Margaritaville may open in New York City

From the Commercial Observer: “With Margaritaville Deal Nearly Sealed, $295M Brill Building Investment Closes”

Jimmy Buffett’s hospitality brand Margaritaville is negotiating a deal for its first New York City location at the Brill. A source with intimate knowledge of the situation previously told CO that Margaritaville’s 25,000-square-foot space will span part of the ground floor, the lower level and the 11th-floor rooftop. In addition to his tropical-themed restaurant Margaritaville and a store, on the rooftop, Buffett will have a Landshark Bar & Grill, the source said, serving a quick bite and drinks in a more casual setting.

The Brill Building is located at 1619 Broadway between West 49th and West 50th Streets.

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Buffett makes Forbes List of Highest Paid Celebrities

Jimmy Buffett comes in at #66 on Forbes List of the Worlds Highest Paid Celebrities with $40.5 million.

Source Of Wealth: Margaritaville
With locations from Atlantic City to Panama City, Buffett’s Margaritaville empire is broader–and lucrative–than just about any venture by his top-earning celebrity peers. He still finds time to play gigs in front of his Parrothead fan base, to the tune of 27 dates in our scoring period.

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Margaritaville Media hires key individuals

From Variety: “Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville Hires Gawker Head of Video Production Sarah Ramey

The digital media group of Margaritaville Enterprises, the hospitality, merchandise and media firm based on the carefree lifestyle invoked by Jimmy Buffett’s music, has made three key hires including Sarah Ramey, formerly in charge of video production and development for Gawker, as head of content.

Margaritaville Media, led by former YouTube exec Laura Lee, also has tapped Sam Keene, who previously worked at NASCAR and Red Bull, as head of digital marketing and platforms; and Talar Sarkissian, formerly with mobile-video app startup SpeakUp, as head of business development and operations. All three report to Lee, president of Margaritaville Media and chief digital officer.

Under the direction of Lee, Margaritaville Media is attempting to expand the reach of the Buffett-inspired brand to younger demographics with video series, editorial and branded content, as well as immersive digital experiences.

“With Sarah’s deep content capabilities across digital, TV and film, Sam’s proven leadership in building digital audiences for lifestyle brands and Talar’s strong operational experience, we are perfectly positioned to take Margaritaville Media to the next level and grow our company’s social presence,” Lee said in announcing the hires. “We look forward to creating fun and escapist content that continues to inspire our younger fans to embrace the Margaritaville lifestyle.”

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Escape to Margaritaville Musical to premiere May 2017

From the Hollywood Reporter: “Jimmy Buffett Musical Sets San Diego Premiere

‘Escape to Margaritaville’ will feature both original songs and the singer’s classic tracks.

It turns out Margaritaville is pretty close to Los Angeles.

The new Jimmy Buffett musical will have its world premiere at the La Jolla Playhouse in the San Diego area, producers Frank Marshall, Mindy Rich, Anita Waxman and Beth Williams announced Monday.

The limited engagement will begin previews on May 16, 2017, ahead of its opening night on May 28, and will play through June 25.

Officially titled Escape to Margaritaville, the musical will feature both original songs and Jimmy Buffett classics. It tells the story of a tropical island resort and its charming bartender-singer who falls for a beautiful, career-minded tourist.

The show will include an original story by co-book writers Greg Garcia (creator of My Name Is Earl, Raising Hope and Yes, Dear) and Mike O’Malley (Yes, Dear and Glee), with Tony Award nominee Christopher Ashley (Memphis, Xanadu) on board to direct. The creative team also will include choreographer Kelly Devine, scenic designer Walt Spangler, costume designer Paul Tazewell, lighting designer Howell Binkley and sound designer Brian Ronan.

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Mississippi legislators working on bill for ‘Buffett Beach’

From “House passes bill to name Pascagoula beach `Buffett Beach’

Mississippi legislators are working to name a Gulf Coast beach for the native son who wrote and sang “Margaritaville.”

Representatives voted 119-1 on Monday to pass House Bill 886, which would designate a sandy stretch in Pascagoula as Buffett Beach.

Singer-songwriter Jimmy Buffett was born in Pascagoula and grew up in Mobile, Alabama.

The 69-year-old Buffett also wrote “Cheeseburger in Paradise” and “Changes in Latitudes, Changes in Attitudes.”

The beach-naming bill moves to the state Senate for more debate.

Last September, the Pacagoula City Council voted to name a bridge along the beach in honor of Buffett, who attended a dedication ceremony and performed for the crowd.

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Jimmy Buffett Musical to Premiere in San Diego

From the San Diego Union Tribune: “La Jolla Playhouse to premiere Jimmy Buffett musical”

From the Parrotheads (and musical-theater fans), get ready: Margaritaville is moving to San Diego.

La Jolla Playhouse is announcing this morning that a new, as-yet-untitled musical featuring the music of Jimmy Buffett will have its world premiere at the theater in May 2017.

The show’s producers had announced in December that Christopher Ashley, the Playhouse’s artistic chief, would direct the project. But now the musical will officially launch at the theater that has sent more than two dozen productions to Broadway.

Production dates are set for May 16 to June 25, 2017. Don’t line up for tickets just yet, though: They’ll initially be available solely via 2017-18 season subscriptions, and right now the Playhouse is only selling subscriptions for its 2016-17 season.

Although there’s no word at this point on what specific songs the musical will include, it will offer a mix of Buffett classics and original songs. (In case you somehow missed his work over the past four-plus-decades, Buffett’s most popular tunes include “Come Monday,” “Cheeseburger in Paradise,” “Changes in Latitudes, Changes in Attitudes,” “A Pirate Looks at Forty” and, of course, the 1977 hit “Margaritaville.”)

Producers also have revealed a bit more information about the storyline of the show, centered not just on the music but on the good-time vibe of the massively popular Buffett, whose devoted followers proudly dub themselves “Parrotheads”.

The musical, written by the television pros Greg Garcia and Mike O’Malley, “is the story of a part-time singer, part-time bartender and full-time good ol’ boy named Tully who suddenly finds himself in uncharted territory — falling in love with a beautiful, career-minded tourist.” (Which sounds more than a little like a backstory to the lyrics of “Margaritaville.”)

The show is produced by special arrangement with Frank Marshall, Mindy Rich, Anita Waxman and Beth Williams, Broadway veterans who among them have numerous connections to past Playhouse shows.

There’s no official word at this point on potential Broadway prospects for the show, although based on those commercial producers’ involvement, you can bet that Buffett has trained his pirate eye on New York.

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Top Buffett News Story of 2015

It’s been another busy year for Jimmy Buffett. Help us with the top story for 2015 by voting for your favorite.

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