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Times-Picayune Review of Jazz Fest

May 3rd, 2008

The New Orleans Times-Picayune’s Keith Spera has a review of Saturday’s Jazz Fest show: “Jimmy Buffett and NOJO close out Saturday”

Say what you will about Buffett and his music: The man knows how to work a Jazzfest crowd. That he appears to be having as much, if not more, fun as anyone is key.

In his final 40 minutes, he broke down “Come Monday” to acoustic guitar and steel drums; showcased a singer he met in a bar on an African island; led the most exquisitely un-P.C. sing-a-long “Why Don’t We Get Drunk and Screw?”; and cut loose Lafayette slide guitarist ace and frequent Buffett collaborator Sonny Landreth on “Southern Cross” and a grunged-up version of Landreth’s own “U.S.S. Zydecomobile.”

That’s when the party really got started. Buffett spotted an audience member wearing a T-shirt that read, “Helping Rebuild New Orleans one margarita at a time.” “I will trade you these flip-flops,” Buffett said, pointing at his own feet, “for that T-shirt.” Recognizing a one-of-a-kind Jazzfest souvenir when offered one, the guy accepted. Buffett immediately donned his new, slightly too big, “funky” T-shirt and kicked off the audience participatory “Fins.”

Buffett had one final surprise: Accompanied only by Allen Toussaint on the electric piano, he sang “Do You Know What It Means To Miss New Orleans” as the sun set on Jazzfest. “It’s hard work leading a band on a Saturday night,” Buffett had said earlier. He makes it look easy.

Moments after the set ended, Jazzfest security stopped pedestrian traffic on the dirt track. A convoy of vehicles sped from the Acura backstage area. Buffett himself hung out of the passenger window of the lead SUV. His fans cheered as he passed within high-five distance on his way out of the Fair Grounds — he waved and yelled back at them.

Read the entire review here.

See more photos from the 2008 New Orleans Jazz Fest in our Photo Gallery.

Tagged in Concerts, In The News, Photos