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Low G Aquila String Review

Low G Aquila String Review

Low G Aquila String Review.  I received a low G Aquila string in the mail a couple of weeks ago to try on my Eddy Finn ukulele. Ukuleles are generally strung with a high G string (in the progression of GCEA strings), but the low G string is an octave lower.

Edyy Finn uke set up with low G

I put the low G Aguila string on my Eddy Finn Spruce ukulele (spruce top/mahogany back and sides). The Eddy Finn Spruce ukulele is sometimes referred to as a “guitar player’s ukulele”. My Eddy Finn uke has a great look with a nice cutaway and its coloring is similar to my Martin acoustic guitar. It also has a pickup so that I can play it with our band (Parrot Island Band; a Trop Rock/Jimmy Buffett tribute band in Atlanta, Georgia). While many traditionalists are not fans of pickups in ukuleles, the one that Eddy Finn uses provides a great sound for the types of events we play (maybe another trait that guitarists find appealing?).

So how does the low G string setup sound?  The traditional tuning (high G,CEA) provides a brighter sound that is usually associated with the ukulele. With the low G tuning, the ukulele has a lower top end sound (more bass sounding).

Some people say that the low G string makes the ukulele sound more like a guitar (making it a great compliment to the Eddy Finn Spruce ukulele). In playing with the low G set up, I’m not sure I would say it sounds more like a guitar… but it does set the ukulele up to play more like a guitar with the strings going from low (G) to high (A). This also gives more notes on the lower end and a more ‘mellow” sound (you can find a more in-depth discussion on the topic here).

How do I like the low G setup? I think it sounds great! I also picked up an Eddy Finn Bamboo uke (I’ll share some thoughts on this beauty in another blog post J) that I will keep as my high G string setup. One lesson I learned in trying out the low G string… don’t be afraid to experiment!

While I’m at it, stop by and check out the Eddy Finn Spruce Tenor giveaway at www.eddyfinnukes.com … running now until October 31stThis message brought to you by Bry Harris, an Eddy Finn Ukulele Ambassador (endorsing artist/musician) 😉

 

Beaches and blessings,

Bry

Apology Accepted

Apology Accepted

Apology accepted.  I received an apology on Saturday that I gladly accepted. We (the Parrot Island Band, a Jimmy Buffett tribute/cover band from Atlanta, Georgia) were playing for a community event in Roswell, Georgia. It was a pretty easy event, as gigs go; we were set up between a few vendors and played as people passed by.

There were a couple of musicians playing after us and one of them was listening carefully during a couple of our ukulele songs. When we were putting up our equipment, this musician said, “Please don’t take this the wrong way, but I owe you an apology….” I was wondering what he had to apologize for since I didn’t know him…. He continued, “I have always thought of the ukulele as a toy and after listening to you guys play, I realize that I was wrong!” We spent several minutes talking about the ukulele and where he might pick one up. (Of course, I recommended Uke Republic…a great group over there to help you figure out which ukulele you need.)

This is serious fun

What a great compliment. As the Eddy Finn “Ukulele Ambassador” (endorsing musician), I love telling people about Eddy Finn Ukes… and I also have fun playing a really neat instrument.

When people think of the ukulele, many remember Arthur Godfrey from the 1950’s or Tiny Tim from the 1960’s and think of the ukulele as either an instrument used long ago or as a prop for a novelty act. The truth is that the ukulele is an instrument that many musicians play today and it is currently riding a wave of popularity.

Some who play the ukulele today are Paul McCartney, Eddie Vedder (rock) and Michael McDonald If you ever want to hear an incredible ukulele player, just check out Jake Shimabukuro. Of course, I would be amiss if I didn’t mention that Jimmy Buffett also plays ukulele from time to time in his shows.

Parrot Island Ukulele Eddy Finn

Although it was a pretty quiet day in Roswell, I felt like I had changed someone’s perspective about the ukulele and that is a great feeling. If you live in the Atlanta area (we do travel some with enough notice), maybe you would like to relax and enjoy some Parrot Island Band music. With steel pan, ukulele/guitar and congas, you can count on us taking you to a “happy place”… AND we are affordable (we don’t call ourselves “Jimmy Buffett on a budget” for nothing).  🙂  

Beaches and blessings,

Bry

Old Man and the Sea

 

Old Man and the Sea

Old Man and the Sea. They say that “a picture is worth a thousand words”, so I’ll keep this post short.:) This picture was taken a few weeks ago while we (the Parrot Island Band, a Jimmy Buffett Tribute Band from Atlanta, Georgia) were in St. Augustine, Florida. We played as part of the A1A Beaches Parrot Head Club’s Beach Bash event.

Bry Harris play Eddy Finn Ukele to relax

As you can tell by the smile on my face, I love sitting on the beach… I also love playing my Eddy Finn Ukulele (or uke for short).  What better than to combine the two and sit by the ocean, reflect on the beauty and play a few songs… I did… as Jimmy Buffett sings, “I want to go back”… “Someday, I will”…

Beaches and blessings

Honey I Shrunk My Guitar!

Honey, I Shrunk My Guitar!

If you have been following the Parrot Island Band lately you will see me (Bry) with a lot of pictures holding a ukulele (sometimes called uke). At some point during our gigs, I will usually say something to the affect that my favorite guitar was left out in the rain and Linda tossed it in the dryer… causing it to shrink. 🙂

Bry Harris loves his Eddy Finn Uke a Trop Rock Favorite

My very first guitar was an Epiphone Nylon String/Classical guitar. At the age of twelve, I was given my guitar and a few group lessons at the local YMCA. We also had a “bluegrass club” at high school where students taught each other songs by groups such as the Eagles, James Taylor and yes, Jimmy Buffett (to name a few).  [Yeah, I know these aren’t bluegrass musicians, but that’s the only way we could get together and play the songs we liked.] Beyond the YMCA and friends at school, I have found many excellent musicians over the years who were willing to share their talent and musical knowledge…thanks!

While I have had numerous guitars over the years, I have always enjoyed the sound and feel of the nylon string guitar. About a year ago, I picked up a ukulele while in a local music store and enjoyed the similar sound that the ukulele makes to that found in the nylon string guitar (a little more mellow and strings that are a little easier on the fingers).

I have found the ukulele to be a very relaxing instrument. It has been said that you can’t play a sad song on the ukulele. I am not sure if that is true but I know that playing the ukulele usually puts me in a good mood.

Parrot Island Band plays Eddy Finn Ukulele

The ukulele is easy to take with you when you are traveling and a great instrument to have in the office. I keep one at home and one at work, often pausing for a few minutes to relax and play a song or two before getting back to whatever project is in front of me. The ukulele is also a great instrument to have with you when sitting at the beach. 🙂 While at St. Augustine Beach last week, I had a great time sitting beside the ocean and playing some relaxing uke music.

Jimmy Buffett Tribute band Trop UKES

While I would have said a few months ago that I was a guitar player who dabbled in ukuleles, I now feel more like a ukulele player who plays a little guitar. I still have a lot to learn about playing the ukulele and it will take continued playing until it feels as natural as playing the guitar. That being said, I am glad to have added to the ukulele to my life.

As an added bonus to having picked up the ukulele, I have also become an official “endorsing artist/musician” for the Eddy Finn Ukulele Company. The Eddy Finn Ukes are not only great sounding instruments but they are reasonably priced for the average person. Add a “fin” to the sound hole and market it as a ukulele for those who love islands and beaches… and you have a perfect match between the Eddy Finn Ukulele and the Parrot Island Band (a Trop Rock -Jimmy Buffett tribute trio from Atlanta, Georgia).

Looking for a new instrument to learn? Why not consider the ukulele (and an Eddy Finn Ukulele at that)? Affordable. Highly portable. The ladies love them (OK, I can’t speak for ALL ladies, but my wife, Linda, and this really cute three year old at our last gig think they are cool). Easy to learn to play. Relaxing and…FUN! What are you waiting for? Put on your flip flops and go get a ukulele!!

Beaches and blessings

Toes In the Sand

Toes in the Sand

Toes in the Sand…. Not only are these words part of a great Zac Brown song, but it is also the name of a great little ukulele store in Flagler Beach, Florida.  I dropped in on “Capt” Rob Plympton this past week during our (the Parrot Island Band) time at A1A Beaches Parrothead Club’s  Beach Bash” .  Rob took some time to show us this great store, one that sells sandals, flip flops, and some cool ukuleles! (address: 819 N Oceanshore Blvd., Flagler Beach, FL 32136 phone 386-283-1996)

Bry visits Capt Rob and Trop Rock Ukulele shop

Parrot Island Band visists Flagler Beach, Florida

As the Eddy Finn “Goodwill Ukulele Ambassador” ;-), I was pleased to see that Rob carries a good number of Eddy Finn Ukuleles, in addition to his other ukuleles and uke supplies.  Rob is also the President of the Phuncoast Parrothead Club and a ukulele player himself (Rob, why didn’t we play a few songs together?  Now, I really do need to go back to visit Toes in the Sand!

Bry Harris has his eye on these Eddy Finn Ukuleles

Toes in the Sand and Toes int he Flip Flops

“Capt” Rob is one of those people I connected with on facebook and finally met in Key West last year.  I always enjoy meeting people like Rob “in person”, and to see him at the ukulele shop was an added treat.  Flagler Beach is also home to our friends Dale and Peach (“From Flagler Beach”) Hench and also Trop Rock musician Capt Nick Nicholson.  (I’m sure you are wondering, but everyone in the Trop Rock world seems to have a cool name like “Key West” Kev, or Capt., or something tropical…)

Let's go sell some Eddy Finns!

Surfs up for the Parrot Island Band

A side note… we (myself, Linda, Kevin and Wendy Garrelts), also visited Finn’s Beachside Restaurant. While not related to Eddy Finn Ukuleles, it was a great place to eat lunch.  With an upper deck overlooking the ocean, it was a perfect place to relax and enjoy a delicious cheeseburger.  Finn’s Restaurant is within walking distance of Capt. Rob’s uke and flip flop shop – be sure to check them out next time you are in the area.

Bry Harris sees Finns everywhere

Flagler Beach home of Dale and Peach

Eddy Finn “Ukulele Ambassador”

Eddy Finn "Ukulele Ambassador"

As some of my friends have seen over the last month or so, I have become an “official” Eddy Finn Ukulele Musician/Endorser. I like to think of myself as an Eddy Finn “Ukulele Ambassador”, spreading the good news and fun sounds of this great line of ukuleles (sometimes refered to as "ukes")….

Bry and his new Eddy Finn Ukulele

While the Parrot Island Band has been playing as a Trop Rock/ Jimmy Buffett tribute band (here in Atlanta, Georgia) for several years now, our sound continues to evolve.  Replacing the drums with congas and getting smaller (moving from 4 piece band to a duo/trio group), we have gravitated to a sound that you might associate with palm trees and island breezes.

Parrot Island Band plays Eddy Finn Ukulele

This year, we have also added the ukulele to the band, as I (Bry) have enjoyed learning to play this fun instrument over the last couple of years. A few months ago, I went to a local ukulele store (Uke Republic) and owner, Mike McQueen showed me around and answered my numerous questions about his store and the dozens of ukuleles that were on the wall.

Parrot Island Band buys their Eddy Finns at Uke Republic

One ukulele that caught my eye in particular was an Eddy Finn Ukulele.  Not only are these ukuleles fun to look at (the sound hole is in the shape of a shark fin, a symbol that is often associated with Jimmy Buffett and his song, “Fins”), but Eddy Finn Ukuleles also have a beautiful tone as well.

The Eddy Finn slogan is “play to your senses”.  They even have a patented smell that leaves you dreaming of a tropical beach somewhere. I ended up buying a Spruce/Tenor Eddy Finn Ukulele that has just come out on the market. This beautiful ukulele has a built in tuner and pickup that has helped me blend in with our other instruments (steel pan and congas).

Linda sporting her Eddy Finn magnet

Since I have already taken my new ukulele to several local gigs, it is time to take it on a road trip. Look for pictures on http://www.facebook.com/ParrotIslandBand  as the Parrot Island Band heads to St Augustine, FL, to play in A1A Beaches Parrot Head Club’s event, “Beach Bash and Volley Ball Tournament”. We will be playing July 14th by the pool from 12-3pm and I (Bry) will have my Eddy Finn Ukulele with me, playing both Jimmy Buffett tunes with an island flavor… but also adding as many Trop Rock originals as we can fit in.

I also look forward to sitting by the beach and strumming on the ukulele…maybe there is a new song to be written as I sit back and enjoy the view…

Bry Harris is Edyy Finn "ukulele ambassador"

 

Beaches and blessings,

A Fun Time at Uke Republic

A Fun Time at Uke Republic

One of my favorite places to visit is now Uke Republic, a cool little ukulele store in Austell, Georgia, (5000 Austell Powder Springs Rd., SW Suite 290, Austell, GA 30106). You can also find Uke Republic online at www.ukerepublic.com. Owner Mike McQueen not only sells beautiful instruments but also takes time to answer questions and share his passion for the ukulele.

Parrot Island Band shops at Uke Republic

(Uke Republic Store)

My first visit to Uke Republic was a treat, as Mike not only greeted me enthusiastically, but had Radio Margaritaville playing in the shop.  Of course, being a part of the Parrot Island Band (a Trop Rock  – Jimmy Buffett Tribute Band here in Atlanta, Georgia), I immediately had a good feeling about Uke Republic :).

Mike McQueen welcomes Bry Harris of the Parrot Island Band

(Mike McQueen and Bry Harris)

Mike took the time to show me the wide variety of ukuleles in his shop and was extremely knowledgeable about ukuleles in general.  Of course, I gravitated to the Eddy Finn Uke that has a fin pattern for a sound hole (for non parrotheads, the fin is a symbol that is widely associated with Jimmy Buffett).  Mike ordered the Eddy Finn model that I like and helped hook me up with a neat little ukulele stand and case.

Bry with his new Eddy Finn Uke

(Bry and his new Eddy Finn Uke)

I’m adding Uke Republic to the list of “stuff parrotheads like”, although this store appeals to musicians who enjoy all styles of music. If you are looking for a place to sit in and play with some other ukulele enthusiasts, ask Mike about the group that meets at Uke Republic regularly to share songs and enjoyment of the ukulele.

At a subsequent visit to Uke Republic, I met Mike’s store partner and wife, Donna.  I enjoy seeing a family owned/run operation with such nice people. Looking for a new ukulele? Or maybe your first one? Drop in (or go online) and get to know the good folks at Uke Republic…  Maybe I’ll see you there!

Uncle Jim Rocks Alabama Elementary School

Uncle Jim Rocks Alabama Elementary School

Uncle Jim (bass player for Jimmy Buffett’s Coral Reefer band) rocks Alabama elementary school with help from a Parrot Island Band lead singer and a Parrothead councilman.

(Today's post is by Derek Raulerson, friend of the Parrot Island Band – a Trop Rock Jimmy Buffett Tribute Band from Atlanta, Georgia.  Derek and Bry met a couple of years ago when the Parrot Island Band played an event for the summer reading program in Jacksonville, Alabama.  Since then Derek and Bry have become good friends and occasional golfing buddies… both share a love of all things Jimmy Buffett).

Jim Mayer hanging out with Bry Harris of the Parrot Island Band

It’s hump day on the mainland and a lot has been going on!  Jim Mayer, known to kids as “Uncle Jim” and to adults as the bass player for Jimmy Buffett’s Coral Reefer Band brought his anti-bullying message (www.unclejimrocks.com) and IM4U program to 818 elementary students with the help of Parrot Island Band Head Parrot Bry Harris.  Bringing Mayer to Kitty Stone Elementary was the result of a few coincidences and the legwork of Councilman & Parrothead  Derek Raulerson, who had dealt with a friend's child’s encounter with a bully at school. The issue was already on his mind when none other than Bry Harris recommended Mayer’s campaign to bring awareness to anti-bullying across the nation. After checking out the program, Raulerson took the idea to Kitty Stone Elementary Principal Christy Hamilton and district administration, ultimately securing $1,500 from the city to pay for the show, which Raulerson said covered Mayer’s expenses.

Derek and Jim looking for Bry and the Parrot Island Band?

Fourth-grader Deandre Sigler said that message was the most interesting part of the program, learning what kids can do to help, “like telling people and reporting it if something’s wrong.” “You need to tell somebody,” Mayer told them. “This is really important because kids all over the country are getting hurt because nobody’s speaking up.” Deandre had never heard of cyber-bullying until Friday, but now he knows to be cautious before “you go online or text someone, and you hurt somebody’s feelings.” Mayer told students that once they hit send, they can’t take it back. A chorus of “Whoa!” met Mayer’s explanation of how something goes viral, of how quickly one message to a friend can turn into 125 quickly.

Conga Line to Parrot Island

A sea of children danced around a man with a guitar and broccoli hat last Friday morning at Kitty Stone Elementary School in Jacksonville, AL, probably not realizing who stood before them.  Those impressionable minds are comparable to sponges soaking up life’s lessons from an entertainer who travels the world bringing us a form of escapism.  Some would say “I don’t know and I don’t care” (Jimmy Buffett/Jim Mayer) but with the help of the coconut telegraph and Bry Harris, Buffett’s bass player was brought to a small town in Northeast Alabama. Isn’t it amazing how our love for tropical climates, cheeseburgers in paradise and Jimmy Buffett can bring us together and make things transpire?  Hope to see you in Atlanta next month for the largest Parrothead gathering in the southeast, we will be the ones under a mango tree!

Jim Mayer can play with Parrot Island Band any time

Phins on the James 2012

Phins on the James 2012

We (the Parrot Island Band- a Trop Rock/Jimmy Buffett tribute band from Georgia) had a great time at a parrothead event, Phins on the James, last week. Having grown up in the Tidewater, VA area (Bry), it was great being in Lynchburg, VA with many wonderful people.

Parrot Island Band at Big Lick Grill

The Parrot Island Band opened the evening at the Big Lick Tropical Grill. We were originally scheduled to play on the outdoor deck but rain caused us to move inside. With 250 or more in attendance, it was a great venue and a superb event.

Parrot Island Band having a Trop Rock evening

The Calypso Nuts followed us and they had the crowd on their feet and dancing at the very first song. As usual, the Calypso Nuts did a marvelous job and are both outstanding musicians and tremendous entertainers (Rob and Lynley, you can send the check or just pay me the next time you see me ;-).

Calypso Nuts close for the Parrot Island Band

One of the many special treats for us was getting to spend some time with “Big Ed” Meyer and Kate Walker-Starr from Island Dreamz Radio. The entire evening was broadcast live on the station, allowing those who couldn’t attend to listen in over the Internet.

Parrot Island Band enjoys visit with Big Ed

Getting back to VA also allowed us a couple of fun personal moments. Kevin Garrelts, our conga player, was able to visit with his brother, Art and sister-in-law Joanne, whom they hadn’t seen in a couple of years. I (Bry) was able to visit with two friends from high school (Burt and Scott Robinson). While Burt and I have kept in touch over the years since high school, I had not seen Scott since his wedding in the early 80’s.

A big thanks to Tom and Nancy Cofer of the Heart of Virginia Parrot Head Club who made it possible for us to play at the event.  To all those who planned this event, you did a GREAT job! Most of us will never know all the work that went into running a superb event. Oh yeah, it was my (Bry’s) birthday and what a wonderful way to spend it!  It was also great seeing our friend from Tidewater, Andy Harrell… hope our paths cross again soon.

I hope I didn’t leave anyone out, it sure was great being with everyone and I hope we get a chance to get together again. Until then, from our song… “Phins on the James”,

“Phins to the left, phins to the right

Phins on the James, at the Big Lick Grill tonight

Phins to the left, phins to the right

Phins on the James, it’s a Parrothead delight”

Thanks to all…

Beaches and blessings…

Will you take me to Parrot Island?

What are YOU good at?

What are YOU good at?

I was talking with some elementary school children this week and I asked them what they were good at. One said “dancing”, another “playing” and after a few more answers, one little girl said confidently, “singing!”

I asked the little girl how she knew she was good at singing. She said she knew she was a good singer because she had fun doing it… what a great answer!

What are YOU good at?

Think of how many adults have quit singing, dancing, painting, etc. because someone told them when they were younger that they weren’t good at it. What if we redefined what success is, as it relates to our hobbies, talents or passions?

Now I’m not suggesting that everyone who enjoys singing should be on American Idol, but we shouldn’t be afraid to pursue activities we enjoy, simply for the joy these activities bring.

Don't Quit listening to Parrot Island Band

I was recently at a conference called the Quitter Conference by Jon Acuff. Jon not only encourages people to follow their dreams but also to leverage their “day jobs” in order to pursue those things we love to do. In some ways, this was a Non-Quitter Conference, as Jon often says, “don’t quit your day job, at least not yet”.

There is a lot to be said for following passions because they are fun, even though they may never pay the bills.  I also wrote in my notebook while at the conference, “approval is terrible fuel for a dream”. Sometimes we give up on our dreams because we aren’t very good at the activities we love… but maybe we could be if we gave these dreams time to develop and our talents time to improve.

After a 25 year break from music, I started playing the guitar again. Before I knew it, I had formed the Parrot Island Band, a Trop Rock/Jimmy Buffett Tribute band near Atlanta, Georgia. We started playing backyard events and if being “really good” was the mark of whether or not we continued (versus the fun we had), we probably would have quit right then.

Bry Harris of the Parrot Island Band

Since those early “gigs”, we have now played at events in Tennessee, Florida, Alabama, North and South Carolina and Virginia. We have played at Cheeseburger in Paradise, for several Jimmy Buffett concert/tailgate events, a National Movie Theatre Manager’s Convention (Carmike Cinemas) and even a minor league baseball game (the Augusta Green Jackets).While we haven't met Jimmy Buffett, we have met most of the Coral Reefer Band and I (Bry) have played a song with Doyle Grisham (Jimmy's Pedal Steel guitar player)

Even with all of this, there is a temptation to compare our band to bigger, better, more successful bands… but I won’t. How do I know that we are really, really good? I know we are really good because we have a LOT of fun (going back to the little girl’s explanation)…

What dreams have you given up on that you would really have fun pursuing? Another quote from the Quitter Conference that spoke to me is, “our dreams may not pay the bills but they may feed our souls”. Wow! Do it (whatever IT is) because you love it and have fun… what a great way to know if you are “good at something”.

“Sidewalk Surfers” are Parrothead friendly.

“Sidewalk Surfers” are Parrothead friendly.

Stuff Parrotheads Like.  If you find yourself at Cool Spring Galleria in Franklin, Tennessee, stop in the Flip Flop Shops and tell Jeff Kent (General Manager) that Bry says hello. While at a recent conference in the area, I wandered into the mall to get out of the cold for a bit (it was 25° outside…brrrrr).  I saw the Flip Flop Shops store and it made me smile as I thought about the warmer months ahead. Next thing I knew, I was making a beeline toward the store…

Stuff Parrotheads like

While I wasn’t in the mood to try on flip flops, Jeff talked me into trying on a pair of Sanuk “Sidewalk Surfers”. “Sidewalk Surfers” are part sandals, part shoes and extremely comfortable.  When a friend from California visited a couple of months ago, he was wearing these types of shoes and I dismissed them as some “California fad”. On my feet, in the Flip Flop Shops, in 25° weather, in Tennessee, these looked totally cool. 🙂

Parrot Island Band approved footware

If you end up in the Flip Flop Shops store in Cool Spring Galleria, be sure to ask for the Parrot Island Band (a Trop Rock Jimmy Buffett Tribute Band from Atlanta, Georgia) discount. I must warn you that Jeff will likely pretend he doesn’t know what you are talking about. Next, ask him for a business card and once he gives it to you, ask him if that card is worth any kind of discount. That should work.

If you see us (the Parrot Island Band) playing this spring or summer, you just might get a glimpse of these comfortable shoes… I mean sandals… um, “sidewalk surfers”. 

 

Trop Rock Buffet

Trop Rock Buffet

“Trop Rock Buffet”.  This is the name of my most recent song (Bry Harris of the Parrot Island Band). As I wrote this song, I pictured myself driving to Key West and being drawn to a little roadside Café/Bar along the way. Even though I can’t tell you where this Café is, I believe I will see it one day and it will be the very one that inspired this song.

While I was the one being welcomed to this Trop Rock Café, I was also the “old man” who had been playing there since 1982 (the year I graduated from Old Dominion University and took a 25 year break from music).  The sign on the roadside to this imaginary Café bids those passing by to slow down and enjoy the journey… something I have been trying to do more of in the last few years.

My answer to the “miracle question”, “What would you do if money were no object?” is this… I would find a little bar or Café by the beach somewhere and play Tropical tunes to a small group of folks who would sit, listen and enjoy just hanging out together.

I’m sure there are many musicians playing in little dives all over the country. For me it is not so much about chasing a dream as much as it is living one. Whether it is a large crowd or a few friends, I really enjoy playing a song that makes someone smile and relax.

So here it is… “Trop Rock Buffet” – a place where you can get a regular diet of Buffett, Beach and Tropical tunes. If you get to that little Café before I do, take a picture and send it to me… make sure to send directions because I’ll get there as soon as I can.

 

Trop Rock Buffet

Verse 1)

I was almost halfway down the road to paradise

I saw a sign that said please drop on in

We know you’ll love the people here and if you like

You can go out back and take a swim…

 

Chorus)

A gentle breeze, a sunny day… it’s a Trop Rock Buffet

Down by the sea, you and me… at the Trop Rock Café

 

Verse2)

The old man in the corner playing Buffett tunes

He’s been playing here since 1982

And if you listen carefully I swear to you

You may never go back home again

 

Chorus)

A gentle breeze, a sunny day… it’s a Trop Rock Buffet

Down by the sea, you and me… at the Trop Rock Café

 

Verse 3)

Well minutes turned to hours and there I was

Trying to decide what I should do

I asked the old man why he stayed for all these years

He shared with me what I now share with you

 

Bridge)

If you see that sign, and you do slow down

Could be the perfect time

Just look what I have found

 

Chorus)

A gentle breeze, a sunny day… it’s a Trop Rock Buffet

Down by the sea, you and me… at the Trop Rock Café

 

A gentle breeze, a sunny day… it’s a Trop Rock Buffet

Down by the sea, you and me… at the Trop Rock Café

 

 

Three Little Birds

Three Little Birds

Don’t worry about a thing.”  While these are words that many people recognize as being from Bob Marley’s song, Three Little Birds, they are also words that are captured throughout the Bible.

 

Jesus said, "Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes?  Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life? And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will He not much more clothe you?” (Matthew 6: 25-30)

There are many things that we worry about… bills, health, jobs, relationships, etc. There are so many things that seem to be out of our control and cause us great anxiety… the words of the apostle Paul remind me that it is not God’s desire for us to worry when he writes, “ Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.  And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:6-7)

As I turn to God for comfort and peace, I often find that my worries are smaller than when I started. I am also reminded that I am not alone and that God’s love is bigger than my worries.

Paul also writes that we are to, “Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you.” (1 Peter 5:7) If you have a lot on YOUR mind today… remember that God loves you and that you are not alone.

Blessings and peace from the Parrot Island Band. May your hearts be filled with songs of joy and love.

Check Out “The Finder”

Check Out "The Finder"

Stuff Parrotheads Like.  There is a new show on FOX, that has a Tropical feel to it… The Finder.  The show is an offbeat detective show that is set in “Looking Glass Key, FL” and in a beat up bar named Ends of the Earth Bar.  Geoff Stults plays Walter Sherman, a detective who is both quirky and talented, often sporting Hawaiian shirts and flip flops.  Stults solves cases in part due to an obsessive compulsive focus (and strangely ingenious) that is related to a brain injury he received while in the military.

Parrot Island Band approved

Stult's “sidekick” is Michael Clarke Duncan who had a breakthrough performance in the movie The Green Mile.  I love Duncan’s character and his deep voice (and he has some incredible muscles). Duncan plays Leo Knox, a gentle giant who is a bit of a home spun philosopher (and legal advisor).

Michael Clarke Duncan digs the Parrot Island Band

The only thing the show is missing so far is a good Trop Rock band and I gladly offer up the Parrot Island Band as a solution.  I could also see Trop Rocker Howard Livingston as a regular on the show or maybe we could take turns bringing Tropical tunes to the show… OK, I digress, the show is definitely worth checking out and hopefully will find an audience before it goes the way of most of the shows I like (long term hiatus or cancellation).

Maybe if enough Parrotheads begin to follow The Finder, the writers will bring Buffett on for an episode and we can finally solve the mystery of Jimmy's "lost shaker of salt"… tune in :)).

Island Time Radio Show Anniversary

Island Time Radio Show Anniversary

Stuff Parrotheads LikeIsland Time Radio Show is celebrating its 12th anniversary this Monday, January 30th.  Hosted by Dennis King (DK the DJ), this show does a great job of playing a mix of both independent Trop Rock musicians and established artists.

When our CD, Parrot Island Getaway came out a few years ago, Dennis was kind enough to play a few songs and have me (Bry from the Parrot Island Band) on the show. When interviewing musicians, Dennis does a good job of putting his guests at ease and  makes the audience feel like they are a part of the show (through emails, internet chat, running Facebook comments, etc).

Island Time Radio with Parrot Island Band

It was great seeing Dennis while in Key West this past November – I always enjoy meeting people in person that I have gotten to know over the Internet (Facebook, interviews, e-mails). Thanks to Island Time Radio and DK the DJ for a great program and happy anniversary from the Parrot Island Band!

In case you haven’t heard, the Island Time Radio Show is heard live on Monday nights from 10 pm to 1 am, Eastern Time on WBWC 88.3 FM (Baldwin Wallace College) in the Cleveland, Ohio area. 

Island Time Radio Show can also be heard on a worldwide webcast at http://www.wbwc.com. The show is repeated on WNY The Shore Radio at http://www.wnyshoreradio.com/ Saturdays – 9 pm, Eastern Time and on Beachfront Radio at http://www.beachfrontradio.com  Wednesdays – 8 pm, Eastern Time.

MidWinter Meltdown Sounds Like Fun

MidWinter Meltdown Sounds Like Fun

Stuff Parrotheads Like.  There is an event that is being held in Virginia this weekend (Jan 27-29) that sounds like a lot of fun.  It is a Parrothead event called MidWinter Meltdown.  The event started 12 years ago and has become one superb event, from what I can tell. The Calypso Nuts, Crawdaddy, John Frinzi, John Patti and several other Trop Rock entertainers will be there to entertain 250-300 crazy Parrotheads… I am sure it will be a great time!

While the Parrot Island Band won’t be at MidWinter Meltdown this year, we will be joining with the Calypso Nuts for another event in Virginia on April 21 (Bry’s birthday!) The event is Phins on the James and you can find out more information by going to the Heart of Virginia Parrothead Club website .

I met a number of the Virginia Parrotheads while in Key West this past November and they are a wonderful group of people! Having grown up in Virginia (Tidewater), I have a soft spot for all things (OK, most things that are related to Virginia:)).

I look forward to being with everyone in April but until then I hope everyone has a great time this weekend… beaches and blessings.

Bry