Parrotheads welcome Buffett to Atlantic City [slideshow]

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  Members of the Jersey Shore Parrot Head Club got a good spot for the show. From left are Kate Newcomer of Brigantine, Steve Petrozza of Glassboro, Lynne Dubler of Stone Harbor, Lisa Westog of Ocean City, Lance and Kathy Landgraf of Ventnor and Beth Zoller of Ocean City. Members of the Jersey Shore Parrot Head Club got a good spot for the show. From left are Kate Newcomer of Brigantine, Steve Petrozza of Glassboro, Lynne Dubler of Stone Harbor, Lisa Westog of Ocean City, Lance and Kathy Landgraf of Ventnor and Beth Zoller of Ocean City.

ATLANTIC CITY - "Build it and I will come," Jimmy Buffett told the 75,000 people who flocked to the beach for a free concert hosted by Resorts Casino Hotel Saturday, June 15.

Andy Grammar opened Salt & Sand Fest at 1 p.m on LandShark Beach at North Carolina Avenue while the crowd stretched to Steel Pier from the boardwalk to the ocean and beyond, where boats were anchored in the surf.

Inspired by Buffett's music and lifestyle, Resorts recently opened the Margaritaville themed casino and restaurant. Buffett could clearly see patrons of LandShark Bar & Grill on the beach from the stage.

"I have found a home," Buffett said.

Buffett joined Coral Reefer Band member Mac McAnally for the second act at 4 p.m. Headlining act, Wilson Phillips, played at 7 p.m. Many devoted fans, dubbed "Parrotheads," were camped out early so their beach chairs could be dug in close to the stage.

Among them were members of the Jersey Shore Parrot Head Club including Kate Newcomer of Brigantine, Steve Petrozza of Glassboro, Lynne Dubler of Stone Harbor Ocean City residents Lisa Westog and Beth Zoller and Lance and Kathy Landgraf of Ventnor.

Since 1999, the group has raised more than $60,000 for local charities and organizations. "Partying with a purpose," Landgraf said.

Two old friends from the Claridge, Jill Alexander of Egg Harbor Township and Patti DeFrancisco of Hammonton got a spot near LandShark Bar for the concert.

"It's nice being out on the beach," Alexander said. "We just wanted to come out and have fun."

McAnally said he was happy to see the Jersey Shore recover after Hurricane Sandy. Being from Mississippi, he said he understands the recovery process before playing, "When the Coast is Clear," a song he co-wrote with Buffett.

"Mississippi and New Jersey aren't that far apart," McAnally told the crowd. "Our hearts go out to you. It brings the whole country back together."

Buffett, who was announced as a special guest performer, joined McAnally during "Back Where I Come From." Between songs he told the crowd how much he was enjoying the show.

"We'll have to do this more often," Buffett said. "I like this latitude," he said before launching into "Changes in Latitudes, Changes in Attitudes."

Buffett dubbed his bandmates; McAnally, Jim Mayer on bass, Peter Mayer on guitar and Roger Guth on drums; all members of his touring Coral Reefer Band, as his "Beatles Band."

Mixed throughout songs and while talking to the crowd, Buffett referenced Atlantic City, Philadelphia and even Brigantine. On stage, McAnally wore a T-shirt from the Windrift Hotel in Avalon.

They played a set of fan favorites including "Margaritaville," "It's Five O'Clock Somewhere," "Grapefruit, Juicy Fruit," "Volcano," "Cheeseburger in Paradise," "A Pirate Looks at 40," "Southern Cross" and "Fins." He played two cover songs that the crowd knew well: "Brown Eyed Girl" and "Under the Boardwalk."

For an encore, Buffett played a third cover, "Another Saturday Night" and a solo acoustic version of "Come Monday."

"We'll be back in Camden before you know it," Buffett said.

Jimmy Buffett and the Coral Reefer Band will play 8 p.m. Tuesday, June 25 at the Susquehanna Bank Center in Camden. See margaritaville.com for information. 

Photos by Shaun Smith


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