Back Cover
    Inner Artwork

      Released: June 4th, 1996
      Label: MCA Records
      Chart Peak: #4 Billboard 200

          1. Only Time Will Tell
          2. Jamaica Mistaica
          3. School Boy Heart
          4. Banana Wind (instrumental)
          5. Holiday
          6. Bob Robert’s Society Band
          7. Overkill
          8. Desdemona’s Building A Rocket Ship
          9. Mental Floss
          10. Cultural Infidel
          11. Happily Ever After (Now And Then)
          12. False Echoes (Havana 1921)
          13. Treetop Flyer (hidden track)

          Jimmy’s Note:

          I was born and raised on the shores of the Northern Gulf of Mexico, which runs from Perdido Bay on the Florida, Alabama border (just east of the Flora Bama Bar) to the Pearl River that separates Mississippi from Louisiana. To most folks, it is about as far south as you can go without getting your feet wet. To me it is the northern edge of the Caribbean. The night sky and constellations above Pascagoula look pretty much the same as those above Martinique. The culture that came with the early French explorers was cradled in New Orleans but flowed East and West permeating the bayous, beaches and bays that make up the unique region.

          New Orleans is the mother city of the region, and it was there, not on a distant palm lined stretch of beach, that I had my first Caribbean experience. It did not come to me in dreams or stories, but in the simple stalk of a banana tree growing and flourishing along side live oaks and slash pine in the sandy soil of a French Quarter garden. The banana tree seemed so out of place, and then again it wasn’t. It was a discovery as fascinating to a ten year old boy as the Galapagos must have been to Darwin. It was not the tree itself, but the place from which it had come that set me to day dreaming and thinking about the tropics.

          Song lines are those mythical highways so wonderfully described by Bruce Chatwin in his book. They are truly mysterious in origin, direction and length, but they are there. You only have to exercise your imagination to find them.

          Banana Wind is an island term. It is also the path of my song line. It is a wind not as dangerous as a hurricane but strong enough to blow the bananas off the trees. It comes out of Africa like a rhythm and gumbo riding across the South Atlantic on the Equatorial Current to Martinique & Guadeloupe where it turns towards Hispaniola and the Bahamas until it reaches Florida. There it leaves Key West and does a big hundred and eighty degree turn along the oval shaped shores of the Gulf of Mexico from Cedar Key to Pascagoula to Isla Mujeres, then rides the Gulf Stream north along the eastern seaboard through the coastal hamlets of St. Augustine, Charleston and Sag Harbor until it is pushed East by Nantucket and Nova Scotia and carves a warm path through the frigid waters of the North Atlantic until it washes ashore in Dingle Bay where banana trees also grow.

          This collection of songs is just a continuation of my story. Stories of ships and sailors, life and death, women and children, love and friendship, seaplanes and paradoxes. Who I am and how I got here and where I am going are the questions whose answers have yet to be written, but the clues are the songs. I know the secrets of some, others I do not. They just appear like a barnacle encrusted bottle with a mysterious message inside, washed up on a deserted beach hiding in the sand, or they can be found in the secret gardens of the French Quarter waiting for the next young dreamer to come along and stake a claim.

          – Jimmy Buffett. Key West, Florida. March 11th, 1996