The first show took place at the Quiksilver Pro surfing competition at Snapper Rocks, where Buffett and band played an hour-and-a-half show in front of an estimated 1,000 people – believed to be one of the smallest shows the artist has played in decades. During the show he pulled surfing stars Stephanie Gilmore and Kelly Slater up on stage with him to help perform a few songs, watch them playing Margaritaville here.
Then, on Sunday evening, the Coolangatta Sands Hotel hosted Buffett and his band for a free show in what is surely the pub’s biggest ever Sunday session. Some rough footage from that show has emerged, and you can see it here.
“It was a big night, lots of interest, the phone was running off the hook for almost two days,” Ben Otter of the Coolangatta Sands Hotel told theMusic.com.au this afternoon.
Otter says around 400 crammed into the sold out room, with interest coming from throughout Southeast Queensland and Northern New South Wales. The venue didn’t have a lot of time to prepare for the onslaught, it all came together very much at the last minute.
“It was all very last minute, we knew about 36 hours before he played and we put it all together and he came,” Otter says. “We had it on good advice that he was coming and we met with his crew the day before, they’re a very efficient bunch of people.”
Jimmy Buffett was at the Coral Gables Museum on Thursday night to raise money for Miami Marine Stadium. Buffett and Gloria Estefan did a Q&A, and then Buffett performed a few songs with Robert Greenidge.
“I have my shameless promoter hat on now,’’ Buffett says, laughing as he exercises his fertile imagination on behalf of his latest cause: Helping to bring the iconic but weatherworn, graffiti-covered stadium on Virginia Key back to life after a prolonged dormancy of more than 20 years.
Buffett’s in league with another Miami musical icon, singer Gloria Estefan, the official face of a campaign to resuscitate the publicly owned stadium, which just turned 50 and is widely regarded as a cultural and architectural treasure.
Concerts at the marine stadium marked signal moments in the early careers of both stars, and they’re repaying the favor with a joint appearance Thursday at a sold-out fundraiser for the rescue effort at the Coral Gables Museum. After a talk-show-style Q&A with Estefan and NBC6 anchor Jackie Nespral as host, Buffett will do a few tunes with longtime steel-drum accompanist Robert Greenidge.
“The marine stadium was a pretty special place, and Miami’s always been great to me, so why not?’’ Buffett said, speaking from his Palm Beach County home. “I’m in the fun business and things that make people happy. The first time I played it, I fell in love with it. How could you not? You’re on a floating stage surrounded by people in boats, and those incredible sunsets. It was such a unique place to play in.”
Jimmy’s most vivid memory from playing at Miami Marine Stadium?
The time he jumped from the barge that served as a stage into the scrum of swimmers, boaters and floaters in the water at the end of one especially sweaty performance. He had played two shows, which had been preceded by a 56-piece steel-drum band from Trinidad, the Desperadoes.
“I remember very vividly,” Buffett said. “It was the perfect opening act. It put people in a rather festive mood. It was like being in a water carnival. There was space between the barge and the first seats in the grandstand. There were people swimming in there. It was not out of control exactly, but it was rockin’.
“No one expected that diversified amount of floating objects from large yachts to inner tubes. The size of the crowd in the water was amazing.
“It was also extremely hot. At one point, I told my stage manager, ‘When this thing’s over, take my guitar, because I’m goin’ in.’”
On January 9th, Jimmy Buffett and Gloria Estefan will appear at an event for Miami Marine Stadium where they’ll perform and discuss the legendary venue.
National Trust for Historic Preservation
Few places capture the spirit of South Florida quite like Miami Marine Stadium.
From the roar of hydroplanes to dazzling performances on the bay, it was here that Miami turned its cultural heartbeat into a spectacle the world couldn’t resist.
Join us at the Coral Gables Museum on Thursday, January 9, from 6:30-10:30 PM as we relive those glory days with two legends who once graced the stadium’s dramatic floating stage – Jimmy Buffett and Gloria Estefan.
Hosted by the National Trust for Historic Preservation, this celebration will shine a spotlight on these two musical icons as NBC 6 anchor Jackie Nespral interviews the stars about their memories of the stadium’s past, as well as their hopes for its comeback as a world class sports and performance venue. Jimmy Buffett will close the evening with a short performance.
All guests will receive a one-year membership to the National Trust, as well as free admission to “Concrete Paradise,” the Coral Gables Museum’s critically-acclaimed exhibition dedicated to Miami Marine Stadium. Complimentary cocktails and heavy appetizers will be served throughout the evening. There will also be a silent auction featuring original stadium seats signed by the stars.
Proceeds benefit the National Trust’s work to restore the stadium, as well as our host for the evening – the Coral Gables Museum.
Important note: Doors will open for general admission at 6:30 PM. The program will begin at 7:30 PM, and seating will be unassigned. We expect the program to conclude at 9:00 PM. Afterwards, attendees will have free access to “Concrete Paradise” until 10:30 PM.