In 2008, Aftermath was on vacation in France. We decided to catch a show of the Spaghetti Western Orchestra
, who had a month-long performance residency at a tiny theater in the Bastille neighborhood of Paris. The band is an Australian quintet that performs the music of Ennio Morricone and other Italian Western composers, along with vaudevillian slapstick.
Their audience was entirely French, save for Aftermath and our significant other, and so, when the SWO made a non-sequitur joke about Jimmy Buffett in French, Aftermath wondered if maybe something was lost in the translation. Was there some secret Parisian thing
about Buffett, you know, like the stereotype that all the French love Jerry Lewis?
After the show, we were waiting in line to buy a CD from the band. Some dude in front of us was taking a long time chatting up the drummer when Aftermath's significant other started pounding his elbow into our ribs and pointing. The leisurely man in front of us was none other than Jimmy Buffett. Suddenly the joke made sense. The best part of the story is that Buffett was wearing a black beret and a black turtleneck. No wonder we didn't recognize him.
Seeing Buffett so out of context reminds us of all that we appreciate about the king of the Parrotheads. And though he's never found much critical success, plenty of other people appreciate him too. He's built an entire empire out of his beach-bum lifestyle, from books to bars to even a line of Margaritaville-brand shoes. And his concerts, like Thursday night's at the Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion, almost always sell out.