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Jimmy Buffett

Jimmy Buffett translated his easygoing Gulf Coast persona into more than just a successful recording career — he expanded into clothing, nightclubs, and literature — but the basis of the business empire that kept him on the Fortune magazine list of highest-earning entertainers was his music. Born in southern Mississippi and raised in Alabama, Buffett moved to Nashville to try to make it in country music in the late '60s. After signing to the Barnaby label, he released one album, 1970's Down to Earth, from which the socially conscious single "The Christian?" suggested he might be more at home protesting in Greenwich Village. (Barnaby "lost" his second album, High Cumberland Jubilee, though they would find it and release it after he became successful.) Instead, the songwriter moved to Key West, FL, where he gradually evolved into the beach-bum character and developed the tropical folk-rock style that would endear him to millions.

Signing to ABC-Dunhill Record (later absorbed by MCA), Buffett achieved notoriety but not much else with his second (released) album, White Sport Coat and a Pink Crustacean (1973), which featured a song called "Why Don't We Get Drunk" ("...and screw?" goes the chorus). Buffett revealed a more thoughtful side on Living and Dying in 3/4 Time (1974), with its song of marital separation "Come Monday," his first singles-chart entry. But it took the Top Ten song "Margaritaville" and the album in which it was featured, 1977's Changes in Latitudes, Changes in Attitudes, to capture Buffett's tropical world view and, for a while, turn him into a pop star.

By the start of the '80s, Buffett's yearly albums had stopped going gold, and he briefly tried the country market again. But by the middle of the decade, it was his yearly summer tours that were filling his bank account, as a steadily growing core of Sun Belt fans he dubbed "Parrotheads" made his concerts into Mardi Gras-like affairs. Buffett launched his Margaritaville line of clothes and opened the first of his Margaritaville clubs in Key West. He also turned to fiction writing, landing on the book bestseller lists.

His recording career, meanwhile, languished, though a hits compilation sold millions; a 1990 live album, Feeding Frenzy, went gold; and a 1992 box-set retrospective, Boats, Beaches, Bars, and Ballads, became one of the best-selling box sets ever. Buffett finally got around to making a new album in 1994, when Fruitcakes became one of his fastest-selling records. It was followed in 1995 by Barometer Soup and Banana Wind in 1996. The following year, Buffett began working on a musical adaptation of Herman Wouk's novel Don't Stop the Carnival with the author himself. After Broadway producers expressed little interest, the production ran for six weeks in Miami during 1997. In spring of 1998, Buffett released a collection of songs from the production as he began mulling over the idea of taking the play on the road. In 1999 he released Beach House on the Moon as well as Live: Tuesday/Thursday/Saturday.

During the first few years of the millennium, Buffett's newly launched Mailboat label issued close to a dozen concert recordings, as well as the 2002 studio album Far Side of the World. Two years later, Buffett allowed RCA to distribute his second Mailboat studio album, License to Chill. Live albums recorded in Hawaii and Boston appeared in 2005, followed by an all-new collection of songs called Take the Weather with You in 2006 and two more live sets, Live in Anguilla in 2007 and Feeding Frenzy: Live in 2008. In 2009, Buffett released Buffet Hotel, his first new studio album in years.


Buffett was born in Pascagoula, Mississippi, and spent part of his childhood in Mobile, Alabama. He is the son of Mary Lorraine (née Peets) and James Delaney Buffett, Jr. In grade school years, he attended St. Ignatius School, where he played the trombone in the school band. He later lived in Fairhope, Alabama, mentioned by him as his "Home Town" during a 2001 concert. He graduated from McGill Institute for Boys (now McGill-Toolen Catholic High School) in 1964. He began playing guitar during his freshman year at Auburn University before continuing his college years at Pearl River Community College and The University of Southern Mississippi in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, where he received a bachelor's degree in history in 1969. He was initiated into the fraternity Kappa Sigma (ΚΣ) at the University of Southern Mississippi. After graduating from college, Buffett worked as a correspondent for Billboard magazine in Nashville, breaking the news of the separation of Flatt and Scruggs.

Buffett married Margie Washichek in 1969; they divorced in 1972. Buffett and his second wife, Jane (née Slagsvol) have two daughters, Savannah Jane and Sarah Delaney, and an adopted son, Cameron Marley, and reside in Sag Harbor, New York. They separated in the early 1980s but reconciled in 1991. Buffett also owns a home in St Barts, a Caribbean island where he lived on and off in the early 1980s while he was part-owner of the Autour de Rocher hotel and restaurant. He spends part of the summer traveling about the East Coast on his sailboat. An avid pilot, Buffett's flagship plane is a Dassault Falcon 900 that he often uses while on concert tour and traveling worldwide. He has also owned a Boeing Stearman, Lake Amphibian and Grumman Albatross.

His father died May 1, 2003 at the age of 83. His mother died a few months after her husband, on September 25, 2003.


James William "Jimmy" Buffett (born December 25, 1946 in Pascagoula, Mississippi) is a singer, songwriter, author, businessman, and recently a movie producer.
Aside from his career in music, Buffett is also a best-selling writer and is involved in two restaurant chains named after two of his best known songs, "Cheeseburger in Paradise",and "Margaritaville."
Of the over 30 albums Jimmy Buffett has released, as of October 2007, he has 8 Gold Albums and 9 Platinum or Multi Platinum Albums.

 

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