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Album Review

The best thing about Jimmy Buffett's Fruitcakes is the perpetually over-served Key Wester's Howard Beale impersonation on the album's title track. Like many of us, Buffett is angry about enormous movie theater sodas, crazy people walking around with mud in their eyes, and the screwy nature of modern religion and relationships. His gripe is delivered via a half-spoken ramble over a typical Caribbean lope that's as forgettable as it is recognizable. The song works not because it rehashes the same temperate groove, but because Buffett's rap sails so close to the infectious on-stage persona that's become his five-star meal ticket in recent years. The album's other standouts work for the same reason. A pastel cover of the Grateful Dead's "Uncle John's Band," the jaunty "Vampires, Mummies and the Holy Ghost," and "Lone Palm," which looks at life from under just such a tree, all ring with that faded T-shirt vibe so prevalent in Buffett's best work. Along with the touching daughterly tribute "Delaney Talks to Statues," these slices of Fruitcakes further the fantasy of landlocked Parrotheads everywhere, the one that makes that final margarita okay, banishes winter to an old tin can, and shakes white sand into every crevice of the office cubicle. Earnest ballads like "Love in the Library" are nice, but Buffett's cheeky rhymes and effectively simplistic playing just can't support them with the sophistication — or seriousness — they deserve. His Panama Jack pirate act is a one trick pony, no question. But it has limitless legs and is continually sold on the fact that everyone wants to be Jimmy Buffett some of the time. Fruitcakes' most memorable morsels make this wish come true, if only for a few surf-soaked minutes.

Customer Reviews

Spongebob's Mother

Uncle John's Band, Everybody's Got a Cousin in Miami, and Delaney Talks to Statues - three of the most musically diverse selections to be on a single album in 25 years. Buffetts rendition of The Grateful Deads "Uncle John's Band" is - without a doubt - one of the top ten Buffett concert tunes of all time. "Everybody's got a Cousin in Miami" - has so much range and musical quality - I feel back down there..... The soft and inspirational "Delaney Talks to Statues" - is just one of many great songs that Buffett has written about his children - beautiful!! Like I'm gonna take advice from a Spongebob Freak... Buy the CD - it's amazing

A solid Effort, and a return, of sorts

Everybody knows what Buffett's gig is, at this point, and you either dig it, or you don't. I don't think anyone has seriously ever touted Jimmy and his band as masters of their crafts (aside from Robert Greenidge on Steel Drums, Sonny Landreth on Slide, and Bill Payne (Liscence to Chill only) on Keys), nor do Parrotheads listen to Jimmy for "blistering solos". This album has all of the charm, sand and sun that you'd want from a Buffett album, and has a rootsier feel than any of his mid-to-late 80's stuff. You like Buffett? You'll like this. You more an Audioslave kind of person? You probably will not want this record. Thanks, Jimmy, for another fine album

Great Album!!!

This is truly a great album from Jimmy. It's not a mish mash of his classic hits. It's an original. There are several fantastic songs on this album. Two of my favorites that are never mentioned anywhere are "Quietly Making Noise" and "Delaney Talks to Statues." This is a great album and at this price it's a bargain. You can buy Jimmy's hits on any of ten different CDs but this is some original music.


Born: December 25, 1946 in Pascagoula, MS

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Jimmy Buffett translated his easygoing Gulf Coast persona into more than just a successful recording career -- he expanded into clothing, nightclubs, and literature -- but the basis of the business empire that kept him on the Fortune magazine list of highest-earning entertainers was his music. Born in southern Mississippi and raised in Alabama, Buffett moved to Nashville to try to make it in country music in the late '60s. After signing to the Barnaby label, he released one album, 1970's Down to...
Full Bio