Gulf Coast Renaissance Man

Singer, Songwriter, Author,
Actor, Businessman, Activist
Head Parrot Head


Nibbling on sponge cake, watching the sun bake,
All of those tourists covered with oil,
Strumming my six string, on my front porch swing,
Smell those shrimp, they're beginning to boil.

Wasting away again in Margaritaville,
Searching for my lost shaker of salt,
Some people claim that there's a woman to blame,
But I know --- it's nobody's fault.


Wasted All the Way to the Bank


I have to admit, after starting my research on this biography, I was tempted to follow up on the schedule of Jimmy Buffett and his Coral Reefer Band.  At the time of this writing, he came to perform for the first time near me, Saturday August 30, 2014, at Hershey Park Stadium. The show  also featured Alan Jackson, and was located, of course, in the most famous chocolate town I know of, Hershey, Pennsylvania.  He has got the kind of voice and music that make him a very likeable kind of person. Personally, I'm not thrilled with some of his use of vulgarity, irreverence, and blatantly liberal politics, but, I confess I listen to other musicians who share some different world views to mine, so, I like his sound. Anyway, I once shared those same youthful philosophies -- I guess just like David Horowitz, I changed. So I don't wish him to fall off the stage again (sent him to the hospital) like he did in January of 2011 at the Hordern Pavilion in Sidney Australia.  Look, I even recently bought his 1995 CD, Barometer Soup at a thrift shop (before I knew I'd write this).

I didn’t know it was going to last this long, at this pace. If you do the math, we’re only doing about 20 shows this year. I still like doing it, but I’m also 67 years old. I’ve had a good run. I’ve got a lot of things that I want to do that don’t involve me being on the road. With Margaritaville TV, fans can watch the show now.

Let's get this out of the way as well: DNA testing has proven that wealthy "Uncle" Warren Buffett is not a blood relative. However maybe Bristol English sailor on the Whaler, Bristol, John Buffett (born in 1797) is, at least, very similar in a time warp parallel way; especially in surviving several shipwrecks.

Christmas Present

1946 was the year another baby boomer with the almost pretentious name of James William Buffett, was born in Pascagoula, Mississippi. It auspiciously was on the day Emperor Constantine made the birthday of Jesus to coincide with Winter Solstice.

Sweet Mobile Home Alabama

His father, James Delaney Buffet, Jr., known as JD, (Jimmy would also be known as JB), was a Pascagoula native, though nearby Mobile, Alabama would be the place of employment after discharge from the Army Corps of Engineers (and once was a flight mechanic in the Pacific) in 1946 at the Alabama Dry Dock and Shipbuilding Company. He was also Later Mobile, AL would be home to him, his wife, Mary Loraine Peets, and their only boy, Jimmy, and his two sisters, Loraine (Laurie) Marie and Lucy Anne (Lulu). Just as a later song of Jimmy's declared, JD was the son of a sailor.

His father in the shipbuilding industry probably got Jimmy acquainted with maritime activities, which would become more predominant later in his life.

Whether or not his Catholic elementary and middle schooling of St. Ignatius, and then the McGill Institute high school education had any effect on his career, I'll let you decide. His parents hoped if Jimmy wasn't going to be a Jesuit priest, he'd at least join the Navy, however he was a Boy Scout and an altar boy. Anyway, that fall semester of 1964 after graduation, he was a very shy freshman admitted to attend Alabama's Auburn University.

I was supposed to have been a Jesuit priest or a Naval Academy grad,
That was the way that my parents perceived me.
Those were the plans that they had,
Though I couldn't fit the part too dumb or too smart.
Ain't it funny how we all turned out,
I guess we are the people our parents warned us about.

You know I could have worked the rigs when the money was big
Or hopped a freighter south to Trinidad,
And when they tried to draft me I earned a college degree,
Buyin' time till things were not so bad;
But when I got a guitar found a job in a bar, playin' acid rock til I was numb,
Tell me where are the flashbacks they all warned us would come.

Frat Rat to Fret Rap

Jimmy pledged to the Alpha-Delta chapter of the Sigma Pi fraternity, where fellow member Johnny Youngblood taught JB to play guitar. "It's how you can meet the chicks, man!" Music, however became his new distracting preferred activity, and his grades fell in April of 1966 to the point of not meeting Auburn's academic criteria for remaining an undergraduate. But in the Fall of 1966 he enrolled at Pearl River Community College in Poplarville, Mississippi, (to avoid the draft).

More importantly to his fans, the Parrot Heads, (like Dead Heads for the Grateful Dead), he resumed his musical endeavors while in the Kappa Sigma fraternity, Epsilon-Nu Chapter in a frat house band with Rick Bennett, Doug Duncan, and Susan Pitman. You can see a picture of him in 1968 with his band Upstairs Alliance.

Stuck Inside Mobile with the New Orleans Blues Again

Buffett was a street musician busking for extra change on weekends while attending PRCC, and eventually he could catch up with bills with the Upstairs Alliance with gigs up and down the coast. He had a place in the French Quarter for a while, and in spite of his hippie New Orleans musical education, this time he got his grades to where he could transfer the following year to the University of Southern Mississippi, (Hattiesburg), where he received his Bachelor's of Science in Journalism and History in 1969.

With his degree, and wanting more choices as a volunteer than a very potential draftee, he attempted to enlist in the Officer's Candidate School, but a peptic ulcer caused him to be medically unfit. He resumed his musical career as a solo artist and dated, and engaged Margie Washichek at this time, they married in the Spring Hill College's St. Joseph's Chapel in Mobile on July 20, 1969.  While in Mobile he played the Admiral's Club, and had a fan and business mentor in Milton Brown. After JB recorded in Brown's studio, he was introduced to Billboard magazine executives from Nashville. In 1970 he was one of the performers on a "hits" cover band, the Now Generation, and they released two albums, Come Together and Hits are our Business on the Spar label.

First and Last Day Job

Nashville cats, play clean as country water.
Nashville cats, play wild as mountain dew.
Nashville cats, been playin' since they's babies.
Nashville cats, get work before they're two.

Because it's custom made for any mothers son
To be a guitar picker in Nashville.
And I sure am glad I got a chance to say a word about
The music and the mothers from Nashville. --John Sebastian

Buffett figured he could be a Nashville Cat and kill two birds with one fingerpickin' claw: be a writer for Billboard's country music section, and become a country musician himself, so to Tennessee he went in 1970. While working as reporter, he also recorded his first album, produced by Travis Turk on Andy Williams's new label,  Barnaby Records, (that Ray Stevens would use), Down to Earth. Jimmy Buffet sang on and wrote all the songs on this country-folk work except Buzz Cason helped on track number 4 and Milton Brown co-wrote # 8.

After this album's release, music would now be his day job and he left Billboard. Though selling not even 400 some odd copies, he recorded a second album, in 1971, High Cumberland Jubilee, but they lost the master tapes! (It didn't really get out on shelves until 1976.) Songs were sung by and most written by Jimmy Buffett (Tracks 1,4,5 (excerpt below), 7) and some with help by Buzz Cason or Larry Fliel (# 8).

A bargain basement atmosphere is no way to sell love,
And I can't be your superman above.
No I can't be your hero today,
That is all I really want to say
Go find a leading man who wants to play
And I can't be your hero today.

Things got worse, however, after having no 9 to 5, no big record sales, and no playing gigs, the short marriage had even shorter threads and unraveled to divorce.

Young Man and the Sea

Don't bother door, their's no one comin'.
The oceans roar, we're double drummin',
Of many silly thoughts and silly ways.

The ocean breeze has cooled my mind,
The salty days are her's and mine:
Just to do what we wanna.

It's all from havin' someone knowin',
Just which way your head is blowin'.
Who's always warm like in the mornin':
In Coconut Grove.
--J. Sebastian, Z. Yanovsky 1966


Whether or not it was friend Jerry Jeff Walker who convinced JB to go to Key West Florida, taking him in his old Packard, while he was in Coconut Grove Miami trying to secure contracts, it doesn't matter, because the rest is history, he's found his cheeseburger in paradise.  While not doing the occasional solo gig, he makes ends meet by being part of a fishing boat crew, thus beginning his tropical laid back education. Another source claims he smuggled and sold Marijuana by boat. Perhaps Pirate Head would be a better moniker.


The clouds were building up now for the trade wind and he looked ahead and saw a flight of wild ducks etching themselves against the sky over the water, then blurring, then etching again and he knew no man was ever alone on the sea.

Every day is a new day. It is better to be lucky. But I would rather be exact. Then when luck comes you are ready.
The Old Man and the Sea, John Hemingway


Jimmy while at the The Chart Room bar was introduced to Jane Slagsvol by her old college roommate, Larry "Groovy" Gray, (Larry Gorden L. Gray III), a Marathon, FL native, who later not only flew chartered planes, but could captain boats as well. He will be an important friend as time goes by. He had his first boat in 1976 with Jane, the Euphoria.

Full Sail

Headin' up to San Francisco,
For the Labor Day weekend show,
I've got my hush-puppies on,
I guess I never was meant for
Glitter rock and roll.
And honey I didn't know,
That I'd be missin' you so.

Come Monday It'll be all right,
Come Monday I'll be holding you tight.
I spent four lonely days in a brown L.A. haze,
And I just want you back by my side.

1973 was a turning point year for JB, as he signed with ABC Dunhill records (later owned by MCA) to release his first major album, A White Sport Coat and a Pink Crustacean. This featured the song "Why Don’t We Get Drunk..." whose auteur was Marvin Gardens. But, it wasn't until four albums later with the number 12 selling platinum album, Changes in Latitudes, Changes in Attitudes and 1977's big number 8 hit single, “Margaritaville” that Jimmy was firmly on the road to success, where there was no going back. The margarita that was the inspiration was one imbibed in Austin, TX in 1973. In 1974, from his Living & Dying in ¾ Time album, and while still trying to find his niche, he had a number 30 country-crossover song, "Come Monday." In 1975 had had his first Coral Reefer Band personnel, comprising of  Roger Bartlett, Greg “Fingers” Taylor, Harry Dailey, and Phillip Fajardo, though originally it was fictional, consisting of the members, the aforementioned Marvin Gardens, along with Kay Pasa, Al Vacado, and Kitty Litter. I guess needing a break from sand, water, and flat horizons, he bought a house in mountainous Aspen, Colorado.

Ketching Hell Paradise

Finances pumped up, he bought a bigger sailboat, a Cheoy Lee Clipper 48 foot ketch, the Euphoria II. You can buy it here, as of this writing. This is the one captained by his friend "Groovy" Gray, upon which JB ofttimes lived at various ports of call like Saint Barts (St. Bartholemy, French West Indies). JB sold it in 1979, the same year he recorded Volcano while docked at Montserrat. Groovy, also was President of Air Mango, a Caribbean charter company he founded. In 1979 he also bought and owned for a while a 26′ Alerion sloop the Savannah Jane.

His acting and writing screenplay scores started in the seventies, as well. In 1974 not only did he act in the less than financially successful Sam Waterston Jeff Bridges comedy western vehicle, Rancho Deluxe, but also provided the soundtrack. He does a scene in a bar singing “Livingston Saturday Night.” His 1978 song, "Cheeseburger in Paradise," would become more than just an amusing song down the years. In 1979, he had a part doing a live performance in the anti-establishment comedic drama, FM, and made it to the Rolling Stone cover of October 4, 1979, pic by Annie Leibovitz. He became politically active at this time, helping the 1976 Jimmy Carter campaign (who advocated; he also did an interview with High Times magazine in 1976 (the first with any musician), where he states, "I don't get stoned before shows, but afterwards I get real high . . ."; and there's an article in the December 2006 edition of that magazine, here. He was a partying friend with Keith Stroup, founder of NORML. From his 1974 A1A album and "A Pirate Looks at 40" he makes it clear his stand on the issue:

I've done a bit of smugglin',
I've run my share of grass.
I made enough money to buy Miami,
But I pissed it away so fast 

Diversification and Diversions

While busy early in the eighties, starting in 1983, he endured a nine year separation from wife Jane. Towards the end of eighties decade, Jimmy Buffett started his entrepreneur phase, albeit not making a big noise about it, since it did not juxtaposition well with the beach bum persona. His first foray was in 1985 with the chain of Key West Margaritaville restaurants (there are now almost 30 domestic and international, and a couple of years later he co- owned with celebrity Bill Murray, the minor league baseball team, the Fort Myers Miracles. He marketed Tee Shirts and Shark Lager.

In 1986 Jimmy bought his first Lake Aircraft Renegade seaplane, Lady of the Waters. He started his successful writing career in 1989 debuting with Tales from Margaritaville and its collection of short stories including the amusing vicarious search by his character Tully Mars, for Gregorio Fuentes, the real 'Old Man of the Sea' in Cuba. His 1985 "Greatest Hits" release, Songs You Know By Heart is still a best seller. It was the year that Parrot Heads was born according to Buffett:

Timothy B. Schmidt (Eagles bass player) was in the band, and we were playing a venue outside of Cincinnati called King’s Island. People had already started wearing Hawaiian shirts to our shows, but we looked out at this Cincinnati crowd, and they were glaringly brilliant to the point where it got our attention immediately. I said “Look at that!” Then Schmidt says to me, “They look like Deadheads in tropical suits. They’re like Parrot Heads!” He yelled to me in the middle of a song. So I immediately took the term and threw it over the microphone – the people identified themselves with the term from the get-go.
He buys the hotel Autour du Rocher on St Barts, but his song with that title says it all:
It was better than a painting
At le Musee de Beaux Arts
And simply what we did for fun
Back in the old St. Barts

Then the glitz and all the glamor
Hit like a hurricane
Or maybe we just all grew up
But it never was the same

The gendarmes finally closed the joint
And the fire it did the rest
But on New Year's Eve of '91
We sang the last request

We were dancing in the ashes
We were dancing in the sea
We were dancing in the ruins
Where we left our memories


He was not about to retire in the 90s, or get too laid back, he bought his own Grumman Widgeon G-44 (like the one that brought guest to Fantasy Island). He made the news in 1994 when he survived its crash in Madeket Harbor, Nantucket. "Jamaica Mistaica," a cut on his 1996 Banana Wind album is about his plane being shot at by authorities in Jamaica as mistakenly identified drug smugglers -- U2's Bono was a passenger. In 1998 he purchased a Cessna 208 – N208JB.

He once reminisced about one of his Caribbean dreams:

Le Select; it is where we went to celebrate the purchase of our dream hotel, Autour du Rocher, where I danced with Joni Mitchell on the dirt floor and then took her to our hotel to play 'Carey' for Groovy (the captain of the Euphoria II) on his birthday; It is where I wrote 'Little Miss Magic' for Savannah Jane; It was the bar that I had to clear myself with Maurius and the local population after the fiasco of events, including my arrest, after the infamous Rolling Stone cover affair. It is where I sold the Euphoria II; It is where on various occasions, I ran into Mick Fleetwood and John McVie, Bobby Short, Lauren Hutton, Mikhail Baryshnikov, Steve Martin, Lorne Michaels, Paul Simon, and a host of other celebrity gypsies who came and went from the island.


Flying, Almost Dying, and Crying in the 21st Century

He started out 2000 with a bang, playing for Bill Clinton's 54th birthday bash, and helping Al Gore's presidential run with a fundraising concert.

In 2001 he got thrown out of a NBA game by referee Joe Forte, (who stopped the game a short bit and signaled the police for backup), while cursing loudly at him while watching the Heat in Miami play the New York Knicks.

He made a million dollars from the Outback Steakhouse executives when they purchased the naming rights for his Cheeseburger in Paradise. The first one opened in Indianapolis in 2002. (They were since sold to Lulu's)

2003, however was a bad year for Jimmy, with many close ones dying; in May his father died at 83, after battling Alzheimer's, and then that September his 82 year old mother passed. Just weeks later in Charleston, South Carolina on October 13th, his old friend and partner Groovy Gray died. His twin engine Piper Aztec which left East Hampton Airport to meet friends in crashed because headwinds used up his fuel in the Francis Marion National Forest a dozen or so miles north of the city.

Though he continues to tour, pleasing most of his Parrot Heads, he did cause a rumble in the fan ether when he stopped playing his usual summer gig at Columbia's Merriwether Pavillion in 2011 as reported in April 06, 2001 Sun Newspaper by Lisa Respers, "'The Parrot Heads' feathers are ruffled.." And apparently having it moved to Nissan Pavilion in Bristow, Va doesn't seem local enough for the Marylanders. He is big business, Dave Burgess from Baltimore's 106.5 put it this way:

We filled a big pool with Lucky Charms, milk and potatoes, and participants had to dive for potatoes in order to win things like movie tickets, a gold necklace, Buffett tickets and station promotional items. The Jimmy Buffett tickets were actually more popular than the gold necklace, and the necklace cost $500.


Sailed off to Antigua,
It took her three days on a boat
Lookin' for some peace and quiet,
Maybe keep her dreams afloat.

But now she feels like a Remora
'Cause the school's still close at hand
Just behind the reef are the big white teeth,
Of the sharks that can swim on the land.

Can't you feel 'em circlin', honey?
Can't you feel 'em schoolin' around?
You got fins to the left, fins to the right,
And you're the only bait in town.
You got fins to the left, fins to the right,
And you're the only girl in town.





Studio albums


Title Album details Peak chart positions Certifications
(sales threshold)
US Country US CAN
Down to Earth
  • Release date: 1970
  • Label: Barnaby Records
High Cumberland Jubilee
  • Release date: 1976
  • Label: Barnaby Records
A White Sport Coat and a Pink Crustacean
  • Release date: June 1973
  • Label: ABC Records
43 205
Living & Dying in 3/4 Time
  • Release date: February 1974
  • Label: ABC Records
  • Release date: December 1974
  • Label: ABC Records
25 25
Havana Daydreamin'
  • Release date: January 1976
  • Label: ABC Records
21 65
Changes in Latitudes, Changes in Attitudes
  • Release date: January 1977
  • Label: ABC Records
2 12 43
  • US: Platinum
Son of a Son of a Sailor
  • Release date: March 1978
  • Label: ABC Records
6 10 7
  • US: Platinum
Volcano * 
  • Release date: August 1979
  • Label: MCA Records
13 14 26
  • US: Gold
"—" denotes releases that did not chart


Title Album details Peak chart positions
US Country US CAN
Coconut Telegraph
  • Release date: February 1981
  • Label: MCA Records
Somewhere over China
  • Release date: January 1982
  • Label: MCA Records
31 43
One Particular Harbour
  • Release date: September 1983
  • Label: MCA Records
35 59
Riddles in the Sand
  • Release date: September 1984
  • Label: MCA Records
18 95
Last Mango in Paris
  • Release date: June 1985
  • Label: MCA Records
7 53
  • Release date: June 1986
  • Label: MCA Records
32 67 91
Hot Water
  • Release date: June 1988
  • Label: MCA Records
Off to See the Lizard
  • Release date: June 1989
  • Label: MCA Records
"—" denotes releases that did not chart


Title Album details Peak chart
(sales threshold)
  • Release date: May 24, 1994
  • Label: Maragaritaville/MCA Records
5 48
  • US: Platinum
Barometer Soup
  • Release date: August 1, 1995
  • Label: Margaritaville/MCA Records
  • US: Gold
Banana Wind
  • Release date: June 4, 1996
  • Label: Margaritaville/MCA Records
  • US: Platinum
Don't Stop the Carnival
  • Release date: April 28, 1998
  • Label: Margaritaville/Island Records
  • US: Gold
Beach House on the Moon
  • Release date: May 24, 1999
  • Label: Margaritaville/Island Records
  • US: Gold
"—" denotes releases that did not chart


Title Album details Peak chart
(sales threshold)
US Country US
Far Side of the World
  • Release date: March 19, 2002
  • Label: Mailboat Records
License to Chill
  • Release date: July 13, 2004
  • Label: Mailboat/RCA Nashville
1 1
  • US: Platinum
Take the Weather with You
  • Release date: October 10, 2006
  • Label: Mailboat/RCA Nashville
1 4
  • US: Gold
Buffet Hotel
  • Release date: December 8, 2009
  • Label: Mailboat Records
"—" denotes releases that did not chart


Title Album details Peak chart
Songs from St. Somewhere
  • Release date: August 20, 2013
  • Label: Mailboat Records
4 22

Live albums

Title Album details Peak chart positions Certifications
(sales threshold)
US Country US CAN
You Had to Be There
  • Release date: October 1978
  • Label: ABC Records
29 72 80
  • US: Gold
Feeding Frenzy
  • Release date: October 1990
  • Label: MCA Records
  • US: Gold
Buffett Live: Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays
  • Release date: November 9, 1999
  • Label: Mailboat Records
  • US: Gold
Live in Auburn, WA
  • Release date: November 4, 2003
  • Label: Mailboat Records
Live in Las Vegas, NV
  • Release date: November 2003
  • Label: Mailboat Records
Live in Mansfield, MA
  • Release date: January 2004
  • Label: Mailboat Records
Live in Cincinnati, OH
  • Release date: January 2004
  • Label: Mailboat Records
Live in Hawaii
  • Release date: March 2005
  • Label: Mailboat Records
Live at Fenway Park
  • Release date: November 15, 2005
  • Label: Mailboat Records
Live at Texas Stadium
(with George Strait and Alan Jackson)
  • Release date: April 3, 2007
  • Label: Mailboat Records
4 11
Live in Anguilla
  • Release date: November 2007
  • Label: Mailboat Records
  • Release date: April 20, 2010
  • Label: Mailboat Records
Volcano - Live 2011
  • Release date: September 9, 2011
  • Label: Mailboat Records
Welcome to Fin City - "Live in Las Vegas" CD/DVD and CD/Blu-Ray
  • Release date: June 19, 2012
  • Label: Mailboat Records
"—" denotes releases that did not chart

Compilation and specialty albums

Title Album details Peak chart
(sales threshold)
US Country US
Songs You Know by Heart
  • Release date: 1985
  • Label: MCA Records
27 100
  • US: 7× Platinum
Boats, Beaches, Bars & Ballads 4-disc boxed set
  • Release date: 1992
  • Label: Margaritaville/MCA Records
  • US: 4× Platinum
Before the Beach
  • Release date: May 1993
  • Label: Margaritaville/MCA Records
Margaritaville Cafe: Late Night Menu
  • Release date: 1993
  • Label: MCA Records
Margaritaville Cafe: Late Night Gumbo
  • Release date: 1995
  • Label: Mailboat Records
Christmas Island
  • Release date: October 8, 1996
  • Label: Margaritaville/MCA Records
  • US: Platinum
Great American Summer Fun
with Jimmy Buffett
  • Release date: 1996
  • Label: MCA Records
  • Release date: June 30, 1998
  • Label: Premium Music
Meet Me In Margaritaville:
The Ultimate Collection
  • Release date: April 15, 2003
  • Label: UTV/MCA/Mailboat Records
  • US: 2× Platinum
Now Yer Squawkin'
  • Release date: March 28, 2005
  • Label: Recall Records
"—" denotes releases that did not chart


1960s and 1970s singles

Year Single Peak chart positions Album
US Country
1969 "Poopi-Do" single only
1970 "Abandoned on Tuesday"
"The Christian?" Down to Earth
"Ellis Dee (He Ain't Free)"
"Captain America"
1973 "The Great Filling Station Holdup" 58 A White Sport Coat
and a Pink Crustacean
"They Don't Dance Like Carmen"
"Grapefruit-Juicy Fruit" 23 47
"He Went to Paris"
1974 "Saxophones" 105 Living & Dying in ¾ Time
"Come Monday" 58 30 3 23
"Pencil Thin Moustache" 101 44 75 22
"A Pirate Looks at Forty" 101 A1A
"Door Number Three" 88 102
1976 "Havana Daydreamin'" Havana Daydreamin'
"The Captain and the Kid"
"Woman Goin' Crazy on Caroline Street"
1977 "Margaritaville" 13 8 1 8 4 1 Changes in Latitudes,
Changes in Attitudes
"Changes in Latitudes, Changes in Attitudes" 24 37 11 21 34 6
1978 "Cheeseburger in Paradise" 32 24 Son of a Son of a Sailor
"Livingston Saturday Night" 91 52 66 25
"Mañana" 84 97
1979 "Fins" 35 42 62 64 35 Volcano
"Volcano" 66 43 1
"Survive" 77 10
"—" denotes releases that did not chart

1980s singles

Year Single Peak chart positions Album
US Country
1980 "Hello Texas" Urban Cowboy (soundtrack)
"It's My Job" 57 51 32 Coconut Telegraph
"Stars Fell on Alabama"
1981 "Elvis Imitator" single only
"It's Midnight and I'm Not Famous Yet" 32 Somewhere Over China
"Where's the Party"
1982 "I Don't Know (Spicoli's Theme)" Fast Time at Ridgemont High (soundtrack)
1983 "One Particular Harbour" 22 4 One Particular Harbour
"Brown Eyed Girl" 13
1984 "When the Wild Life Betrays Me" 42 34 Riddles in the Sand
"Bigger Than the Both of Us" 58
"Who's the Blonde Stranger?" 37 39
1985 "Christmas in the Caribbean" Tennessee Christmas
"Gypsies in the Palace" 56 Last Mango in Paris
"If the Phone Doesn't Ring, It's Me" 16 37 45
"Please Bypass This Heart" 50
"Ragtop Day" The Slugger's Wife (soundtrack)
1986 "I Love the Now" Floridays
"Take It Back" single only
1988 "Homemade Music" Hot Water
"Bring Back the Magic" 24
1989 "Take Another Road" 18 Off to See the Lizard
"—" denotes releases that did not chart

1990s singles

Year Single Peak chart positions Album
US Country
1993 "Another Saturday Night" 74 29 Margaritaville Cafe: Late Night Menu
1994 "Fruitcakes" 29 Fruitcakes
"Frenchman for the Night"
1995 "Bank of Bad Habits" Barometer Soup
"Mexico" 25 50 38
1998 "Island Fever" Don't Stop the Carnival
1999 "Pacing the Cage" 79 Beachouse on the Moon
"I Will Play for Gumbo"
"Southern Cross" Buffet Live: Tuesday, Thursdays, Saturdays
"—" denotes releases that did not chart

2000s singles

Year Single Peak chart
US Country
2002 "Far Side of the World" Far Side of the World
2004 "Hey Good Lookin'" (with Clint Black, Kenny Chesney,
Alan Jackson, Toby Keith and George Strait)
8 63 License to Chill
"Trip Around the Sun" (with Martina McBride) 20 112
2005 "Piece of Work" (with Toby Keith)
"Back to the Island"
"Barefootin'" (with Alan Jackson) Hoot (soundtrack)
2006 "Bama Breeze" 58 Take the Weather with You
"Here We Are"
2007 "Everybody's on the Phone"
"Getting the Picture" single only
2009 "Summerzcool" 109
"—" denotes releases that did not chart

Other singles

Guest singles

Year Single Artist Peak chart positions Certifications
(sales threshold)
1991 "Voices That Care" Various 11 6 61 non-album single
2003 "It's Five O'Clock Somewhere" Alan Jackson 1 17
  • US: Gold2
Greatest Hits Volume II
2011 "Knee Deep" Zac Brown Band 1 18 42
  • CAN: Gold3
  • US: 2× Platinum4
You Get What You Give
"—" denotes releases that did not chart

Other charted songs

Year Single Peak positions Album
US Country
1999 "Margaritaville" (re-recording with Alan Jackson) 63 Under the Influence (Alan Jackson album)

Music videos

Year Video Director(s)
1973 "Pencil Thin Moustache" Rick Trow
"Come Monday"
"He Went to Paris"
"Nautical Wheelers"
1983 "Livin' It Up" Michael Nesmith
"One Particular Harbour" Frank Martin
1985 "La Vie Dansante" Michael Nesmith
"Who's the Blonde Stranger"
1988 "Homemade Music" Jeff Stein
1989 "Take Another Road" Jim Shea
1990 "Jamaica Farewell"
1991 "Voices That Care" (Various) David S. Jackson
1993 "Another Saturday Night" Bret Redman
1994 "Fruitcakes" Jim Shea
1999 "Changes in Latitudes, Changes in Attitudes" Stan Kellam/Mike Ramos/Kevin McGrath
"The City" Mike Ramos
2003 "It's 5 O'Clock Somewhere" (with Alan Jackson) Trey Fanjoy
2004 "Hey Good Lookin'" (with Clint Black, Kenny Chesney,
Alan Jackson, Toby Keith and George Strait)
Trey Fanjoy/Stan Kellam
"Trip Around the Sun" (with Martina McBride) Trey Fanjoy
2006 "Bama Breeze"
2011 "Knee Deep" (with Zac Brown Band) Darren Doane
2013 "Too Drunk to Karaoke" (with Toby Keith)5 Michael Salomon


  • * Volcano also peaked at number 9 on the RPM Country Albums chart in Canada.


Acting Credits

2010 Hawaii Five-0 (TV Show) Frank Bama

2006 Hoot Mr. Ryan

1998 From the Earth to the Moon (TV Show) First Journalist

1995 Congo 727 Pilot

1994 Cobb The armless guy

1992 The Tonight Show with Jay Leno (TV Show) Musical Guest

1991 Hook Shoe-Stealing Pirate

1984 Repo Man  Additional Blond Agent

1982 All My Children Chainsaw McGregor  

Producer Credits

2006 Hoot

2006 Sun Dogs

2006 Jimmy Buffett: Live at Wrigley Field - The Labor Day Weekend Shows


Soundtrack Credits

2013 The Wrong Mans

2012 What to Expect When You're Expecting

2010 Cheeseburger (Short Film)

2009 Late Night with Jimmy Fallon (TV Show)

2006 Hoot  

2005 Dancing with the Stars (TV Show)

2003 Anger Management

2003 Breakfast with Hunter  

2003 Hollywood's Magical Island: Catalina

2000 Emeril (TV Show)

1997 Contact

1993 The Firm

1993 Johnny Bago (TV Show)

1992 FernGully: The Last Rainforest

1991 The Doctor

1990 Arachnophobia

1989 Always

1989 The Simpsons (Cartoon TV Show)

1985 Summer Rental

1985 The Slugger's Wife

1983 Hot Money

1982 Fast Times at Ridgemont High

1980 Coast to Coast

1980 Urban Cowboy

1978 FM

1975 Rancho Deluxe

1975 Saturday Night Live (TV Show)

He was in the Forbes magazine list of top performers in 1994, 5 and 6.

Billboard Magazine's past 25 year's top twenty live perfomers:

  1. The Rolling Stones
  2. U2
  3. Bruce Springsteen
  4. Madonna
  5. Bon Jovi
  6. Elton John
  7. Dave Matthews Band
  8. Celine Dion
  9. Kenny Chesney
  10. The Eagles
  11. The Police/Sting
  12. Roger Waters
  13. Paul McCartney
  14. Billy Joel
  15. Rod Stewart
  16. Neil Diamond
  17. Metallica
  18. Aerosmith
  19. George Strait
  20. Jimmy Buffett
  21. Coldplay
  22. Toby Keith
  23. Cher
  24. Fleetwood Mac
  25. AC/DC

He is also the founder of Singing for Change charitable foundation, 1995; he's a member and honorary director of Greenpeace Foundation , as well as the Cousteau Society, and on the chair of Save the Manatee Commission of Florida.


Where it all ends I can't fathom my friends.
If I knew I might toss out my anchor.
So I cruise along always searchin' for songs,
Not a lawyer a thief or a banker:

But a son of a son, son of a son ,
Son of a son of a sailor,
Son of a gun, load the last ton,
One step ahead of the jailer.



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