Monday, January 18, 2010

It's All About the Music

One of the things that we love so much about Key West is that music is everywhere - and a lot of it is really, really good!!! Blues to bluegrass, rock to "trop rock" (think Buffett and his many wannabes and copycats), jazz to country and pretty much everything in between can be heard streaming out from local open air bars, park bandstands, concert halls and even impromptu sidewalk performances. There is almost always someone playing around town to satisfy every kind of musical taste. The other night we had the unbelievable experience of seeing Peter Mayer perform at the Studios of Key West which is a local center for the arts in the old armory building. Along with 200 other fans, we were treated to an evening of just awesome music - for those of you who don't know who Peter Mayer is, he is the lead guitarist for Jimmy Buffett's Coral Reefer band - but don't let that fool you!!!! The evening was not a knock off of Buffett tunes - Peter is an amazing musician in his own right and when on his own, he sports a more folksy type of music which reflects his early influences of being born in India.

We've seen Peter play before among other places up in New Hampshire when he did a Hurricane Katrina relief concert with our friend Scott Kirby - once again this had a relief aspect to it in that he donated the proceeds of his cd sales to the Haitian relief effort. Our friends Brett and Jill had never seen Peter or really heard of his music outside of Buffett so they were in for a real treat. After a wonderful Cuban dinner at a local hole in the wall cafe (which abound down here and are usually pretty authentic...meaning great food!!),
The Cuban Restaurant
we spent the next 2 1/2 hours listening to Peter's amazing music - he has just come out with a new cd with his brother Jim (also a guitarist in the Coral Reefer band) where he picked his top 15 or so Beatles tunes, dusted them off and gave them a new lease on life (I know this is heresy but I'm not a huge Beatles fan (I was always the rebel who loved the Stones) but even I was blown away by his renditions of their songs!!!)
Peter Mayer at the Studios of Key West
Our friend Scott, fresh off his gig at the Sunset Pier, showed up to play several songs he co-wrote with Peter and the place went wild!!
Peter Sang One Song...
Then Scott Sang a Song

If the night had ended there, it would have been a great evening but as is usual when we're out with Scott, the evening never ends that early (11:00 pm is an early evening down here!!) So off we went for nighttime cocktails at Louie's Backyard (Scott wrote a great song about Louie's called "My Cathedral" since it is this wonderful deck sitting right out over the water close to the southernmost point where you feel so close to the stars you could reach up and grab them!!) Scott and his wife Michelle showed up with some of their friends and you guessed it, Peter!! So we got to hang out with ... well, a real rock star...except that he is one of the nicest and most unassuming guys you could ever hope to meet. Super nice, super talented and gorgeous to boot - sometimes life just isn't fair!! Reinforcements showed up about 12:30 in the form of Tom Weaver and his wife Regan who are down here for race week (we're talking more than serious sailors - can you say America's Cup!) Tom's been down in KW for a week but Regan just pulled in that night after towing their race boat down from the Chesapeake so she was raring to go! We made it to about 1:30 am before reluctantly calling it a night (which after all we thought was pretty darn good especially since we had been out until 1 the night before at the tranny show!!!)

Saturday should have been a day of rest and recovery but there was too much happening around town - so we hopped on our bikes (yes we still don't have Doug's scooter yet...not going there) and headed into the KW Seafood Festival!! We ran into our dockmates John and Shawna and proceeded to have a ball
We Met Up With John and Shawna
- we wandered the local beer and seafood tents sampling the wares (we headed back to the beer tent several times because after all it was a hot day and we wanted to support the local economy (we're the local stimulus package)
We Wandered the Festival with John and Shawna
all the while listening to the cool sounds of a local band (which included Bubba Lowballs - well that's just our nickname for him after we saw much more of him than we ever wanted to on stage at the Wharf one afternoon! - why is it always me huh Bob and Stef???)
We Watched a Local Band Play
What a riot it was to watch the local dogs who were out in force drinking beer from their owners mugs (you regularly see dogs bellied up to the bars around here especially at Schooner Wharf) - ya gotta love KW!!!
This Little Long-hair Chihuahua Was Seen Drinking Beer Earlier
For some reason my picture taking ability seems to have shut down at this point as I realize I have no pictures after this point (I think it was just that I had to put my camera away in my backpack to ride down to the wharf and just forgot about it...yeah, yeah...that's it!) From there we hit happy hour at the Raw Bar down on the wharf - this is a huge find as they have 50 cent oysters and $6 pitchers of Shock Top!!! While imbibing at an outside table we were able to see the Saints game through the window and liked what we saw - John is a Ragin Cajun from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette so it's all about the Saints. I don't think they will ever be called the aints anymore after destroying the Cardinals!!! Go Saints - since the Pats are out, they're my team now - I'm on the bandwagon!!!

That evening we got to connect with DeFever boating friends of ours from Marathon, Robin and Jim Roberts of Adventures. Despite Robin's being slightly under the weather we had a great time catching up with those guys over some tasty Mexican at Salsa Loca to the music of Clint Bullard and the Indy game (we like Robin even though she is a hardcore Giants fan and admits to liking Peyton Manning - ugh - the things you put up with in the name of friendship!!) They were headed back to Marathon and were wonderful enough to toss our fold-up bikes in the trunk and drive us back to the marina - yippee!!! After making plans for many more KW excursions (the tranny show, seeing Scott perform, dinner at our yacht club, etc), we waved goodbye knowing we'd see each other again soon!! When we got back to Gypsies we were hanging out on the docks with the Muircu crowd when John and Shawna rolled in - they actually had to bike home - ugh!!

Sunday was finally a day of rest and relaxation - after all there was football to watch!! Bootsie was in heaven - mom and dad were going to play with her all day!
Bootsie Just Loves Football Day
Despite having to watch the Chargers and the Jets - two of our least favorite teams in the world - we had a great day chilling out, munching good apps and maybe even a coldie or two! Who knows what today will bring although it is the start of race week and we've been invited down to Tom and Regan's boat any evening - maybe we'll take them up on it or just cruise into KW to partake of the race week festivities - decisions, decisions!!!

1 comment:

  1. How fun! Thanks for hangin' with me! -- Clint Bullard