“Margaritaville” singer Jimmy Buffett dies at age 76

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It’s a sad day in Margaritaville. Legendary musician Jimmy Buffett passed away Friday, September 1 at age 76.

“Jimmy passed away peacefully on the night of September 1 surrounded by his family, friends, music and dogs,” read the announcement on his website and social media. “He lived his life like a song till the very last breath and will be missed beyond measure by so many.”

Associated with feet-in-the-sand island vibes, Buffett was best known for such classic songs as “Margaritaville,” “Come Monday,” “Cheeseburger in Paradise” and “Why Don’t We Get Drunk.” He released over 30 records and was known for his almost constant touring schedule with his Coral Reefer Band, drawing a devoted fanbase, affectionately known as Parrotheads.

Buffett also dabbled in writing, releasing bestsellers Tales from Margaritaville in 1989 and Where Is Joe Merchant? in 1992as well as his own memoir, A Pirate Looks at 50, which was released in 1998. He also released the novels A Salty Piece of Land in 2004 and Swine Not? in 2008, as well as two children’s books, The Jolly Mon and Trouble Dolls, with his daughter Savannah Jane Buffett.

His music was also turned into a musical, Escape to Margaritaville, which debuted on Broadway in March 2018. Although the show closed after just 124 regular performances, a national tour launched in 2019. 

In addition to music, Buffett was well known for his many hugely successful business ventures, including restaurants like the Margaritaville Café, the now-defunct Cheeseburger in Paradise chain and LandShark Bar & Grill.

He also licensed the Margaritaville name for a line of tequila, foods, clothing and more, including hotels, cruises, and even retirement villages and casinos. And in 2006 he teamed up with Anheuser-Busch for a new beer line, LandShark Lager.

All of this and more helped land Buffett on Forbes’ World’s Billionaires List in 2023, with a fortune of $1 billion.

In July, Buffett made a surprise appearance at a Rhode Island concert headlined by songwriter and Buffett’s Coral Reefer Band bandmate Mac McAnally.  He’d previously canceled a show in May, informing fans that he’d been hospitalized to “address some issues that needed immediate attention.”

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