Archive for March, 2014

Wet and Wild Weekend in Destin

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What a crazy few days we had here in Destin. It started on Thursday night. Sunshine Cindy and I planned to get out for just a short while to relax. We stopped at Sago Sports Bar but it was closed for a private party. It turns out Roy Jones Jr., the boxer was performing there with his band. So we headed to Landshark pizza instead. There was a crowd building to watch the Wisconsin basketball game. As the game started Sue and Brian came in. Sue joined us and the party was on. We stayed for the entire game then the four of us walked down to Cash’s for a while. We finally headed home pretty late.

Friday about noon we had a major line of thunderstorms blow through our area. It was one of the most intense storms we have had in a long time. Wind gust were measured at over 75 mph. Trees and poles were down, power was out and debris was everywhere. The big canopy at Harborwalk over the stage collapsed in the middle of the storm. Good news is no one got hurt.

We had to go to Fort Walton to drop our taxes off with Tommy. The storm had been over for a few hours but the cleanup was still going on. When we got back to Destin we passed The Crust Pizzeria. The back of the building looked like their awning came down and they were closed. We stopped at Fisherman’s Wharf for some late lunch. They didn’t have any damage there. I ordered a happy hour appetizer of Buffalo Shrimp. I expected a small plate of shrimp. What I got was a big plate with a heaping mound of shrimp. It was delicious.

Friday night was a Parrot Head meeting at Groovy Grouper in the Destin Commons. Jan and Kenny were playing. Despite the fact it was still raining on and off, we had a good crowd show up for the party. We ran into our old neighbor Stephan who was working there. It was a fun night but time to head home after it was done.

Saturday did not turn out like originally planned. We were supposed to go to Niceville to hear Southern Drawl Band play in the evening. We got a call from Dottie about noon saying she heard the show was cancelled. We made some calls and found out the venue had the wrong date for the show and they were not set up for it. Oh well, that’s showbiz sometimes I guess.

Sunshine Cindy and I headed to the harbor instead. The plan was to talk to a few folks about Crab Island Mambo, have some dinner and head back home. Wayne was going to join us. Sunshine Cindy and I met Wayne at the Shark Shack. I wanted to talk to Tom and Sandy to make sure they were going to be there on Sunday as we would drop off our shirts they are going to carry in their store. Sandy was there and everything was a go for Sunday. The Shark Shack had a good crowd of fishheads hanging around like usual.

We then headed up the hill to The Crust. I wanted to see how Charley was doing after the storm. It turns out they took a big hit. The awnings over the outside seating area blew off and took out the power lines into the building. A bunch of their furniture from outside ended up blowing down Hwy. 98. They ended up having to close all day on Friday. They were back in business when we stopped. Again, at least no one got hurt.

From there we walked over to AJ’s and then to the Lookout Bar at Margaritaville. Great views from both places. We decided to head to the Boathouse for some food but we made a stop at Fishheads first to talk to Melissa and Tom. They appear to be doing great with their place. Walking over we ran into James and Jonelle. We also saw Ken and his big dog Baby Girl. Finally at the Boathouse we got a table inside while the band Gunner was playing on the outside stage. We could hear them perfectly inside.

Jacey waited on us. She was pretty new there but she has a fun personality and fits right in with the others. Gigi came by to give us hard time about not being there for a week or so. They miss us! Bree and Courtney both came by to say hello and give us a hug. It’s like family in there. We were getting ready to leave when we heard the band say they had a special guest that was going to do a few songs with them. It turned out the drummer for the rock band AC/DC was there and he did a few songs. That was so cool. We ended up with an autographed drum stick and some pictures. It was then finally time to go home!

And on Sunday we did not rest! Not with the Southern Drawl Band playing in Destin at Crab Island Cantina. Sunshine Cindy and I got down to the harbor about 1:15 for the 3 pm show. The band was already there setting up. It was great seeing Mike, Paul and Larry again. We were also introduced to the newest members of the band, JD and David. While they were setting up I ran a couple dozen Crab Island Mambo tee shirts to Bob so they can set them up in their gift shop. Look them up just west of AJ’s next to the Shark Shack. They have a lot of cool stuff besides our shirts.

I ran into Matt while I was making this trip along the docks. He is working in the Marler charter boat rental booth. We are planning to do something to help drive some traffic to The Crust Pizzeria. Not sure what but something!

Back at the Cantina the crowd was growing as the weather was perfect. We probably had over 50 Mambo’ians show up. The show was fantastic. The guys had people dancing and singing along to many of their songs. One day real soon this band will be charging big bucks to see their shows. They are that good. It was a fun afternoon that no one wanted to end.

We were not done when they finished playing. Jan and Kenny were playing their regular gig at The Boathouse. So a big group of us ended up there to end Sunday Funday! It was quite the weekend in Destin!!!

It looks like we are going to have a good week weather wise. Southern Drawl will be playing at Juana’s in Navarre Wednesday through Saturday nights. We hope to get over there to catch another show or two! Have a great week. See ya Thursday!

Article source: http://destinsteve.blogspot.com/2014/03/wet-and-wild-weekend-in-destin.html

Rebelution’s ‘Count Me In’ Summer Tour

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Just hours before they stepped on staged to kick off their Spring Greens Tour, on the heels of the announcement for their highly anticipated new album, Count Me In, Rebelution has announced the initial details surrounding their Count Me In Summer Tour!
Rebeltuion Count Me In Summer Tour

2013 was another big year for Rebelution. On the road basically non-stop from February through September, the band not only toured throughout North America but they performed on multiple continents, and at several major music festivals, including a headlining appearance at the California Roots Festival, two sets at Wakarusa, and a spot at Glastonbury. With all this time out on tour its a wonder, the band was able to find time to put together another record to release in 2014.

With the release of their forthcoming record Count Me In, set for June 10th via Rebelution’s own label, 87 Music, in partnership with Easy Star Records, it seems as if this year may be Rebelutios’s biggest year yet.

[Related: Rebelution’s New Album ‘Count Me In’]

Only two days after Count Me In drops, Rebelution will once again hit the road, traveling through the US on their Count Me In Summer Tour. Just as the band has always done, Rebelution will be bringing along excellent supporting acts. It’s the Rebelution reputation, something they are known to do, and this summer’s tour will not disappoint. Joining Rebelution all across the nation on the Count Me In Summer Tour will be none other than Iration, The Green, Stick Figure and DJ Mackle.

Thus far, only the first leg of the tour has been revealed, featuring 13 dates on the east coast. Starting June, 12th in Boston at the House of Blues, the tour will work its way south to a 4 night run around Florida, before ending in Atlanta at the The Tabernacle on June 29th. Please be sure to check back, as the second half of Rebelution’s summer tour dates will be announced soon. Playing around their scheduled appearances at music festival, the band will likely add dates throughout the rest of the US, set for July and August.

As it was previously revealed that Rebelution will be playing a handful of Festivals this season. During the beginning of May, Rebelution plays down in Florida at SunFest, then at the end the month they headline in Monterey at California Roots. During the beginning of June the band will play in Houston at the Free Press Summer Festival, at the end the month they play in Boonville, CA at the Sierra Nevada World Music Festival. On August 3rd Rebelution will play Lollapalooza in Chicago, and later in the month the band will headline Red Rocks Amphitheatre for the annual Reggae On The Rocks.

For more about Rebelution, their music and information on their tour dates, check out the details below:

Bandsintown

Rebelution Links:
Rebelution Editorials
Rebelution Website
Rebelution Facebook
Rebelution Twitter

Article By: Aaron Solomon

WATCH: The Lyric video for “De-Stress”

LISTEN: “Counterfeit Love”

This entry was posted on Monday, March 31st, 2014 at 12:10 am and is filed under Daily News, easy star records, Rebelution.
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Article source: http://www.thepier.org/rebelution-count-me-in-summer-tour/

Michael Franti – Biography

Posted in Featured Artist of the Week, Reggae Roots Music, Trop Rock Artists | Comments Off on Michael Franti – Biography

All the freaky people make the beauty of the world!

Michael Franti knows all about the power of music. He knows how it can inspire, uplift and make people want to dance or cry. He felt it firsthand recently when he heard the children’s chorus at New York’s PS22 elementary school singing “I’m Alive (Life Sounds Like),” the celebratory first single from Franti’s tenth studio album, All People.

“It moved me to tears, to hear these kids singing, ‘Everybody wants me to be who they want me to be.’ That’s who I wrote ‘People’ for. To let them know, your mission in life should be to be yourself and to embrace the diversity of others.”

It’s a rule the barefoot, 6-foot-6 San Francisco based singer-songwriter-guitarist and philanthropist has diligently followed over the past two decades, proactively creating and supporting numerous environmental, humanitarian and social causes. It explains the evolution of sound on All People, colossal dance beats and dizzying electronic effects taking the fore, as well as a lyrical sincerity that has always had Franti singing about what moves him most.

All People is the follow-up to Franti’s wildly successful 2010 release, “The Sound of Sunshine”, his highest charting album to date. Recorded primarily at his home with guitarist J Bowman, the two recorded some 35 songs before settling on the final track list for All People. For the first time, Franti reached out to collaborate with various writers and producers.

“It was like speed dating,” Franti says. “You’ve got a limited amount of time to write the greatest song you’ve ever heard. But when it works, it’s magic.”

The chemistry is evident on collaborations with multi-platinum Australian producer/songwriter Adrian Newman, who co-wrote “Long Ride Home,” “Closer To You,” “Say Goodbye” and “I’m Alive (Life Sounds Like)”, as well as with the seven-time Grammy-nominated Canadian production team The Matrix, who produced and co-wrote the tracks “11:59” and “On and On.”

Sam Hollander, another collaborator who has worked with chart-topping acts like Train, One Direction and Katy Perry, came on for the songs “Wherever You Are” and “I Don’t Wanna Go.” Franti says, “He also comes from a similar musical experience as I do, growing up when rap, punk and reggae were merging. But he also really knows the pop realm.”

Not that Franti has completely left behind the world of the 24-hour news cycle. His outrage can be heard on tracks like “11:59” and “Say Goodbye,” which was inspired by the Trayvon Martin shooting. Instead, Franti has both widened his scope of the world and pulled in closer for his most intimate moments.

Many of the love songs on All People are born from his relationship with his partner Sara. “These songs are about the power of unconditional love, born out of tough times. It’s rare to find someone who accepts you being your own authentic self. In the past I didn’t always give space for the broad spectrum of emotion, but this time I made an effort to write about everything I experience.”

More than ever, the songwriter looked to his primary influences for inspiration, referencing the wide range of work by music icons like John Lennon, Bob Marley, Johnny Cash, Marvin Gaye and the Clash. Of the sound on All People Franti says, “My favorite artists were great at pop form. I don’t think I’ve changed what I do. I just realized I can do it simpler and more direct.”

Franti and his band Spearhead are known for the communal spirit they create with their extraordinary live shows. The singer regularly brings down the barrier between the performers on stage and the people in the audience; whether venturing into the crowd to slap hands or pulling fans up to dance, sing and play along with the band. He’s a dynamic performer who effortlessly moves tens of thousands of people with his invocations. Watching him, you can’t help but think about how much he delights in every moment.

From his beginnings in the post-punk band the Beatings and critically acclaimed hip-hop group Disposable Heroes of Hiphoprisy (who toured with U2 and Public Enemy) Franti has remained a devoted defender of the underdog.

For a decade, Franti hosted the Power to the Peaceful free concerts in San Francisco, at first to support incarcerated political activist Mumia Abu Jamal, then as a platform to speak out against escalating violence around the globe. He’s made several trips to hot spots in the Middle East to see war’s human toll with his own eyes. In 2005, he made the film “I Know I’m Not Alone” about his travels through Iraq, Palestine and Israel.

“I made a commitment to myself years ago that I wouldn’t just read about what was happening in the world,” he says. “I needed to go and experience it.”

It was on these trips that he realized people don’t necessarily want to hear songs that bluntly address the ills of the world but rather songs that will offer them some escape from their difficulties.

“I wouldn’t want to live in a society where anger is a force that gets things done,” Franti says. “Some people react by throwing a trash can through a window. I’d rather go play music in a school, prison or war zone. Those are the ways I choose to affect change.”

The same week his 2009 smash “Say Hey (I Love You)” broke, eventually selling over 2-million downloads, Franti’s appendix ruptured and put him in the hospital close to death. It was another moment that changed his perspective on songwriting, leading to the triumphant tone of All People.

“I want to make music that is timeless,” Franti says. “At this point in my life when I turn on the radio and hear my song it means a lot to me. When I was a kid I would go on these long drives with my family and I still remember the songs we would listen to in the car. It means I’m part of somebody’s life passages. As an artist, I cherish those moments.”

Contents found on Michael Franti’s Web Site – HERE

Mishka – Biography

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Mishka

Hawaiian based Reggae Pop star Mishka has always been a traveler.  A man on a conscious musical mission, his Journey has now come full circle.

Born in Bermuda and raised in the Caribbean, Mishka is a traveler and a sailor at heart.  A free spirit, whose lyrics melodies and grooves, are reflections of the roots and culture in which he grew, Mishka’s music is Caribbean at the core, and yet it’s an eclectic sound that contains many elements and genres.  From bass heavy roots reggae, to mellow acoustic ballads, songs of love, songs of social justice and consciousness, you have to hear for yourself and experience the music. 

Mishka’s Journey has taken him full circle, from an independent singer songwriter, to major label fame, through the bright lights of Hollywood, and finally right back home, where he is at his best, in the Islands, creating his own sound, with artistic integrity and full creative control over his craft.

Since his last studio release Mishka has reworked and re-issued several of his early albums. He also was invited to travel to Key West Fl., where he recorded at Jimmy Buffet’s Shrimp Boat studio. The Key West recordings resulted in an EP entitled Ocean is My Potion. Order Ocean Is My Potion

All along Mishka has been writing, performing, and rehearsing the songs that would become The Journey. Returning to his creative roots, fully independent and totally in control of his art and career, The Journey is a statement of where Mishka has been but also where he is going. The Journey was released on Jimmy Buffett’s Mailboat Records, November 19, 2013. Order Journey

Mishka has released four full length Albums to date including the eponymous Mishka  in 1999, One Tree  in 2005, Above the Bones in 2009, Talk About in 2010, and EP’s Anything Anytime Anywhere (2011) and Ocean Is My Potion (2012), all of which have received critical acclaim around the world. In 2009 Mishka released a special digital only collection of acoustic songs entitled Guy With a Guitar which iTunes named the Best Singer Songwriter Collection of the Year.

Mishka, has performed with a wide cross-section of top acts including Anuhea, Dirty Heads, Michael Franti, Matisyahu, John Brown’s Body, Burning Spear, Slightly Stoopid, Pepper, Luciano, Sly and Robbie, The Roots, The Cat Empire, Gregory Isaacs, Donovan Frankenreiter, Jimmy Buffet, Kenny Chesney, Zac Brown & many more.

Mishka’s releases have charted around the globe including his last three releases reaching the #1 spot on Billboard Magazine’s Reggae chart.  Mishka continues to tour extensively both solo and with his band playing clubs, theaters, and festivals all over America, Canada, the Caribbean, Hawaii, and Japan.

Content from Mishka’s Official Web Site – HERE

MP3 Leak of the Week: House of Shem

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New Zealand’s House of Shem dropped their latest album Harmony on December 6th, 2013. The first track off that album, “Take You There” is being given away this week only, exclusive on our homepage. Grab the song for free and read more on the group album, here…

You can download House of Shem’s new song “Take You There” for FREE on our home page under the MP3 Leak of the Week on the right hand column! This Download will only be available until Saturday April 5th, 2014.

House of Shem – “Take You There”
HouseofShem_Harmony
“Take You There” Background:
After releasing their new record in New Zealand back on December 6th 2013, House of Shem has signed a US Europe distribution deal with VPAL Music (VP Records Music Group), re-releasing Harmony on January 28th, 2014.

The 12 tracks of Harmony follow the 2010’s Island Vibration which debuted #1 on the New Zealand Top 40 album chart and is currently certified Gold. The third album for this Kiwi reggae outfit was recorded in a variety of studios across New Zealand throughout 2013 and mixed at the Marley’s Tuff Gong studio in Jamaica with the legendary Errol Brown, producing and engineering the release.

You can pick up Harmony on iTunes by clicking HERE!

HouseOfShem
House of Shem Background:
House Of Shem is an Aotearoa (New Zealand) based harmony trio comprised of Carl Perkins and his two sons Te Omeka Perkins and Isaiah Perkins who are each multi instrumentalist and producers.

Formed 2005 in the rural area of Whanganui, aThe band embodies elements of roots reggae, pacific reggae and traditional maori music with relatable song-writing that connects powerfully with not only New Zealand and Australia audiences, but reggae listeners globally attracting fans from all areas of the world.

Since bursting onto the music scene with their debut album Keep rising in 2008, House of Shem has released three very successful Albums and built a rapidly growing loyal fan base. Working with Grammy award winning engineers on two albums Errol Brown (Bob Marley, Burning Spear) and James Caruso(Damian Marley, Nas, Stephen Marley) and mixing at Tuff Gong Studios, Jamaica shows how dedicated House of Shem in presenting quality product to the world.

Having obtained two Platinum and Gold albums, Carl Perkins has also been inducted into the New Zealand Music hall of fame with former band, The Herbs.

Bandsintown

House of Shem Links:
House of Shem Website
House of Shem Facebook

Huge thanks again to House of Shem for allowing us to share their new song “Take You There”, to post up for FREE download. Free music is a privilege that we’re grateful for and we appreciate the work these artists do! Please feel free to download this song for free and spread the awareness to your friends!
Enjoy the FREE track on the homepage!

Article By: Mike Patti

Watch: House of Shem – “Take You There”

This entry was posted on Sunday, March 30th, 2014 at 12:10 am and is filed under Daily News.
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Article source: http://www.thepier.org/mp3-leak-of-the-week-house-of-shem/

Hold the margarita? Lime prices skyrocket nationwide

Posted in Boat Drinks | Comments Off on Hold the margarita? Lime prices skyrocket nationwide

Lime prices have more than doubled over the last few months following regional violence and a bad harvest in Mexico, the country that provides the majority of the US supply.

The average price of a lime this time last year was 25 cents, but can cost up to 53 cents each depending on the store, according to the US Department of Agriculture.

Mexican states where more than 90 percent of the limes produced for US consumption have been hit by unusually cold weather and flooding, which has affected the harvest. Lime shipments have also been intercepted by drug gangs in the region, Reuters reported.

Mexican restaurants seem to be hit the hardest by the price surge, Reuters reported. For now, some restaurant owners who are feeling the squeeze are either taking lime-ingredient drinks off of their happy hour menu, or substituting with lemons. Some restaurants who used to pay anywhere between $4 to $25 for a case of limes are now having to pay $100 per case.

Aron Espino, a Mexican restaurant owner in Omaha, Nebraska, told the Fox television affiliate KPTM-TV that he’s rationing the few limes he has left. Customers won’t find limes with all meals and on the rim of their water glass like they used to.

“We need to save them for the things we really need to use them for,” like guacamole, Espino told KPTM.

But consumers shouldn’t expect to see an increase in the price of a margarita or other lime-added food or drink at restaurants. Most restaurant owners are swallowing the cost since the price surge is not expected to last, Annika Stensson, spokeswoman for the National Restaurant Association told USA Today.

However, it’s unclear when exactly Americans should expect lime shortage to end. It wouldn’t be too far-fetched to think lime lovers and lime-dependent businesses are hoping for a Cinco de Mayo miracle.

© Copyright 2014 Globe Newspaper Company.

Kacey Musgraves Gears Up for Key West Songwriters Festival

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Kacey Musgraves

Kacey Musgraves

Technically, it might not be a vacation for Kacey Musgraves, although she surely deserves one. Nonetheless, the 19th annual Key West Songwriters Festival is a trip few of us would turn down. It’s a chance to party, play and possibly write another smash with some of the best songwriters on the planet.

Musgraves and Sara Evans are among the artists set to hit the sand and surf during the festival taking place May 7-11 in Key West, Fla. Others performers include 2013 BMI Icon recipient Dean Dillon, American Idolrunner-up Kree Harrison, Robert Earl KeenRhett Akins, Sundy Best, Love and TheftMatraca Berg,Jon Randall, Anders Osborne and the legendary Tony Joe White, to name a few.

A few of the names on the extensive list may not be familiar to you — and that’s OK. I can’t help it, though. I’ve always been fascinated with songwriters. I just don’t think they get enough love from the greater world.

Each day, we turn on our radios, pop a CD into our stereos or slap some vinyl down on our turntables and groove, cry or sing along to our favorite songs. We’re moved by the music and made happy, made sad and made to believe in their power. Those places the songs take us are purely magical.

But while we’re in those magical places, how many of us stop and think, “Man, I wonder who wrote that song?”

Nowadays, if you want to solve that mystery, your best bet is to dig into some liner notes. That, of course, requires an actual album purchase. And, let’s face it, so many of us rely on digital downloads and streaming these days to enjoy our music, accessing the finer details of an album track is more difficult than ever.

But Musgraves is one of many artists who is helping turn all that around. While the chart-topping, Grammy and CMA-winning beauty is a great singer and a breath of fresh air for country music, she’s first and foremost a songwriter. She talks openly about her passion for the poetics of it all. She gushes about her fellow co-writers, giving them their share of the credit for her success.

Musgraves knows what it’s like to be in that world where, to a vast majority of listeners, your words and thoughts as a songwriter “belong” to the artist singing the song. A perfect example is “Mama’s Broken Heart,” Miranda Lambert‘s No. 1 single which Musgraves co-wrote with Brandy Clark and ACM songwriter of the year Shane McAnally.

How many folks do you think hear that song title and say, “Oh, yeah! That song Kacey Musgraves co-wrote that Miranda Lambert made a huge hit?” Not many. And Lambert can identify, too. She herself is a brilliant songwriter likely sitting on mounds of great songs no one will ever know she wrote.

The truth be told, a little anonymity in the music world is just what many songwriters desire. Some are completely content to quietly fulfill their creative needs in studios and Music Row writing rooms without any pomp or circumstance. And there’s nothing wrong with that, either.

But the Key West Songwriters Festival isn’t going to allow for much anonymity for those creative types. It’s the place where the writers are celebrated, showered with love and toasted with the finest margaritas and piña coladas. There will be no hiding in the palm trees.

Other notable performances during the May festival will include Natalie Hemby (Lambert’s “White Liar”), Gary Chapman, Kristen KellyShawn Camp (Garth Brooks‘ “Two Piña Coladas”), Wendell Mobley (Rascal Flatts‘ “Fast Cars and Freedom”), Jessi Alexander (Lee Brice‘s “I Drive Your Truck”) and so many more incredible hitmakers.

Cheers to that!

Original Source – LINK

Where’s Spring?

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The calendar says its Spring time in Destin but Mother Nature seems to have a different opinion. Tuesday night as I drove home from work I had the top down. When I hit the Island the wind was blowing about 800 mph (or so it seemed) directly out of the north. The bay had white caps and Badass was being pushed around. It was cold by the time I got home. That night the temp went down to about 40. Ugh! Wednesday it barely got to 60 degrees. At least it wasn’t snow!

So far this week we have been working on Crab Island Mambo stuff. We signed up a new advertiser, real estate agent Mike Ryan. We are glad to have Mike aboard. We have also agreed with Tom and Sandy to have them carry our shirts in their store down on the harbor. They are right next to the Shark Shack just west of AJ’s. Check out all the cool stuff they have including the Mambo merch!

The expansion at Destin Commons is moving forward. They hope to have a grand opening for the new stores and restaurants around the Fourth of July. One of the more unique places opening will be Uncle Buck’s Fishbowl and Grill. Uncle Buck’s is a spinoff from the Bass Pro Shop folks. This location will feature a 16-lane bowling alley, a seafood restaurant that seats more than 300, a 60-seat bar with a sunken ship display above it and a billiards room. It should be interesting.

The traffic in Destin continues to get worse. The area around Harborwalk Village is especially bad. They have added a big parking lot but it is across Hwy. 98 forcing people to become human froggers as they dodge cars trying to cross the street. I hope they think about some kind of walkover in this area. It is a dangerous spot. The authorities are also in the preliminary design stage of widening 98 from Airport Road east to the Walton County line. Anything will help I guess.

This weekend from Nashville the Southern Drawl Band will be back in the Destin area. Saturday night from 6 – 10 pm the guys will be in Niceville at Dockside Oyster Grill (the old Giuseppe’s) on Rocky Bayou. Then Sunday they are back at their Destin home, Crab Island Cantina from 3 – 7 pm. You need to check out Mike Nash and the guys before you have to start paying a cover charge to see them. Yes, they are that good!

Have a great weekend. See ya Monday! 

Article source: http://destinsteve.blogspot.com/2014/03/wheres-spring.html

Nonprofit Uses Reggae To Help Combat Water Crisis In Africa

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liveupfest.jpg

 

Inadequate access to clean drinking water is a dilemma that impacts more than 780 million people globally, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. And Sub-Saharan Africa is among the areas most affected by water scarcity; 300 million people in Sub-Saharan Africa lack access to clean water, according to the United Nations-Water.

Sahel Revival is a local nonprofit determined to make clean water more accessible in poor Sub-Saharan Africa communities. And they’re using Reggae music to help achieve this goal.

This Saturday, the first annual “Live Up Fest” will take place at the Hi-Tone (422-444 N. Cleveland) to help raise awareness and support for Sahel Revival’s battle against water scarcity. The event will feature a variety of Reggae artists including Chinese Connection Dub Embassy, Roots of a Rebellion, The LTG, Kween Jasira, Juju Bushman, and more. It will start at 5 p.m. Tickets are $15 in advance and $20 at the door. A portion of the funds raised will go toward constructing a water well in Sub-Saharan Africa.

“I want people to have fun and become aware [of the water crisis],” said Abdoul Ba, founder of Sahel Revival. “In case [attendees] would like to support us, they can go to our website, SahelRevival.org. They can get involved by volunteering, helping us spread the word, or donating. Usually, a gift offered of $20 can give one person water for a long time. If you look at it holistically and globally, a water well can benefit 300 people. Twenty dollars is not much, but it can have a big impact on life in Sub-Saharan Africa.”

Ba hails from the Sub-Saharan African country Mauritania, an area largely covered by the Sahara desert. Only around 50 percent of its population has access to clean water and another 30 percent suffers from unemployment, according to Christian humanitarian organization, World Vision.

Ba hopes Sahel Revival can help bring social change and better living conditions to those affected by inadequate access to free clean water in his native country and Sub-Saharan Africa as a whole.

“In my city and country everybody is affected by water shortages,” Ba said. “My city suffers from yearly cholera outbreaks that leave many people dead, especially children. It’s impossible to be in my city and country without seeing [and] feeling the water shortage. [There’s also] food shortages. Where there’s no water, there will be no food, so malnutrition is also a very present problem.”

Sahel Revival in presenting the event in conjunction with Chinese Connection Dub Embassy and Brister Street Productions.

To find out more about Live Up Fest, click here
To find out more about Sahel Revival and how you can support, click here
View the video below to get more in tune with the Sub-Saharan water crisis.

Original Source – LINK

Bob Marley Became The Reggae King Through Hard Work

Posted in Reggae Roots Music | Comments Off on Bob Marley Became The Reggae King Through Hard Work
Marley grew up in Jamaica, took his music to America, hit it big with "One Love" and other songs  and was a multimillionaire when he died at just 36....Marley grew up in Jamaica, took his music to America, hit it big with “One Love” and other songs and was a multimillionaire when he died at just 36…

Bob Marley topped the hit parade in his home country.

But at the glitzy Hotel du Pont in Wilmington, Del., he was a janitor.

He was sick of being poor. A front man for his band, the Wailers, he’d gulped water when he was little to stave off gnawing hunger.

Music was supposed to be his ticket out of the slums.

It wasn’t. The group’s weekly pay from Kingston’s Studio One records was the equivalent of just $25 today.

“They were called the Jamaican Beatles,” Roger Steffens, who was a Marley friend and onetime co-host of a reggae radio show in Los Angeles, told IBD. “At one point, they had five of the top 10 records at once in Jamaica.”

It was painful. So Marley (1945-81) moved in with his mom in the States and got grunt jobs.

Marley’s Keys

  • Sold millions of records while bringing Jamaican music to the world.
  • Overcame: Poverty.
  • Lesson: Surge, even when the going’s tough.
  • “My music will go on forever. Maybe it’s a fool say that, but when me know facts me can say facts. My music will go on forever.”

He struck gold that winter, though, figuring out how much he was willing to do for his music. After each shift, he did nothing but sit in his basement, practicing riffs on his guitar and writing songs.

Lesson: Get hungry for your true calling.

Rich With Melodies

Marley went on to be a multimillionaire.

His biggest hits: “One Love” — named song of the millennium by the BBC — “Stir It Up,” “No Woman, No Cry,” “Get Up, Stand Up” and “Jamming.”

When he died at just 36, Marley was worth an estimated $30 million, or $75 million today.

The money keeps rolling in.

His albums have sold more than 75 million. Last year the Marley name earned $17 million.

Marley’s greatest hits album, “Legend,” has sold more than 250,000 copies a year since it was released in 1984. It’s the second-longest charting album in the history of the Billboard charts.

“It’s an annuity for his children, 30 years later,” said Steffens.

Marley was born in Nine Mile, Jamaica. His dad, Norval, was a British land surveyor who left Bob’s mom, Cedella, soon after birth.

From the start, Robbie had a sweet singing voice. As he grew, it gained a bit of an edge.

At age 5, Bob was brought to Kingston, the country’s capital, and moved in with relatives.

“Bob was on his own,” said Mike Watson, founder of Midnight Raver, a website that promotes reggae music. “There was nobody to look after him.”

“That,” said Steffens, “can turn you really bad really fast or do what it did to Bob.”

Marley's 12-string acoustic guitar is on display as part of the Hard Rock Cafe's "Gone Too Soon" tribute. AP   Marley’s 12-string acoustic guitar is on display as part of the Hard Rock Cafe’s “Gone Too Soon” tribute. AP  View Enlarged Image

He made music out of it all.

His new neighborhood, Trench Town, was called the Jamaican Motown. Marley bathed in a rich gumbo of Caribbean beats. By radio, he caught Fats Domino, Elvis Presley and Frankie Lymon & the Teenagers. Soon Bob begged to be let into a small recording studio. In 1962, the 16-year-old cut his first record, “Judge Not.”

Not indeed; the song got almost zero airplay.

Undeterred, Marley thought he’d try a band. So he created the Wailing Wailers with buddies Neville Livingston — known as Bunny — and Peter Tosh in 1963.

Their sound was part doo-wop, part Caribbean, all catchy.

“Music had been a hobby for Bunny, but Bob took it seriously,” wrote Christopher John Farley in “Before the Legend.” “He saw it as a career, a way out.”

To help strengthen their melodic punch, Marley asked veteran singer Joe Higgs to coach the band. The guru’s pitch to get perfect: 10,000 hours of practice.

That meant marathon rehearsals. “More than two or three hours,” Watson said. “Sometimes, it could have been part of a day, outside, under a tree, very hot. Constant repetition. Grueling repetition.”

The Wailers recorded “Simmer Down,” scoring their first big local hit in 1964.

Over the next few months, Marley and the gang refined and slowed their style into what’s now known as reggae. Their moniker became the Wailers. “His music stood for something,” Steffens said. “It was message music.”

A string of Studio One records rocked the dance halls.

Downside: The pay was peanuts.

By 1965, the hit man of Jamaica was homeless, sleeping on the floor of the studio storage room.

What finally put Marley on a cash quest: love.

He married Rita Anderson, a vibrant singer who would become a key member of the band, in 1966. That same week, Marley left to hunt for jobs in Delaware.

“He knew he had the talent, he knew he had the drive,” said Watson. “But he had to go make money.”

Less than a year later, Marley was back on the Caribbean island and on a mission. “They used to call him the Skipper,” Watson said. “He was like an immovable rock. He was not going to budge on something he felt was right.”

To gain more direct access to the market, Marley launched a record company called Tuff Gong.

Tough was right. Everyone hustled to get the songs out. Right up there was Rita, hitting the streets of Kingston on her bicycle to distribute records feverishly.

Marley’s luck finally turned when record producer Chris Blackwell offered his band a deal with Island Records, the future U2 label.

Marketed as a rock phenomenon, Bob Marley and the Wailers released their first international album, “Catch a Fire,” in 1973.

From the start, Blackwell could tell Marley had star potential.

“When it was finished and coming out, I was really excited,” Blackwell said in an interview with Rolling Stone magazine last year. “I felt it would be a really important album. I thought very early that it would sell a million copies.”

To prime the pump, Blackwell sent the band on a worldwide tour.

Livingston and Tosh hated road life. They quit the band.

Marley kept on grooving, adding the I Threes, a dynamic trio of backup singers that included Rita.

The new group was all about live performances. No spangles for the king of reggae, though. He didn’t need them. Swaying in street clothes in his characteristic long locks, he mesmerized.

Band members could expect to be prepared for tunes to last anywhere from three to 20 minutes.

Marley had a vision for each show. No two were the same.

“He knew how to play all of the instruments,” Steffens said.

Rohan Marley, CEO of Marley Coffee, recalls his dad didn’t have to raise his voice to make folks pay attention. “All he had to say was, ‘Hey boy, come here, sit down,’ and I would start crying,” he told IBD.

By 1976, he was playing huge shows. Two nights before the much-buzzed-about Smile Jamaica concert in Kingston, thugs unleashed a spray of bullets on Marley while he was rehearsing. His arm was hit. Rita was rushed to the hospital with a gash in her skull.

The Comeback

Both were shaken but survived. There was no way Marley could play guitar with his arm in a sling. But he could still peal out the lyrics.

Marley’s desire was to promote peace in his country. He knew 80,000 people were coming to receive the message. “He considered for two days what he should do,” said Watson. “What he did was he went out there and went onstage. He gave the greatest performance I’ve ever seen.”

The band was committed to the show. Rita, released briefly from the hospital, performed with her head bandaged. She had surgery the next day. The crowd went wild, and the venues got bigger.

In 1980, a throng of 100,000 came to see Marley play in Milan, Italy. The U.S. leg was next. But Marley couldn’t complete that tour.

In September, the superstar was told cancer had invaded his body. He died eight months later in a Miami hospital.

He left behind the best part of himself: songs to inspire. “Hundreds of years into the future,” wrote Steffens, “Marley’s melodies will be as prevalent as those of any songwriter who has ever lived.”

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