Call it island music, call it gulf & western or just call it Buffett music.
Whatever you name the genre, it has one purpose: to transport you away from hard work and soul-crushing stress to good times, cold beer, sunny beaches, tasty booze and fun-loving companions.
Since releasing "A White Sport Coat and a Pink Crustacean," Jimmy Buffett has been the king of island-styled country music.
His hits talk of pirates, margaritas, volcanoes, Mondays, sharks, cheeseburgers, getting drunk and a whole lot more. And his fans so love his music that they've supported his huge "Margaritaville" merchandising empire that includes everything from shoes to sunglasses and chicken wings to coconut rum. There are even $300 "frozen concoction makers."
It's no surprise that other artists have gotten in on the game, whether it's for love of easygoing beach fun or for a slice of the Buffett pie.
Since we've all heard "Margaritaville" and "Son of a Son of a Sailor" plenty of times, we surveyed the array of island-friendly tunes to find the best non-Buffett offerings in the style he pioneered.
These 11 best will make you want to blow off your adult responsibilities and relocate to a beachside town or tavern, much like Buffett did years ago.
"Toes" by Zac Brown Band With his toes in the water, Buffett buddy Zac Brown sings about drinking beer, palm trees, bikinis and playing guitar. "Life is good today," indeed.
"Bananas and Blow" by Ween Full of steel drums, this tune could be mistaken for a Buffett song, but for a fact it's about fruit and cocaine. When we asked readers for Buffett-style songs, they nominated this one far more than any other.
"Knee Deep" by Zac Brown Band (feat. Jimmy Buffett) This one features Buffett himself singing, and it's all about escaping life, getting "knee deep in the water somewhere" and looking forward to the sunshine. His only worry: "Is the tide gonna reach my chair?"
"No Shoes, No Shirt, No Problems" by Kenny Chesney Lounging on the beach with a drink in hand is a way of life for Kenny Chesney, or so he says at the beginning of the song's video, which shows him mostly adhering to the dress code in the song's title.
"Southern Cross" by Crosby, Stills & Nash After his love for a woman goes sour, the song's character takes off sailing "on a boat/Goin' to Southern islands." "Southern Cross" hit No. 18 on the Billboard charts in 1982. Buffett has covered this song.
"Out Last Night" by Kenny Chesney Ever wake up in the morning and realize some crazy stuff went down last night? Chesney documents the experience, including drinking too much beer and introducing yourself as a senator's son. Those were fun times.
"Beer in Mexico" by Kenny Chesney Much like Buffett sang about frozen concoctions and Key West in "Margaritaville," Chesney sings about sitting in a tourist town and enjoying some adult beverages.
"This Afternoon" by Nickelback The normally hard-rocking Canadians sang this tune about women, sitting poolside, drinking beer, smoking pot and hanging out.
"Six-Pack Summer" by Phil Vassar Joys such as parties, barbecues, six packs and, um, NASCAR are what come to mind when Phil Vassar gets ready for summer. One of the great things about summer, according to Vassar, is a copy of Buffett's greatest hits, naturally.
"Some Beach" by Blake Shelton Blake Shelton needs a place to go — preferably with a beautiful sunset, dancing and "lovers romancing" — after people make him angry. He's angry enough to almost call them something closely resembling the song's title.
"Stays in Mexico" by Toby Keith "What happens in Mexico stays in Mexico," as the song goes. The song offers good advice for the vices you may find on a tropical vacation, such as "Don't bite off more than you can chew" and "One more (tequila) is never enough."
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