This description of our formation appeared in one of our early newsletters. While some of the references are dated, and Bart has passed away, the story is still as close to the truth as we'll admit.

 

 

We weren't Buffett fans when he first started hitting it big. College and finances didn't allow time or money for extras, like albums, so we didn't follow anyone closely at the time. If it wasn't on the radio, we didn't hear it. Fortunately, JB WAS on the radio a lot in the 70's, so we became very familiar with the basic stuff, the songs you know by heart.

While at that time we didn't know many of his songs, we did share a love of the sea. For vacations, we headed south. After graduation from college, I made sure my first job was on the coast. Even when we later moved to the foothills of the North Georgia mountains, our dreams kept us at the beach.

It was around '88 that we started realizing that Jimmy's songs were so closely aligned with our fantasies. Changes in Latitudes, One Particular Harbor, they all helped satisfy our craving to be beach side. We had one or two CDs and by the time we took a western Caribbean cruise in '90, we knew enough to hum "Lovely Cruise" as the boat came into the harbor.

We were hooked, and bought everything we could afford, and were able to sing along with Jimmy that summer as we attended our first JB concert ever. We had first draw in the lottery, so we had excellent seats. A very great year.

In 1992, an employee heard me talking about having Jimmy Buffett concert tickets and with a grin said her step-father knew someone on Jimmy's crew. Sure, I said, right. She swore it was true. A couple of days later, her step-father came in, introduced himself (BART) and we started talking about Buffett. He brought in his scrapbook, with pictures of him, Fingers, Buffett, Tim Schmidt, and other Reefers.


I guess she was telling the truth.

Bart had tickets lined up for one show that year, but needed tickets for the second show. We worked out a trade, and got one of the biggest treats of our lives: touring backstage, on-stage, and the buses. We watched Jimmy play basketball, talked with Greenidge and Utley, and thought we'd died and gone to heaven. I fell in love with Evangeline. It was a nice time.

Where is Joe Merchant? came out sometime that year, and Jimmy began a book tour, contradicting a previous vow never to do book tours. He came to Atlanta's Symphony Hall, but we didn't know tickets were on sale until late in the day. We still got good seats, but were slightly pissed that we hadn't heard about it earlier. A desire to keep up with what's going on in the world of Bubba planted the first seed of formation of the LLPHC.

For the next year, Bart, his wife Sandy, my wife and I kicked around the idea of starting a PH Club. We thought there might be enough folks in town who liked Buffett. After all, look at the lines when tickets went on sale.

I'd seen the mentions in the CocoTel about Scott Nickerson and the Atlanta Club, so I called him one day for advice. Any doubts or fears I might have had were quickly dispelled by Scott. He was more enthusiastic than a roomful of Amway dealers. With his encouragement, I decided to go ahead with it. My wife said fine, but she wouldn't help.

So, in March of '94, a group of 25-30 folks gathered in the meeting room at what was then Peeches to see what a Parrot Head Club might be. From that, a hard core group went on to meet at Henry O's the next month. So that's how we got started and it's just been getting better.

By the way, my wife did help, a lot, and is a charter member.