music, jazz, New Orleans funk, Classical, The Rolling Stones, Django Reinhardt….I’ll stop now ”

3) When did you start playing the Uke?

“First Uke was a cheap-o soprano in 2001.  I had no idea what it was, I just knew I wanted a small axe to play on the bus cheer me up during Buffalo’s bitter winters.”

4) What Kala Ukes are you currently playing?

“My endorsement with Kala was sealed with a Marcy Marxer signature Uke.  The fine fellows at Kala’s shop set it up just as I like it IT SMOKES! (Thank you Ryan Crew!)”

5) Any current musical projects you would like to tell us about (tours/CD’s)?

“Yes indeed!  On 3/3/13 I released my first SOLO CD called “Stukulele“. You can hear and buy it at  I have also launched a NEW WEBSITE at

I am currently touring with Bhakti Yoga/Kirtan artists David Newman Mira, accompanying them with my guitar Ukulele…singing ancient very healing Sanskrit Mantras.  It’s a meditation method a limb of Yoga known as “The Yoga of the Heart”.  Look up “Kirtan” for more.”

6) Any question that you wished someone would ask but never has? with answer of course;-)

“Q) What is the best palindrome you’ve ever heard?  

A) “I’m a lasagna hog.  Go hang a salami”. “

(Stuart… you got me there… I learned something today… I had to go look this up.  😉 For the rest of us, a palindrome “is that peculiar marvel of language when words or sentences read the same forward and backward” Good one!)

Kala Uke artist Stuart Fuchs







You can find Stuart at:

From here on Parrot Island (yes, it’s a state of mind, but I spend so much time here that sometimes it’s hard to remember I’m not really ON an island )… I hope everyone’s week is filled with sunshine, palm trees and the sound of Kala Ukuleles (that’s your cue… get off the computer and go play your Uke!)

Beaches and blessings,

Bry Harris

Kala Uke Artist

Kala Uke Artist Bry Harris

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Featured Artist – Kid Conch

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Let me tell you a story about a man named Kid… Kid Conch is mixed breed for sure. He is part beach bum, part hippie, part cowboy, part pirate, part rocker, part mountain man, part country boy. The music in his blood is part British, part Southern, part Latino, part Caribbean, and part Mediterranean. He’s a little bit country and a little bit rock and roll, with a little bit of Motown in his soul.

Kid Conch’s music blends Americana and Tropicana, country and western, reggae and calypso, Cajun and blues, rock and roll, R&B and soul into a tropical vacation for your ears. He’s as comfortable fronting a large show band with an electric guitar and he is strumming an acoustic guitar at a sidewalk cafe.

Although Kid Conch has been playing music since before he could talk, and has played in countless bands, he has only recently taken up his axe and brought his own brand of tropical rock to the public. With a couple songs under his belt The Kid plans to record as much as possible. He’s not a big believer in “albums” but when he gets some more songs together I’m sure he’ll be willing to press a CD for you. In fact Kid Conch is releasing his new sexy, soul-powered love song, “Take Me To Paradise” before the end of March.

The Kid loves to collaborate and add his soulful guitar stylings to other’s music. From time to you’ll see kid sitting in with some of his friends such as The Chris Sacks Band, Deserie, Dani Hoy, Charlie Imes, and Mike Mangum. In fact if you’re a travelling minstrel passing through Florida, look the Kid up. He love to accompany and he’s known coast to coast for his magical ability to play music he’s never heard before.

The Kid doesn’t live in any one place. He goes where the weather suits him. Some people want fast cars, some people want exotic vacations… The Kid just wants to go outside and play in the sunshine. He’s known to spend winters cloistered in a cottage on the Gulf Shores of Florida working on music like a mad scientist bent on creating life. But when summer rolls around, The Kid hits the road.

In 2013 look for Kid Conch in the Northeast in June and July, and the Southwest in August and September. And maybe a few places in between. Let him know if you’d like him to pass through your town.

You can visit Kid Conch online at or on Facebook at You’ll find a couple free MP3s on the website that some people with good taste actually like. They’ve gotten some honest to goodness rave reviews from some serious music folks and are being added to more and more internet radio stations each week.

Contact: Rick Schettino


Songwriters Island – This Week Trop On!

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Songwriters Island Radio

Songwriters Island Internet Radio
Your Source for Quality Original Music
With a Tropical Twist

House Concerts!

Most of you know that our favorite part of running Songwriters Island Radio is the LIVE broadcasts. And the best place to do a live broadcast is from a small venue or house concert. Up close and personal, getting to meet the musicians and the listeners, and enjoying all of the stories that go along with the music. So we are preparing a new feature for our new website dedicated to the folks who put on the house concerts and the musicians who play them. So please help us put together an all inclusive list. If you have a house concert venue, please email me the following information for your venue:

The Name of your Venue
Venue Address
Contact Name
Phone Number
Email Address

Or, if you know someone who does house concerts, please pass this along to them. Please send all info to

Upcoming House Concerts

March 16
Tropical Point
Jambo Joe Bones
Brian Neale

March 17
The Sandbox
Jambo Joe Bones

March 24
Tami’s House Concert
Sunny Jim & Latitude

March 30
The Sandbox
David Isler from
Harbour Knights

Please take a look at our
new website!

We have redesigned our website
for a better listener experience
including a new LIVE chat area
during LIVE broadcasts.

Join us on the new site at:

You can still listen in at the old site at:

Soon the old site will be redirected so both links will take you to the new site. We would like to get your comments and ideas on how to keep making it better. Don’t be shy, this is for you, our loyal listeners, any ideas and comments are greatly appreciated.

Margaritaville Vacation Club coming to St Thomas

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From Virgin Islands Daily News “Buffett, Wyndham share vision of Margaritaville

Jimmy Buffett has a long, colorful history with the Virgin Islands, but Friday he started a new chapter by officially launching the first Margaritaville timeshare resort.

Buffett and Wyndham Vacation Ownership President and Chief Executive Officer Franz Hanning officially unveiled the first rendering of the new resort to a small crowd of St. Thomas government officials and members of the business community.

Buffett is partnering with Wyndham to open the 262-unit resort, located at the former Renaissance Grand Beach Resort in Smith Bay on St. Thomas.

The hotel property has been abandoned for years, and Wyndham plans to invest $90 million to transform it into the flagship Margaritaville Vacation Club by Wyndham property.

Friday’s reception took place at Penga, the Point Pleasant Resort restaurant that overlooks the site of the new Margaritaville resort.

Kicking off his flip-flops, Buffett picked up his guitar and sang three songs – “Boat Drinks,” which he said was inspired by a trip to St. Thomas; “Volcano”; and, of course, “Margaritaville” – to the small crowd as the sun began to set over Water Bay.

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Detroit Show in July Confirmed

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From the Lansing State Journal: “Jimmy Buffett set to breeze into Detroit in July

Break out the beach balls and Hawaiian shirts: Detroit will get another dose of sunny tunes and tropical good times this summer.

Jimmy Buffett will announce today that he’ll play Comerica Park on July 20, reprising the 2012 concert that brought a legion of tailgaters and island-themed festivities to the downtown district.

Jackson Browne will open the show.

Seats will go on sale at 10 a.m. March 23 at, the Comerica box office and charge-by-phone (866-668-4437).

Prices haven’t been announced. At Ticketmaster, tickets for other upcoming Buffett dates are in the range of $45-$160 with fees — about the same spectrum as last year’s Comerica show.

Promoters are billing July 20 as a full-on Buffett experience: The Saturday night concert will be preceded by a Margaritaville festival just north of Comerica Park, including tiki bars, local bands and a LandShark Lounge. Those activities will kick off at noon.

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Here come’s the weekend!

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Once again there is a problem with trying to get pictures posted. Sorry but no pics today! Now, on to the blog!

Spring time in Destin is a great time of the year. Warm temps during the day make it nice. By this weekend we are going to be in the mid 70’s with sunshine. You can’t beat it.

This week has so far been spent on getting the final touches to the March Crab Island Mambo Mullet Wrapper done. The monthly newsletter will be published tomorrow. Be sure to look for it.

Spring Break season is in full swing. Over in Panama City Beach they have had their first drunk student fall off a balcony. Lucky for this guy he was on only the third floor and landed in soft sand. Most of the time they are not that lucky. Over in Walton County near Sandestin the crowds of students have been large. The last couple of years this area has become a hot spot for Breakers.

With the crowds come some problems. The cops are clamping down this year. The other day they busted a house party arresting 32 underage drinkers. They were in an almost million dollar house that was totally trashed. Two hours after the bust cops were still hauling out cases of beer and other booze. I am not sure who’s rich dad rented this place but I am sure he is going to get a large bill for repairs. I don’t understand these kids that have no respect for others property. Is this a product of our “entitlement” age? I don’t know.

The Travel Channel has just announced Destin as the Best Family Beach in the country. How cool is that. The secret is getting out.

Cobia season is right around the corner. Cobia is a fish that migrates through our gulf waters in the Spring. They are a very good eating fish but hard to catch. There are several tournaments the local boat captains enter. I am looking forward to eating some Cobia soon.

For a few years now Destin has been trying to get a Farmers Market started. It looks like this time it might happen. There are big plans for a market on Main Street at the old Destin Water Users building where local farmers can bring their home grown stuff. They hope to have organically grown food, local produce, ethnic foods and fresh dairy products. I hope they can make it work.

Join us Sunday at Crab Island Cantina for Trop Rocker Paul Roush. He is playing from 1-5 pm. Crab Island Mambo is helping sponsor this fun afternoon of music, food, drinks and friends. A full report on this event and all our other weekend fun on Monday. See ya then…

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Melanie “Djembabe” Howe Departing Southern Drawl Band

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Melanie “Djembabe” Howe Departing Southern Drawl Band



Knoxville, TN – Melanie “Djembabe” Howe has announced that she will be leaving the Southern Drawl Band as a permanent member.  Howe, the percussionist, who has been a member of the group for a little more than a year felt like she was restricting the band’s direction as she finishes up her music degree in the next few months.


“I want to thank SDB for everything over the last year, we have accomplished so much in just one year and I know those guys will continue to grow and gain popularity. It has been a great opportunity to play with the band and I will always cherish the experience,” Howe said.


Southern Drawl Band released their debut album, Against The Grain last year and an EP, “Another Day In Paradise”.  The band flashed onto the Trop Rock scene winning Trop Rock Band of the Year, Trop Rock Album of the Year, and Trop Rock Song of the Year, with “Another Day In Paradise”.  The band also released a version of “Rocky Top” as it reached charts on CD Baby and Tennessee radio stations.


She added, “This was a hard decision for me, but one that was the right move for both Southern Drawl and myself. I want to thank my great fans and their undying support, it means the world to me how much energy and love they give. I am thankful for several current opportunities ahead of me and I look forward to the next music adventure.”


Howe may still appear with the Southern Drawl Band as a special guest on select shows.



Date: March 13, 2013            

Melanie “Djembabe”

Twitter: @DrumNDance


Studio where Buffett first recorded destroyed

Posted in Trop Rock Happenings | Comments Off on Studio where Buffett first recorded destroyed has an article: “Before ‘Margaritaville,’ Jimmy Buffett’s early days remembered by Product Sound Studio owners

Jimmy Buffett is best known for his easy-going Key West lifestyle, but his musical roots began in Mobile inside a second-floor recording studio devastated by a Christmas Day tornado.

While it has not been occupied by a sound studio for decades, the location had become a popular sight-seeing stop for devoted “Parrot heads,” or loyalists to Buffett’s music. It was inside the studio where Buffett recorded his first songs.

Brown remembers getting Buffett into the studio.

“I could run (the studio) from 11 to 2 (a.m.) and during that three-hour period, we’d demo 10 songs,” Brown said. “That is unheard of today. I only had about seven of those songs ready to go and Jimmy was, by then, a good friend. I said, ‘hey, do you want to record some of yours?’ Jimmy said, ‘yeah, I want to do that.’”

Buffett, in the late 60s, was performing at the Admiral’s Corner at the Admiral Semmes Hotel in downtown Mobile.

“They were paying him $10 a night and he could put out a tip jar,” Brown said. “He wanted to get back (to work) so he didn’t lose that job.”

It was at Product Sound Studio where Buffett recorded two songs, “Don’t Bring Me Candy” and “Abandon On Tuesday.” Those two songs were released in 1970, but were not part of Buffett’s debut album, “Down to Earth.”

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Destin Chili Cook-Off

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What a fun weekend we had in Destin. It actually started Thursday evening. I stopped at Crab Island Cantina to talk to Carlos about booking Trop Rocker Paul Roush. We were able to make it happen and Paul will be playing at the Cantina on Sunday March 17th from 1-5 pm. That will be fun. Stop in at the Cantina in Harborwalk Villate to hear Paul. You will enjoy it.

Friday night the ECPHC had our monthly meeting. The big part of the meeting was taken up with plans for the next day’s Chili Cook-Off that was being held in Harborwalk Village. The weather was nice and we had a decent sunset. Alan and Jackie were there as they contemplated when to return to Illinois. Harry T’s was packed for the music, meeting and fun.

We left the harbor and stopped in at Lucky’s Rotten Apple to hear Matt and Mindy. Rose was working the bar. A good crowd was there including a group of Parrotheads. With a busy day coming up on Saturday we headed home about 10 pm.

Harborwalk Village is a perfect spot for the Chili Cook-Off. They promoted the event and all the bars and restaurants along the harbor participated. There were about 20 individual entries plus a couple of other local restaurants including KC’s Sandbar and Landshark Pizza. I got down there about noon to help with whatever was necessary. There were probably close to 100 auction items. There were so many they had to find a bigger place to display them. All the cooks were setting up and everything was in order.

To be able to taste you had to purchase an armband for $10. The tasting was to start at 3 pm but there were so many people there it started about 2:30. The crowds were large and everyone had fun tasting all the different types of chili. While this was going on a band was on the big stage playing music. The highlight of the day was when a rumor was started that Kenny Chesney was walking around with a lady. Stephanie and I spotted the guy. He had a cowboy hat on and if you drank enough he might of looked like Kenny. LOL

The other highlight of the day was a contest at Crab Island Cantina. The first annual “Lick Em, Bite Em, Shoot Em and Eat Em” contest was a blast. I actually entered. The contest in a nutshell was you had to lick the salt, bite the lime, shoot a shot of tequila and eat a tamale. Who did this most in 89 seconds was the winner. I came in second in my heat with 4 total. Not bad. It was fun as I had a lot of Parrotheads cheering me on.

The evening on the harbor ended with the Sauce Boss playing and making his gumbo and awards handed out. I am not sure how much money was raised for Relay for Life but it had to be a good amount well into the thousands. It was getting cold so Sunshine Cindy and I decided to head to someplace warm. We ended up at Sago Sports Bar with Mark, Stephanie, Larry, Cathy, Judie, Kelly and their son and daughter in law. It was nice because it was warm!

For those keeping score there was no announcement yet about Margaritaville. Some minor issues still to be worked out I am told. Oh well, maybe this week!

Sunday I headed to KC’s Sandbar Grill to hear Steven Youngblood play. He was sponsored by the Island Life Social Club. It was windy on the drive over but KC’s is sheltered. With the sun out it was actually hot. It felt great! A good group was there. Steven and Sandra did a good job and had people singing along. When I left I stopped in at Landshark Pizza to take some food home. Brian and James were there and we chatted while I waited for my pizza.

It was a fun weekend in Destin. With Spring here it is only going to get better. See ya Thursday!!!

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