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article imageJimmy Buffett plans free concert to benefit Gulf Coast region

By Lynn Herrmann     Jun 21, 2010 in Entertainment
Jimmy Buffett and the Coral Reefer Band will be joined by a host of popular music talent in a free concert scheduled for July 1 in Gulf Shores, Alabama.
A benefit concert presented by CMT featuring Jimmy Buffett and the Coral Reefer Band, Kenny Chesney, Zac Brown, Sonny Landreth, Jesse Winchester, Allen Toussaint and additional special guests will be held on July 1 along the beach at Gulf Shores, Alabama.
The free concert, CMT Presents Jimmy Buffett & Friends Live From the Gulf Coast, is being organized and promoted to show support and solidarity with Gulf coast residents, businesses and the region’s culture.
"There are always welcome breaks in every storm, but the unfortunate reality is that this disaster is not going away for a while," Buffett said in a news release. "But a few hours of fun, void of the constant reminders of the situation, is a good thing, and that is basically what I do," he added.
Although the concert is free, concert organizers announced on Monday that tickets will be required for admission to the beach concert. There will be a 4-ticket limit, and the concert audience will be capped at 35,000. Tickets will be available, beginning Wednesday (June 23) at 10 a.m. CST, through www.CMT.com, Ticketmaster.com, and all Ticketmaster outlets.
CMT president Brian Phillips said: "Music has healing powers, and who better than Jimmy and friends to summon them up?"
"It is CMT's privilege to present this special. We send a message to the people of the Gulf Coast that our audience -- and the world -- stands beside them," he added on the company website.
Buffett was born in Pascagoula, Miss., on Christmas Day 1946 and has strong ties to the Gulf coast region. His family still lives in the area and his sister, Lucy, runs Lulu’s at Homeport Marina, a popular Gulf Shores eatery and nightspot.
Buffett’s island-themed music is hugely popular among his loyal fan base, known as “parrotheads”. Among his many hits are “Margaritaville” and “Come Monday”.
In a statement, Alabama Gov. Bob Riley thanked Buffett and the cast of musicians for throwing their support to those impacted by the BP oil fiasco in the Gulf of Mexico. "I thank Jimmy Buffett and these other great artists for coming to perform on Alabama's coast. Their music will lift up spirits and help encourage visitors to come here and enjoy our world famous Southern hospitality," he said.
John Hamlin, CMT senior vice president of music and talent, notes Gulf Shores was chosen because of its central location to the Gulf coastline. "Gulf Shores is at the center of the vast coastline affected by the oil spill, and we hope that people from all across this beautiful stretch of America will come down, support local businesses on the way and enjoy some great music to elevate an important cause,” he said.
Performances will be simulcast live on Radio Margaritaville, available on XM Satellite Radio and Sirius Satellite Radio. A portion of the show will be aired live on CMT from 8 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. ET/PT.
The concert is being produced by CMT, the State of Alabama, the City of Gulf Shores, Live Nation, and Land Shark Lager, with local promotional services provided by Mobile-based Huka Entertainment. Gates will open at 3 p.m. and the concert begins at 5 p.m.
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