By Ken Jenkins
Back to the pictures.
Well I was headed to Atlanta to experience my 50th Buffett concert! Life is good! Little did I know how good it was going to get! Not only was I going to experience Buffett concerts #49 and #51 at Atlanta's Lakewood Amphitheatre, but unbeknownst to me, Buffett concert #50 would be at the intimate setting of the small Variety Playhouse in Atlanta along with Mac McAnally! What a 50th!!
Anyway, now that I've already spilled the beans -- here's the details. Me and a few other members of the Washington Area Parrot Head Club headed down to Atlanta to see Jimmy's concerts at Lakewood Amphitheatre. We were not disappointed. One thing I can definitely say about Atlanta, is they know how to party! We were in the parking lot both days well before noon, and the party was already rockin' and rollin'. Other than the beach, I don't think I've ever seen so much sand! Then there was the full size outdoor swimming pool. I'm talking a real pool, not the blow-up variety. The fire department was nice enough to bring in a water truck and fill it up!
I had one major obstacle in front of me though -- I didn't have any tickets, and no one was selling on Thursday. So I decided to go up to the ticket windows and try and get some seats that were hopefully going to be released by the time the ticket window opened. There were about half a dozen people already in line, so I fueled up and went to join them. We were all discussing the usual things, like for instance why the hell there are no ticket windows open at 6:00pm, Buffett concert stories, and other general stuff. I can't remember how the conversation got started, but I started conversing with this really nice lady and young man next to me. They would probably have an extra ticket I could buy from them. I thought that was pretty cool. The young man introduced himself and the lady. Turns out I'm talking to Lucy Buffett and one of her restaurant employees!! In case you don't know who Lucy Buffett is, she's Jimmy's sister! She owns a restaurant in Alabama. Lucy and some other people, including Jimmy's mom, had been flown to Atlanta in one of Jimmy's jets for the show. She said she usually only goes to about 1 or 2 shows a year, but she really loves it. It was hard, but I totally tried to control myself and not ask a bunch of stupid questions. We conversed for a while, took some pictures, and then I told her it was taking all my willpower to act completely calm, and she commented that I was doing a very good job. I must say, Lucy is a very nice, down to earth lady. I really enjoyed her company. She didn't stay too long. Her employee remained there with me until the ticket window finally opened. I guess she probably had her own tickets. The ticket ended up being 14th row -- not too shabby.
I also had one other streak of luck that night. I ran into a guy inside the concert that I had been waiting in line with for tickets. I then told him that the lady in line with us was Lucy Buffett (I was the only one that knew). He was surprised and kinda laughed and said he had been holding out on me too. Turns out he had a pass to the backstage pre-concert party. So he let me use it and I went back for a few minutes before the concert and enjoyed some goodies. No Jimmy there though.
Well I guess I could go on and on about the parking lot scene, but I'll save myself some typing and just let you look at the picts from Atlanta that I have on this web site. I met lots of cool people as always and had a great time. Captain Jim, who is webmaster for the JimmyDreamz web site was in town for the Saturday show with his crew. I believe there were about 15 of them. The Atlanta Parrot Head Club and the Lake Lanier Parrot Head club both had impressive setups for both concerts. I did see one thing I don't believe I have seen before -- a blender with a weedeater engine attached! Definitely some great parrothead ingenuity at work there.
As far as the shows themselves, I can't think of anything that really stood out from the rest of the shows. There was a very pleasant set list change. On Saturday Jimmy played Peanut Butter Conspiracy, which was really cool. And, he finally played my favorite song from Beach House On The Moon -- Semi-True Stories.
On the Friday between shows, we heard Jimmy was going to be on CNN at 1:30, so, being in Atlanta where CNN is located, we figured we go down to CNN Center and see if we might see Jimmy around. We watched the interview, which was pretty standard stuff, at a bar in CNN Center. After it was over we went out into the huge atrium area to see if Jimmy would be coming through. Well lo and behold about 15 minutes later, guess who walks through the area?? Jimmy walked out of the studios toward an elevator. We kept our distance though, not wanting to disturb him. We noticed the elevator only went up, so we figured we'd hang out a while to see if he came back down. Sure enough, about 15 minutes or so later, Jimmy pops out of the elevator. I snapped a quick photo from a distance, but didn't wanna bother Jimmy. We were then ready to leave, so we figured we'd leave using the door Jimmy used. One shocked parrot head saw Jimmy and got a picture with him. I don't think she knew he was supposed to be in the building. It was just a chance encounter for her. Jimmy then said "I gotta go", so we didn't pursue a picture. Nevertheless it was pretty cool seeing Jimmy at the CNN Center after the interview.
After the CNN experience, it was time to go to the Braves game. We waited about an hour in line in the hot sun to get $1 tickets, which actually weren't that bad. We stayed until about the 4th inning and then headed on to Mac McAnally's show at the Variety Playhouse in Atlanta, where of course we ran into Jimmy again and had the pleasure of seeing Jimmy in an intimate setting. Click here to read all about it and see the pictures.
Till the next stop for '99...........