Jimmy Buffett’s laid-back music seems to have the ability to make almost anybody feel relaxed and right with the world—especially when combined with one or two of the singer’s signature margaritas.
Now Buffett’s feel-good vibe is being tested as never before. The singer, who is friends with both Nashville Mayor Bill Purcell and Gov. Phil Bredesen, says he’s committed to helping the politicians get along.
“Good [expletive] luck,” says one political observer. “It’s going to take more than a change of latitude to change the attitudes of those guys.”
While locals with sensitive political antennae have long sensed a simmering antagonism, both men have denied the rumors.
“I have nothing but respect for the governor, and he has been available every time I’ve called on him,” Purcell grimly intones when asked for the thousandth time about his relationship with Bredesen.
“Mayor Purcell has done a good job, and I think most Nashvillians would say that,” Bredesen says.
But, improbably, the two men met for what may have been the first time at a Buffett show at Municipal Auditorium in the mid-1980s, when Bredesen was still in business and Purcell was starting out in the legislature representing East Nashville.
“They ended up next to each other by happenstance, and both were grooving to the music,” says a concert promoter who is familiar with the situation. “They were talking and it turned out both had the same favorite Buffett tune, ‘God’s Own Drunk.’ ”
Buffett, who once called Nashville home and whose music has been drifting more toward country lately, says he was moved to bring the men together after hearing pleas from friends.
“I’ve known these guys for years, and I’m going to talk to them, maybe play a few songs, have a few drinks,” Buffett says. “I just don’t like it when people aren’t getting along, especially if they’re fans of mine. There’s no such thing as a parrothead feud.”
Buffett is also in talks with the U.S. State Department to finalize plans for a concert tour in Israel and Gaza, which may lead to a renewed Middle East peace process.
(The Fabricator is satire. Don’t believe everything you read.)