Thursday, July 1, 2010
When things don't look good for your hometown...when oil is washing up on your childhood beaches...when your sister's business is hurting...what do you do? Well...tonight here in Gulf Shores, Alabama...JIMMY BUFFETT decided to do a SURPRISE FREE two hour concert at his sister's restaurant...LuLu's! WOW...what an awesome treat for all our loyal tourist that have come to our beautiful ALABAMA beaches... even when we have oil washing up daily...this has not been a good week here...we have really been hit hard. I'm sorry that I didn't make it to LuLu's to see Jimmy, but I would rather have all the wonderful people who have not given up on us and are here spending their vacation with us...they are the ones that deserve this awesome treat! Here is the article and some pics that were reported in our local newspaper (Mobile Register).
GULF SHORES, Ala. -- At about 6:30 p.m. Lucy Buffett delivered some bad news: Bluesman Sonny Landreth, who was supposed to play at her waterfront restaurant, Lulu's at Homeport Marina, had had to cancel his scheduled show. But, working a family connection, she had procured a substitute performer: her brother and south Alabama favorite son Jimmy Buffett.
Buffet and his seven-piece Coral Reefer Band then launched into a two-hour set before a very stoked crowd that grew through word of mouth to well over 2,000.
Though he played unannounced in 2000 at his mother's birthday party at the old Lulu's on Weeks Bay, tonight was his first performance at his sister's much larger location in Gulf Shores. And for the occasion he rolled out much of his classic material, including hits "Margaritaville," "Volcano," and "Cheeseburger in Paradise."
Imagine the surprise of diners like Amy Brown, who had arrived with her husband in Gulf Shores on Friday, prompted by the promise of a Buffett concert that had been scheduled for tomorrow night at the city's public beach. Surfside weather associated with Hurricane Alex forced that show to be rescheduled for July 11, and the Elizabethtown, Ky. couple was disappointed they wouldn't be able to make it back to the beach next weekend, she said.
"We were very upset," Brown said. "We came here for dinner tonight and this surprised us."
From the stage, Buffett thanked those like the Browns who stuck with their plans to visit Alabama's beaches despite the Gulf oil spill that has had a disastrous effect on the area's tourism-driven economy and the announcement that tomorrow's show would have to be postponed.
"How many of you heard the bad news and came anyway?" he asked between songs.
The crowd roared.
"Aren't you glad you did?" Buffett asked.
Again, the crowd roared.
That Buffett planned to play an unannounced gig was a closely guarded secret.
Many Lulu's employees were left in the dark until moments before the show. Inquisitive servers who wondered why Buffett's road crew was on the grounds were told that because they were already in town, they had been hired on to help prepare for concerts that would bookend the beach show, said Johnny Fisher, the restaurant's general manager.
Even Gulf Shores Mayor Robert Craft, who had begrudgingly pulled the plug on the big event Monday afternoon, didn't get wind of the secret show until this afternoon.
Buffett, who wore a T-shirt on which he had scrawled "We'll be back Sunday," was ferried to the show via the Intracoastal Waterway by a boat that moored near the outdoor stage.
"It was a hard secret to keep," Fisher said. "Jimmy wanted to play as soon as the other show was canceled."
Once it was clear Buffett was there to jam, the news coursed through Internet and cell phones.
Cars overflowed onto nearby roads for several blocks in every direction.
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Posted by Linda@Coastal Charm at 8:02 AM