Guest Sit-In of the Boat:

Perpetual Groove with Cody Dickinson | Photo by SuperDee

I had a really tough decision to make - lie out in the sun on the deck while listening to The Duo live just below me or duck inside to see my new favorite band Perpetual Groove. I managed to do a little of both. After sunning and enjoying an awesome set by The Duo featuring an impressive Sunny Michelson on vocals, I went inside to the Endless Summer Lounge where I walked into the end of one of my favorite tunes "Three Weeks." I was just in time to sing along at the end. It was a swirling, sweaty, afternoon set. Cody Dickinson (NMAS) came around, set up his pedals for his washboard, and joined the band for one of their epic jam vehicle songs, "Sundog." Whatever someone is supposed to do with a washboard plugged into a wawa pedal, Cody surpassed that, and it was a ridiculous run for everyone's money as they barreled towards the end of the tune. They had so much fun with Cody, they kept him onstage for "That Was Your Mother." Fun!

Cover song of the Boat:

Keller Williams at the Pool at Sunset
Photo by Michael Weintrob

Picture this scene: We had been on the water for just about 24 hours, the sun was setting, Aquarium Rescue Unit was raging inside in the Astoria Lounge, Keller Williams was singin' and loopin' by the Lido Pool for the freekers on the deck and in the pool. Keller was doing his finest medley when he drifted into the words, "Standing on the moon, I got no cobweb on my shoe." There is something about hearing a Jerry Garcia song... especially at sunset in the middle of the ocean at the greatest floating festival ever. Something happens and your moment becomes suspended in mid-air. There is no future, there is no past. Everything blends together into one big mushy pile of love. Right on, Keller!

I must make some honorable mentions here as there were a lot of new and creative cover songs. Notably, I loved Perpetual Groove's cover of Rupert Holmes' "Escape (The Pina Colada Song)." For some reason that got me all choked up! Also, one of my first musical moments on the boat was with the Jazz Mandolin Project (featuring Jon Fishman) and their great cover of Stevie Wonder's "Sir Duke." You can feel it all over! And the last I will mention here was the hilarious moment of walking in to see Les Claypool's Frog Brigade all dressed as sailors and Les in his freakish monkey mask, smacking his whamola, and doing a cover of "Wanna Be Like You (The Monkey Song)" from the "Jungle Book." Truly a primal moment.

Les Claypool's Frog Brigade and crowd | Photo by Dave Vann

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