Jimmy Buffett, the musical troubadour recognized for his island-tinged, rum-soaked hits together with “Margaritaville,” “A Pirate Looks at Forty” and “Cheeseburger in Paradise,” in addition to his empire of companies together with his chain of Margaritaville cafes, died on Friday (Sept. 1) at age 76.
“Jimmy passed away on the night of September 1st surrounded by his family, friends, music and dogs,” an early Saturday morning (Sept. 2) put up on his official web site learn. “He lived his life like a song till the very last breath and will be missed beyond measure by so many.”
The Mississippi-born, Alabama-raised Buffett was a globally-known star, because of his carefree hits and colourful stage exhibits, however a lot of his musical roots ran by Nashville. In 2021, Buffett and his Coral Reefer Band performed a personal present at Exit/In — 5 a long time after he made a few of his first performances on the tiny membership on Elliston Place in Music Metropolis. The membership would function a launching pad for Buffett’s musical profession, whereas Buffett and artists together with Steve Martin would assist Exit/In turn out to be one Nashville’s most venerable music golf equipment, thus serving to to launch what can be referred to as town’s historic “Rock Block,” alongside companies together with The Finish and The Gold Rush.
Buffett moved to Nashville within the late Sixties with ambitions of a profession in nation music. He grew to become a Nashville reporter for Billboard from 1969-1970, the place he’s credited with breaking the information of the breakup of bluegrass duo Lester Flatt and Earl Scruggs in 1969. His tenure at Billboard was transient, as a result of launch of his 1970 debut album, All the way down to Earth.
His follow-up, 1973’s A White Sport Coat and a Pink Crustacean (the title is a twist on a Marty Robbins hit) was recorded at Tompall Glaser’s Nashville studio, which might later be dubbed “Hillbilly Central.” Although the album owed extra to Nashville than the islands, listeners can hear beginnings of the Key West vibes Buffett would turn out to be recognized for. The album additionally testifies to Buffett’s influence as a songwriter; it contains the Buffett/Jerry Jeff Walker-written “Railroad Lady,” which was additionally recorded by artists together with Lefty Frizzell, Merle Haggard and Willie Nelson. Waylon Jennings coated one other of the album’s songs, “He Went to Paris,” on his 1980 album, Music Man, whereas Doug Supernaw recorded the observe in 1994. Buffett would additionally co-write “Happiness Alone” with Clint Black, a music that appeared on Black’s album No Time to Kill.
The Nineteen Seventies and Nineteen Eighties noticed a number of of Buffett’s songs rank on Billboard‘s country charts, including “The Great Filling Station Holdup” (1973), “Come Monday” (1974) and his star-making 1977 songs including “Changes in Latitude, Changes in Attitude” and “Margaritaville,” which would reach the top 10 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, as well as No. 13 on the Hot Country Songs chart. He also earned a top 20 country hit in 1985 with “If The Phone Doesn’t Ring, It’s Me.”
Throughout his five-plus a long time in music, Buffett earned two No. 1 hits on Billboard‘s Scorching Nation Songs chart, in addition to three high 10 hits, partly because of his willingness to keep up ties throughout the nation music neighborhood, collaborating with a variety of artists.
Buffett’s 2003 collaboration with Alan Jackson — “It’s Five O’Clock Somewhere,” about an overworked, underpaid blue collar employee who goals of escaping to the islands — grew to become an eight-week No. 1 Nation Airplay hit. The music additionally reached the highest 20 on the Scorching 100. That very same 12 months, Kenny Chesney earned a significant hit with the island-themed “No Shoes, No Shirt, No Problems,” additional proving Buffett’s model of island escapism was a key affect on the style.
However even way back to his 1998 hit “How Forever Feels,” Chesney paid homage to Buffett with the lyric, “Now I know how Jimmy Buffett Feels,” whereas the video’s tropical vibe helped cement cowboy hat-meets-puka shell necklace, “Island Kenny” persona Chesney would turn out to be recognized for in later songs and movies similar to “When the Sun Goes Down.” Additionally in 1998, Garth Brooks additionally earned a success with the tropical-themed “Two Pina Coladas,” a music written by Benita Hill, Shawn Camp and Sandy Mason; the writers had initially considered pitching the music to Buffett, earlier than it was finally pitched to Brooks. With songs like 2009’s “Toes,” “Jump Right In,” and their 2011 No. 1 hit collaboration with Buffett, “Knee Deep,” Zac Brown Band cast their very own island jam band vibe.
“When contemporary country took it to the beach, obviously we were a big part of that,” Buffett advised Billboard throughout a 2021 interview.
Notably, Buffett earned the only real Billboard 200-topping album of his profession in 2004, with License to Chill, a group of largely nation collaborations with artists together with Chesney, George Strait, Clint Black, Martina McBride, Jackson and Toby Keith.
Chesney, who was a shock visitor throughout Buffett’s 2021 Exit/In present, paid tribute to Buffett on social media, stating, “So goodbye Jimmy. Thanks for your friendship and the songs I will carry in my heart forever. Sail On Sailor.” The 2 hitmakers beforehand collaborated on “Trying to Reason With Hurricane Season.”
“To me that song is true poetry, and a true reflection of Jimmy’s ability to tell a story and to capture a moment and to paint a picture of that moment,” Chesney later stated in a video in regards to the music. He added, “I’m not sure that Jimmy gets the credit that he deserves as being a poet, like a true songwriter, storyteller poet, a lot like [Ernest] Hemingway was in his time.”
Under, we have a look at a few of Buffett’s high nation collaborations:
“Too Drunk to Karaoke” (With Toby Keith)
Keith was featured on this Buffett observe, included on Buffett’s 2013 album, Songs From St. Someplace.
This humorous story facilities on an evening spent at a packed karaoke bar. The favored nightspot has an extended line of karaoke hopefuls, and because the night lingers on and the margaritas hold flowing, quickly the music’s intoxicated narrator makes his strategy to the stage.
“Don’t have to rehearse, or even sing on key/ Just prove that theory of drunketivity,” they sing.
“Trying to Reason With Hurricane Season” (With Kenny Chesney)
Two of music’s most islands-affiliated artists, Buffett and Chesney, united on this Buffett-written music, which Chesney included on his 2018 album, Songs for the Saints. The album itself, which additionally included Chesney collaborating with Ziggy Marley and Mindy Smith, was impressed by the aftermath of Hurricane Irma, which ravaged areas together with The Virgin Islands, the Bahamas and Jamaica in 2017.
“Trip Around the Sun” (With Martina McBride)
In 2004, this collaboration reached No. 20 on the Nation Airplay chart. The music was included on Buffett’s 2004 album, License to Chill, a group of collaborations with scores of nation artists, together with Kenny Chesney, Alan Jackson, George Strait and Clint Black.
“Hey Good Lookin'” (With George Strait, Kenny Chesney, Toby Keith, Clint Black & Alan Jackson)
One other music from Buffett’s 2004 License to Chill album, this time he creates an mega-star collaboration, gathering Clint Black, Kenny Chesney, Alan Jackson, Toby Keith and George Strait for this rendition of a Hank Williams, Sr. basic. The License to Chill album drove Buffett to the highest of the Billboard 200 albums chart for the primary time in his profession.
“Knee Deep” (With Zac Brown Band)
This 2011 hit reached No. 1 on Billboard‘s Hot Country Songs chart. In 2010, ZBB’w John Driskill Hopkins advised Billboard that the Buffett collaboration got here from an opportunity assembly in 2009.
“We met him on a camping trip last year,” Hopkins stated, “and just sat around the fire with him for awhile. That was a quick friendship. He’s a real cat, really down to earth and doesn’t have a whole lot of ego and just a super nice guy…We did a lot of vocals down at his place in Key West and he happened to come through, so we got him to sit in and it sounded great. It sounds like a Buffett song when he sings it. Whatever he sings sounds like a Buffett song, y’know?”
“It’s Five O’Clock Somewhere” (With Alan Jackson)
Main the cost of Buffett’s most well-known nation collabs is his 2003 hit with Jackson, “It’s Five O’Clock Somewhere,” because of Jackson’s signature musical intro, “What would Jimmy Buffett do? The music spent eight weeks atop the Nation Airplay chart and earned a CMA Award for vocal occasion of the 12 months.
It wasn’t the primary time Jackson and Buffett had collaborated collectively; in 1999, Jackson teamed with Buffett for a collaboration of “Margaritaville,” included on Jackson’s covers album Beneath the Affect. Within the liner notes of the mission, Jackson wrote, “I’ve always been a big Jimmy Buffett fan…I like his music and the fact that he does what he wants to do.”