Photos by: Greg Walkowiak
Review by: Cheryl
It’s official-I have become a die-hard Jimmy Buffett fan. And I mean in the most extreme case; if there was a “Republic of Buffett”, I would reside there. We arrived at the Comcast Center in Mansfield, Ma. at about 3:00 P.M. on a sweltering Saturday afternoon. Although it was five hours before the show, the festivities had long started. The lot was a sea of Hawaiian shirts, parrot hats, grass shirts, leis and coconut bras-no gender specification necessary for the aforementioned attire.
Set aside the music-as long-time Buffett followers can already tell you, the music is an added perk. Once you set foot on that lot, you are enveloped by the essence and atmosphere of Jimmy Buffett. The mood is light and breezy, uninhibited, and “spirited”-interpret that last adjective any way you’d like….
The aura that Jimmy Buffett quite successfully exudes is quite simple-infinite vacation. As it is so perfectly penned in “Changes in Latitudes”-“ Through all of the islands and all of the highlands, If we couldn’t laugh we would all go insane”. Unless you are a lover of cynicism, there is no possible way you can leave a Jimmy Buffett concert without feeling a bit “lighter”. He can turn any venue into a weekend get-a-way with his very presence.
The summer air was hot and oppressive when Mr. Buffett walked on stage with his band, wearing shorts, a cotton tee shirt (which after the first set was replaced by a “Boston Strong” shirt), and bare feet. He opened with “Kinja” and we were instantly sailing the high seas under a cerulean sky.
He conversed with the crowd like long- time friends, acknowledging the parking lot galas with a proud “that’s some SERIOUS tail-gating out there”!!! The audience responded in thunderous applause. He segued from older favorites like, “Cheeseburger in Paradise”, “Too Drunk to Karaoke” and “Come Monday”, to more recent selections from his newest CD, “Songs from St. Somewhere”.
The acoustic set brought the band in folding chairs front and center with the crowd, belting out one of the most impressive covers of “Southern Cross” that I have ever heard.
He performed for nearly three solid hours, performing all of our familiar favorites and the occasional surprise cover-such as Lionel Richie’s “All Night Long”. “Margarataville” was performed during the first encore and the show concluded with “Fins”-always well received and a true crowd pleaser. As the saying goes, “all good things must come to an end” and the Buffett entourage packed up to turn another venue into a tropical rapture. After all, it’s 5 o’clock somewhere…..
Photos by: Greg Walkowiak