Jimmy Buffett Portrait

Jimmy Buffett

Pascagoula, United States

Singer-songwriter Jimmy Buffett is known for his humorous chronicles of a laid-back seafaring life; his philosophical outlook is encapsulated in songs like "Why Don't We Get Drunk (and Screw)" and "My Head Hurts, My Feet Stink, and I Don't Love Jesus." Since then, he has built a small financial empire based in Key West, written several best-selling books, and become a prominent environmentalist.

On December 25, 1946, James William Buffett was born in Pascagoula, Mississippi. Son of James Delaney Buffett and Mary Loriane, he grew up there, attended Auburn University, and later the University of Southern Mississippi, where he specialized in journalism (later working as a Billboard reporter). He moved to Nashville in the late 1960s with the intention of becoming a country singer. His first album, Down to Earth (1970), sold 324 copies. Later, Barnaby Records temporarily misplaced the master tape of his second album before its release.

By 1972, Buffett had left both Nashville and his marriage at the time; that's when he moved to Key West. He signed with ABC-Dunhill, and his 1973 release, "A White Sport Coat and a Pink Crustacean," marked the development of his persona in the industry. Buffett's commercial success came in 1977 with the platinum album Changes in Latitudes, Changes in Attitudes (#12) and its successful single, "Margaritaville" (#8).

During that period, Buffett toured infrequently, spending most of his time living on his yacht, the Euphoria II. He often docked in Montserrat, where his 1979 album Volcano was recorded. He formed the first version of his band, Coral Reefer, in 1975. Buffett also composed and appeared in the 1974 film "Rancho Deluxe" and the 1977 movie FM. His 1981 album, Coconut Telegraph, inspired a fan club newsletter of the same name, which has maintained a subscriber fanbase worldwide.

The 1985 compilation "Songs You Know By Heart" sold two million copies; the 1992 album Boats, Beaches, Bars, & Ballads also achieved platinum status. By that time, Buffett had established an empire with Margaritaville, which included a record label, Margaritaville stores, and cafes in Key West and New Orleans. He also wrote two best-selling books, "Tales from Margaritaville," a collection of short stories, and the novel "Where Is Joe Merchant?" He authored two children's books as well, "The Jolly Man" and "Trouble Dolls," both co-written with his daughter, Savannah Jane.

(from Rolling Stone)

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