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Who to Thank for Jimmy Buffett’s Illustrious Career

April 19th, 2010


In today’s Miami New Times, music industry veteran Lee Zimmerman writes about his part in helping Jimmy Buffett’s young career:

While Jimmy Buffett was a relative unknown around the rest of the country, he was already a fairly big name in Florida, so it became incumbent upon me to build some local airplay for “Margaritaville” — the first single off his Changes In Latitudes, Changes in Attitudes album. Fortunately, it was one of those rare occasions where some normally conservative stations agreed to give an untested record airplay practically out of the box. Being that he was now considered a native son, and that his lyrics about blown out flip-flops and soothing concoctions aptly reflected the state’s sunnier side, access to their charts seemed appropriate.

Soon, stations from Miami to Jacksonville, and practically everywhere in-between, were blasting the song in heavy rotation, giving impetus to other radio stations across the country to also give it a spin. On May 7, 1977, “Margaritaville” cracked Billboard’s top ten, and Buffett was a big star, one who could finally claim hit-making credentials. And I became a hero in my own right, having launched a chart-topper and helped create a new cash cow. A few weeks later, UPS delivered a plaque to my house — a “gold record” signifying sales of more than a million copies of the album, boasting my name as the object of the label’s gratitude.

Read the entire article here.


Tagged in Albums, In The News