Please read Jam Cruise Virgin No More for my recount of the first day on the boat.
Ok, I lied. We did find the Jam Room our first night, and were treated to Zach Deputy jamming the first night away. I also forgot that we ate dinner with The Heavy Pets, and we bonded over us all being Jam Cruise Virgins. They told us where the Jam Room was, how to get there, and that they’d be down there. Yes, this was the first day…
After an amazing first day on the boat, we woke to coffee that we remembered to order the night before, and lounged on our balcony far away from land, my iPhone didn’t get a connection, and I was beginning to feel the first signs of becoming unplugged. Phones were safely locked away in the safe and it was time to start this second glorious day.This day we figured out what the drink tickets were all about. You buy a packet of drink tickets, charge them to your room, and there is a slight savings on price. Not much, but a small savings. I had decidedly become addicted to the fruity cruise drink known as BBC – Bacardi, Baileys, Banana and Pina Colada mix all whizzed together into a smoothie. Oh my my my, delicioso! (I have become so enamored with this drink, that from here on out we make a BBC every Friday – BBC Friday – and celebrate in honor of Jam Cruise.)
The coolest part of Jam Cruise is that the most unexpected people show up. I met a friend who I had met at Warren Haynes’ Xmas Jam in 2010, and it was like no time had passed. I met friends whom I only see at Wanee, or any of the other festival folk I see year after year. The greatest thing was we were all on this boat together for the next 5 days, it was the ultimate festival.
OK – so this second day we found our place on the 2nd level on the pool deck. I slathered sunscreen on my hideously white body and drank my BBC’s while grooving to Keller and the Keels and Bruce Hornsby. The winds were intense, but the mere scene of warmth, water, cruise, lounging, drinking, music and dancing blew any issues of the wind from my mind.
Ivan Neville’s crew were set to play a Sly set on the pool deck, and they did a funky little bit until the rain came. They were troopers, Ivan didn’t want to leave the stage, but the rain came down quick and fast, and everyone scrambled. I was bummed that set was cut short.
We went for dinner at the buffet (pizza and pasta) and then went back to the cabin to get ready for the evening musical extravaganza.
So, there is a theater on the boat called Zebra Bar. And everyone wears zebra clothing in the Zebra Bar. This night, I wore my zebra shoes – 5 inch platform real zebra shoes, which I was only able to stand in for about an hour. We bounce our way down to the Zebra Bar – we have a definite idea now how to navigate around the boat, and the place is pumping with the Dead Kenny G’s. Raging. Hard. Fast. Furious. I’m loving it, in seventh heaven until George Porter Jr. shows up and raises this funk a notch. Or two.
We ran from the Dead Kenny G’s to see Galactic on the Pool Deck. The rain had passed, and these guys crush it. The pool deck was packed, but not too packed. I stayed on the side of the stage, behind the speakers so the music wouldn’t kill my ears. I tried to be aware of things like that. Me and my crappy ears…thank goodness for ear plugs.
Then we ran to the back of the boat for Eric Krasno’s Jam Room session where the Royal Family members were kicking back, jamming in perfect Jam Room style. Seriously, this room is chill, and funky and intimate. Did I say this whole cruise still felt intimate and accessible?
Then we hit a little bit of Umphree’s in the Purple Theater (Teatro Carlo Felice) and go for The New Mastersounds on the pool deck, and back to the Jam Room. Yes, it was a Magical Meredith Tour once again from the front of the boat to the back of the boat, up and down elevators, stairs and hallways.
The third day we got off the boat in Haiti. By this time, I had fully unplugged. Stay tuned!