At the New Orleans Jazz Fest on Thursday, Jimmy Buffett demonstrated that before "Margaritaville," "Come Monday" and "Changes In Latitudes, Changes in Attitudes" were singalongs, they were songs. He and a skeleton crew returned those and more to their original, mostly acoustic, form at the Fair Grounds.
The unplugged Buffett replaced Pearl Jam frontman Eddie Vedder, who could not perform with his ukulele as scheduled because of a nagging back/arm injury. On April 1, Jazz Fest producer Quint Davis attended his longtime buddy Buffett's free Woldenberg Park performance with the Coral Reefer Band during the NCAA Men's Final Four basketball festivities.
Needing to stretch the show, Buffett banged out an unscheduled solo acoustic interlude. Davis subsequently recruited him to expand that unplugged moment into a full Jazz Fest set.
An unabashed fan of New Orleans in general and the Saints in particular, Buffett has headlined the festival numerous times. In 2011, he was featured on the souvenir poster, and played to the year's largest crowd.
Born in Pascagoula, Miss., and raised in Mobile, Ala., his Gulf Coast roots run deep. In 1967, while still a student at the University of Southern Mississippi in Hattiesburg, he landed a gig at the now-defunct Bayou Room in the 500 block of Bourbon Street. He also occasionally strummed an acoustic on the streets of the French Quarter.
His Thursday show was in that spirit. Seated center stage, surrounded by an arsenal of stringed instruments, Buffett showed up for work barefoot, in shorts, a purple polo shirt, sunglasses and a baseball cap. At his side was Mac McAnally, a member of the Coral Reefer Band and an acclaimed country songwriter and instrumentalist. Lafayette's Sonny Landreth, another frequent collaborator, alternated electric and acoustic slide on some songs; a percussionist also helped out.原帖地址: Jimmy Buffett Info http://www.buffettinfo.com/front-page-news/5554-buffett-debutes-new-song-serpentine-jazz-fest.html#post7620
With the Coral Reefer Band, he generally closes out a Saturday at Jazz Fest. There was far more available real estate at the Acura Stage for the unplugged, weekday Buffett show than last year's fully amped, weekend show. He reveled in the change in latitude, if not attitude: "It's great to be playing 'locals Thursday'!"原帖地址: Jimmy Buffett Info http://www.buffettinfo.com/showthread.php?p=7620
Noting that "we're playing a home game tonight," he sprinkled his set with references to Werlein's, Morning Call, Cochon, Frenchmen Street and his pal Sean Payton. "This is where it all started. New Orleans was my Paris before I got to Paris."
Gazing at the guitars surrounding him, Buffett quipped, "This is like being at Cochon and trying to figure out what you're going to get off the menu."
Feeling loose, he altered Hank Williams' "Hey Good Looking" the way Kermit Ruffins might: "Hey good lookin', what you been smokin'/How about rollin' something up for me?"
He exhumed "The Wino and I Know," the first song he wrote in New Orleans. It was preceded by a "senior moment," in which he forgot to swap his six-string guitar for a 12-string, to match McAnally's. "It's not Pearl Jam," Buffett cracked, "but it's as close as we can come." (Later, he wished Eddie Vedder a speedy recovery.) A new composition called "Serpentine" made its world premiere at Jazz Fest. It celebrated Mardi Gras with an ambling, bluesy arrangement: "Two weeks out of the year, it's all about sin....count me in."
Looking at the sky, he noted that "we're pouring our hearts out on songs it took us 40 years to write, and circling above us is a Larry Flynt Hustler Club airplane. That is New Orleans." (Actually, the plane's banner advertised Tropical Isle, but close enough - both are on Bourbon Street.)
"Changes in Latitudes" slipped into Allen Toussaint's "Fortune Teller." Left alone with an acoustic, Buffett rendered "Come Monday" and a "different kind of love song," aka "Why Don't We Get Drunk and Screw." "I'm glad it still comes back to a guitar and a couple songs."
The others returned for "Volcano," only to leave Buffett alone again for "A Pirate Looks at 40." He's aged out of the song's references. After the line "I go for younger women," he ad-libbed, "They're ALL younger."
Buffett always seems like he's getting away with something, and knows it. During "Margaritaville," he inserted a verse about his tumble off an Australian stage last year, and another about the Saints' bounty scandal. "Some people say that Sean Payton's to blame," he sang, grinning, "but I know it's all Roger Goddell's fault."
Though running late, he and his bare-bones crew returned for an encore of "Last Man Standing." "Even though he's sitting down," McAnally said by way of introduction, "he's the last man standing."
And even though he's sitting down, he's still very much Jimmy Buffett.