Sandlapper ParrotHead Telegraph
Volume III, Number 5
A Charter Club of Parrot Heads in Paradise, Incorporated
Greetings Sandlappers. Well, the big day has come and gone and I don't know about any of you, but I'm still recouping and regrouping. What a night. Thanks to everyone who helped make it a great success. Our tailgate was the talk of the town…and the concert wasn't half bad either.
As we move onward, we have a few things to keep us busy as a club. There are only 2 dates left to work Knight's Castle. This has been a long, but very profitable, summer for us at the Castle and with only 2 dates left, I'm sure we can drum up enough support from the phlock to make it through. Our reward will be our 3rd Annual Endless Carnival Party at the Commodore Yacht Club on Lake Wylie September 30th. We have expatriated SPHC member and Hilton Head resident Erik Smith signed up to open the evening's entertainment with the Caribbean Cowboys of Asheville headlining the party. Anyone interested in getting to know the music of the Cowboys or Erik Smith, just bring a 90 minute cassette to the next meeting in Chester and I'll be glad to record their latest releases for you. We'll be announcing the final details of the party soon, so keep an eye out for them.
What's in store for the rest of the year? Well, the 2000 Pacing the Keys Meeting of the Minds Parrot Head Convention in Key West is just around the corner. Check inside for more details. We'll also be making plans for the Christmas Party for the Children's Attention Home, as well as our own Christmas Party, both scheduled for December 2nd. These details will finalized soon. Oh, and there are a lot of road trips to be had if you just use your imagination and a little ingenuity. The parties will be plentiful and the details can be found inside this latest edition of the SPH Telegraph. So kick back with your favorite elixir and take in the periodical that has no other useful purpose than to wrap up the leftover flounder from last night's dinner.
MEXICO CITY (AP) - After a five-year bash that saw global tequila consumption nearly double, liquor producers are waking up with pounding heads - unable to keep up with tequila demand even as prices soar. Squeezed by a severe shortage of the blue agave used to make the potent spirit, prices are skyrocketing for the cactus-like plant as well as for your favorite tequila, if you can still find it at the liquor store. Relief could be years away.
"Nobody ever imagined demand would reach these levels," said Ramon Gonzalez, head of Mexico's Tequila Regulatory Council, which oversees the industry. Tequila's star began to rise in the early 1990s, with Mexican production nearly doubling to top 50 million gallons in the five years through 1999. About half was exported - 80 percent of that to the United States, where tequila is now an established party drink.
Driving the shortage even more than the boom in tequila consumption is the re-education of the global palate. All tequila must be made with at least 51 percent blue agave grown in specified areas of Mexico. Used to be, almost all tequila merely met the minimum, and was completed with cheaper distilled sugar cane. Brands like Margaritaville Tequila, Sauza and Jose Cuervo posted strong sales with such brews, which often are used to make margaritas.
But over the last half decade, many consumers have demanded the finer and more expensive 100 percent agave sipping tequilas. Between 1995 and 1999, overall production of pure agave tequilas rose 300 per-cent, while exports shot up 600 percent. Add in agave plants destroyed by a 1997 fungus plague, and you explain today's supply crisis and its price rises.
The number of blue agave plants in Mexico dropped by nearly half to 107 million this year from 1997, according to the National Tequila Chamber. That pushed down tequila production growth to 9 percent from an average 16.5 percent the last five years. "Before we made spoken arrangements to buy from the agave growers, but now even a written contract can mean nothing, as there is always someone willing to offer more money," said Jaime Orendain, who owns a pure tequila distillery called Azteca de Jalisco.
Orendain said he now pays up to $1,050 for a ton of agave. That's nearly 20 times more than he paid last August. The consumer is feeling the pinch. Orendain estimates the agave shortage already has pushed up tequila prices by about a third. He confesses to a similar price hike in his own Arette brand to around $18 a liter in Mexico and $40 in the United States.
The shortage of agave is far from obvious when you look out over the misty blue plantations covering Mexico's tequila-producing region, centered in the eastern state of Jalisco. But agave needs seven to 10 years to mature, and the spiky tufts you see are too young to produce the sugary juice that is extracted from the plant's huge pineapple-shaped core, fermented and then distilled twice to become tequila. "It didn't occur to anyone to invest in planting agave seven years ago, when there was overproduction and prices were rock-bottom," Gonzalez said.
Last year, Orendain's mid-sized distillery produced 1.3 million gallons of 100 percent agave tequila for sale in Mexico, the United States, Central America and Hong Kong. This year, he expects the agave crunch to force him to cut production by 20 percent. He said his company isn't at risk of going under, but that many small-scale producers are in trouble because they can't pay the raw material prices in this seller's market.
"The boom came without anybody thinking it through properly, and now what? We are all left crying," said Jorge Ruiz, owner of the small La Escondida distillery founded by his grandfather in 1920. The disgruntled tequila veteran has his survival strategy. He will do everything possible to satisfy one regular European order, and sell anything left to the major tequila players who are busily buying from smaller producers to keep open their thirsty new markets. Most of the top tequila companies are linked to major beverage multinationals.
Jose Cuervo, producer of the best known tequila outside Mexico, is 45 percent owned by United Distillers of Britain, which also sells Johnnie Walker whiskey and Smirnoff vodka. Another British concern, Allied Domecq, owns the well-known Sauza brands, while the U.S. firm Brown-Forman owns 33 percent of Orendain Tequila, another top-selling name. Don Julio, considered one of Mexico's finest tequilas, is part-owned by Seagram. Companies of this size are able to ride the crisis in part by increasing promotion of their mixed-sugar tequilas. Even Herradura, a major brand of pure tequila, intends to introduce a mixed variety.
"The liters must be kept up, so the categories are being reshuffled. The industry is not going to die, but it is going to change," said Gonzalez, the Regulatory Council chief. He said the future of tequila is safe as long as agave growers and liquor producers plan ahead to break the oversupply and undersupply cycle.
It would be a major mistake, to even temporarily relax the rule that tequilas contain at least 51 percent agave, he added. Behind his desk, Gonzalez keeps a collection of foul-smelling fake tequilas with very little, or zero, agave content that he vows will never legally bear the name of tequila. He shows off his favorite, a bottle adorned with a vulture in dark glasses and a Mexican hat. "It rots your gut and gives you the message, 'Let's go crazy,'" he said.
A recent auction on the web site eBay had people raising their eyebrows when the final bid was placed. 72 bids were placed with the winning bid peaking at $14,500. The private auction (meaning the bidder's identities were not made public) began on July 18th and ended July 28th. The owner of the memorabilia received an e-mail from Buffett's personal assistant Mike Ramos saying he was interested in buying the whole lot from him, but instead he decided to put the items up for auction on the eBay site. Here's the lowdown on what was bought for 14 ½ grand:
A screenplay written by Buffett with over 110 handwritten pages, signed and dated in 1975.
A story - Watching Away in Margaritaville - four pages, signed and dated 1977.
Notes about life, the band, and albums, signed and dated 1975.
A Journal of Jimmy's 1st sailboat, the Euphoria, with notes from Bimini and Nassau.
Over 15 pages of stories about people and events (Jimmy Carter, Farrah Fawcett, John Wayne and Ernest Hemingway to name a few), dated January, 1977.
Six songs, handwritten, and titled as follows: Please Don't Say Manana signed and dated 1977; Untitled song dated 12/29/75; Someone Is Taking Us All To The Cleaners dated 1975; Defying Gravity (actually written by Jesse Winchester); Cliches (You Know You Can't Get There From Here) dated 1975; and Havana Daydreamin' dated 1975.
To see pictures of this extraordinary find, visit the Jimmy Dreamz web site at
Memories From Atlanta
In no particular order, and anonymously listed, here are some memories from our bus trip to the Atlanta Buffett concert provided by you, our members:
· Pink Thong Man - Can you imagine the other guy describing his weekend: "Yeah, I got my ass kicked by a guy in a pink thong, but nothing out of the ordinary happened."
· DeWayne Allen almost being left behind at a convenience store in Augusta, GA.
· Stop drinking the water!!! The holding tank's full!!!
· No Fingers Taylor.
· Randy's jello-shot nipples.
· Rick relieving the hot & thirsty with his water cooler full of margaritas.
· The thatched tiki hut bar set up in the parking lot, complete with bartender and enough bar stools to go around the whole thing (none were empty though…dammit)
· Sunny Jim playing live at the Atlanta PHC tailgate.
· My little black jug o' Tequila. Whew! That was some powerful sh*t mon!
· All the great food everyone brought and those members who sacrificed next to the roaring hot grills to make sure we didn't go burger-less.
· Jo & Doug Bennett's instant Melon Balls…tasty but potent.
· Edisto Island shrimp…need I say more?
· And from a personal perspective, being able to see old friends at a Buffett concert really made the day for me…even more so than the concert. It's what this whole parrot head phenomenon has meant to me over the years: Good Friends!
"I gotta go where the wind and the water are free"
Atlanta Set List
Knees of My Heart
Changes in Latitudes
Cheeseburger In Paradise
Off To See The Lizard
Chanson Pour Les Petits Enfants
Who's the Blonde Stranger?
Been There (Clint Black Song)
One Particular Harbour
Son of a Son of a Sailor
Looking Back (Mac MacAnally Song)
(Back With Full Band)
Why Don't We Get Drunk
We Are The People
Gypsies In The Palace
If It All Falls Down
Brown Eyed Girl
Another Saturday Night
A Pirate Looks at 40
Handing Over The Keys
by Milrade Cherfils, USA Today
Key West, FL - "I'm so burned out on this town." The words came with a long sigh from M.L. Boxley, packing her childhood memories, clothes and breakables. She was getting ready to move to Lubbock, Texas, after 14 years in Key West. Her employers at the Flemming Street Inn told her they could no longer afford to keep her in her front desk concierge job. She decided she could no longer afford Key West. Ms. Boxley moved here to live in paradise. But paradise lately had come with a steep price for the 53-year-old: a high cost of living, floods of tourists and burdensome traffic. The desire to welcome tourists and their dollars and the resentment over their effect is a dilemma for residents and business owners. Some of Key West's 32,000 year-round residents are forced to work two or three jobs to survive. They also compete for space on the eight-square-mile island with the 2 million tourists who visit each year. Even Key West boosters realize the changing nature of their small enclave and know it's hard to find a balance between the bless-ing and burden of tourism. Overall, nearly 3 million visitors a year spend $1.4 billion on the island chain which stretches 126 miles from Florida City to Key West. Among problems facing the Keys are traffic, transportation, poor water quality and sewage contamination, which was blamed for closing Key West's beaches last summer. County voters last Nov. 4th approved a $23 million bond issue to help clean up the city's water and update Key West's antiquated sewer system. Residents and businesses have since begun welcoming back a steady stream of visitors to the resort, which has long been an outpost for the offbeat.
"You're caught up in the internet, you think it's such a great asset, you're wrong, wrong, wrong"
iparty.com - Your Parrot Head party supply site. www.iparty.com/parrot
Church of Buffett, Orthodox - All things relevant to Buffett including daily news updates. www.cobo.org/news.html
BuffettNews.com - Another source for news about the King of Somewhere Hot. www.buffettnews.com/news.html
Parrot Heads in Paradise, Inc. - This is the parent head club that rules over all Parrot Head Clubs.
Key West - The site to find out what's happening on the Isle of Bones. www.keywest.com
Parrot Head Web Ring - Search all 456 member web sites. www.geocities.com/TheTropics/Lagoon/3292
Save The Manatee Club - Manatee preservation site. www.SaveTheManatee.org
The Tropics Exotic Bird Refuge Refuge for abused parrots. http:// tropics.parrotrefuge.com
Endless Carnival Party
The SPHC's 3rd Annual Endless Carnival Party is scheduled for Saturday, September 30th at the Commodore Yacht Club on Lake Wylie. This will be a catered event and there will be a silent auction of great Buffett/Parrot Head items to help benefit our charities The Children's Attention Home of Rock Hill and The Tropics Exotic Bird Refuge of Kannapolis, NC. Expatriated SPHC member Erik Smith of Hilton Head will open the evening's phestivities with the Caribbean Cowboys of Asheville headlining the event. Full details will be available after our August meeting.
Fingers East Coast Tour Dates
Greg "Fingers" Taylor has announced the dates for his upcoming east coast tour and Charlotte will be among those stops. He'll be playing the Double Door Inn, Charlotte's address for great blues since the 70's, on Friday September 8th. Details have not been released yet, but as soon as get them we'll pass 'em along to you. Greg will also be playing the Wild Wing Cafés in Hilton Head and Mt. Pleasant on September 7th and 10th respectively. So, what has the skinny boy been up to since his departure from the Coral Reefer Band? Well, he recorded a CD with Michigan based Living Soul & the Pearl Divers, laid down harp tracks on two CD's for Mac MacAnally & Chris LeDoux (both CD's have been released), will be recording a CD of his own soon, and is supposedly writing a book. The Living Soul release is an enhanced CD with an interview of Fingers discussing his 30 years with Jimmy Buffett. Visit Greg's web site at fingers.ontheweb.nu
"Now he lives in the islands, fishes the pilin's and drinks his green label each day"
Margaritaville.com recently announced that Jimmy and the Reefers will perform a concert at Blaisdell Arena on Saturday, October 7th, in Honolulu, HI. This will be Jimmy's first appearance in our 50th state since 1992 when he appeared with several other groups in a benefit for Hurricane Iniki victims.
2000 Meeting of the Minds
The 9th Annual Meeting of the Minds Parrot Head Convention is scheduled for November 2nd - 5th in Key West. The theme for this year's convention is "Pacing the Keys" and the Wyndham Casa Marina Resort will be our host hotel. The line-up of entertainment, as in year's past, is extraordinary: Jim Morris & his Big Bamboo Band, James "Sunny Jim" White, St. Somewhere, Scott Kirby, Key West The Band, Jim Hoehn, Kevin Mulvena, Koko Loco, Hugo Duarte, A1A, The Calypso Nuts, John Frinizi, Tropical Soul, and Jimmy Maraventano are currently signed up to play for the throngs. There will be a raffle and auction of great Buffett/Parrot Head items including autographed Buffett stuff. There will be a Mini-Mart with vendors selling all kinds of Parrot Head merchandise and of course the Street Festival is back for another rousing party on the Margaritaville block of Duval Street. The Hogs Breath will be doing their Cuban BBQ again and The Pier House will once again be hosting us for their annual Beach Party. Stay tuned to the October issue of the Sandlapper PH Telegraph for a full schedule of events, or visit the PHiP web site for more info:
PHC of Charlotte Prez Recouping
Don Heard, president of the Parrot Head Club of Charlotte, was injured in a mutli-car collision involving a tractor trailer truck and three other cars. Despite suffering multiple fractures in his right leg, Don is just happy to be alive. After a few days stay at a local hospital, Don somehow managed to make it to Atlanta for the July 15th concert in a wheel chair that was fully decked out in Parrot Head regalia ( I even hear he got backstage with the help of Peter Mayer, Jimmy's lead guitarist).
Who Are We???
The Sandlapper Parrot Head Club (SPHC) is a non-profit organization that ROCKS! Our Caribbean Soul purpose is to help local and national charities, embrace the environment and enjoy the tropical spirit of the music of Jimmy Buffett. Our designated area of operation is the York, Chester and Lancaster County area of South Carolina, though we have members from Charlotte, Charleston, Hilton Head, Myrtle Beach, Florida, California, Las Vegas and Texas. To learn more about the SPHC, visit our web site at www.SandlapperPHC.com or give our information hotlines a call at 803-980-FINS (local in Rock Hill, SC)
or toll free at 1-877-BUFFETT
"I remember as a child all the happiness and smiles floatin' round my Grandma's Sunday table.
Buffett To Play Concert For The Democratic National Committee
"The importance of electing ... got me to return to concert production one last time," says Miramax Films co-chairman Harvey Weinstein. Now he's partnered in yet another gala event. "The Concert," to be held Sept. 14 at Radio City Music Hall, for the Democratic National Committee. Weinstein has teamed with Jann Wenner (Rolling Stone Magazine) and John Sykes to present this concert featuring Jimmy Buffett, Bette Midler, Crosby, Stills and Nash, Lenny Kravitz, Sheryl Crow, Jon Bon Jovi, Macy Gray, Don Henley, Glenn Frey, and Timothy B. Schmit who will perform songs by the Eagles.
|Calendar of Phlockings|
|August 8th||SPHC monthly phlocking, The Summit Restaurant, Chester, 7PM|
|August 9th||SPHC concession stand workout at Knight's Castle, 5PM|
|August 17th & 19th||Buffett plays Cincinnati|
|August 22nd||Buffett plays Raleigh|
|August 23rd||SPHC final concession stand workout at Knight's Castle, 5PM|
|August 24th||Worthington Station plays Tubby's, Cherry Rd., Rock Hill, 7 - 10PM|
|August 24th & 26th||Buffett plays Columbia, MD|
|August 25th||Worthington Station plays Midtown Kenilworth, Charlotte, 6 - 10PM|
|August 29th||Buffett plays Jones Beach, Long Island, NY|
|August 31st||Buffett plays Boston|
|September 1st||Worthington Station plays Midtown Raw Bar, Charlotte, 7 - 11PM|
|September 2nd||Buffett plays Boston|
|September 12th||SPHC monthly meeting, ??? to be announced|
|September 22nd||Worthington Station plays Stacy's Sports Bar, Rock Hill, 9PM - Midnight|
|September 22nd||Richmond PHC's Stars on the Water Party, with A1A & B2B|
|September 30th||SPHC's 3rd Annual Endless Carnival Party, Commodore Yacht Club, Lake Wylie, with The Caribbean Cowboys & Erik Smith|
|November 2nd - 5th||9th Annual Meeting of the Minds Parrot Head Convention, Key West|
|December 2nd||SPHC's Christmas Party for the Children's Attention Home|
|December 2nd||SPHC's Christmas Party for Members, details TBA|
|December 8th||X-mas in MargaRaleighville, Parrot Heads of North Carolina|