Island Hopper: Rock on
Published 11/07/2007 at 1:03 p.m.
Most people have visceral memories of important childhood events, almost like mental snapshots or home movies of formative experiences.
Island Hopper: A tribute to an unforgettable Crandall
Published 10/31/2007 at 1:24 p.m.
Some artists find a way to reach people that goes beyond just their art. It seems like no matter where I go these days, people want to come talk to me about Tim Crandall, the singer and guitarist who passed ...
Island Hopper: A bloody good idea for All Hallows Eve
Published 10/24/2007 at 1:14 p.m.
The crispness in the air, the shorter days, the stores filled to the rafters with tinsel and glitter and boughs of evergreen can mean only one thing, dear readers... Halloween is upon us once again!
Island Hopper: The evolution of music in Southwest Florida
Published 10/17/2007 at 12:56 p.m.
Most movements, when they begin, start so small that at first there’s no way of detecting it’s actually part of a wave of something bigger.
Island Hopper: Nevada is only a few minutes away
Published 10/10/2007 at 1:07 p.m.
It was not a happy Sunday afternoon. Your Island Hopper was feeling a bit stressed this past weekend. Pressing deadlines, a slew of chores to be done, and feeling a bit behind the eight ball with work had all combined ...
Island Hopper: There’s a first time for everything
Published 10/03/2007 at 9:46 a.m.
When the Island Hopper is not hopping about Marco seeking entertainment for your delectation, she has a full and rich social life among friends.
Island Hopper: Change is good
Published 09/26/2007 at 11:15 a.m.
Change is a funny thing. I’m writing my column this week for the first time on a laptop computer. Yes, your little Island Hopper is rather severely behind the technological times, as up until this week I have also been ...
Island Hopper: Good clean fun
Published 09/19/2007 at 10:58 a.m.
Your little Island Hopper is a big fan of the unexpected (with few exceptions — like when Freshen Up gum first came out, and I bit into it, all unknowing, and nearly upchucked when the burst of sticky gel coated ...
Island Hopper: In memoriam: Tim Crandall
Published 09/12/2007 at 11:38 a.m. 3 Comments
If the local music scene seems to have a little less color to it in the weeks and months to come, there’s a reason. Longtime local favorite entertainer Tim Crandall passed away suddenly a week ago, and friends, fans, and ...
Island Hopper: Blame it on Simon Cowell
Published 09/05/2007 at 9:49 a.m.
Maybe it all started with reality TV in general — the idea that any one of us not only can be a star, but should be. But I like to blame Simon for the phenomenon for a couple of reasons. ...
Island Hopper: Cross the bridge for that Latin beat
Published 08/29/2007 at 12:02 p.m.
You know, for a gal who serves as an entertainment reporter here in our little corner of the world, I find I spend a rather inordinate amount of time pondering the bigger picture.
Island Hopper: Barry Newman makes friends with the devil
Published 08/23/2007 at midnight
Today, dear readers, your little Island Hopper is pensive. I find I have spent much of the afternoon musing about art, and the artist, and the compromises one must make to pursue a craft in which only a tiny minority ...
Island Hopper: Finally, a local bluegrass destination
Published 08/15/2007 at 1:23 p.m.
Onstage there are two acoustic guitars, an upright bass, a banjo. The room is packed with people, standing room only, with those who didn’t arrive early enough to be sitting at tables crowding into the bar area, the back hallway, ...
Island Hopper: Slow season picks up with high-energy Hilt
Published 08/08/2007 at 10:36 a.m.
Can you hear them barking, my friends? They’re here, and they’re here in full force: the dog days of summer. Not only is it hot enough to fry an egg on my backside, but the coming of August and the ...
Island Hopper: Growing together in love, making beautiful music
Published 08/01/2007 at 12:35 p.m.
It’s a trend that may actually have started as early as Adam and Eve. A happy couple is lucky enough to find love. They revel in their togetherness and compatibility so thoroughly that, eventually, they decide that if their partnership ...
Island Hopper: Wasted away again in Singleton
Published 07/25/2007 at 11:38 a.m.
There’s a certain song your little Island Hopper hears lately everywhere she goes, and it’s time I started talking about it.
Island Hopper: Global warming and Rockin' Ray
Published 07/18/2007 at 10:19 a.m.
Call it global warming, call it the natural pattern of the geological rhythms, heck, call it the seventh sign, if you want. All I know is, this seems to me like the hottest summer I have experienced thus far in ...
Colorful and quirky ‘Dreamcoat’ falls short of amazing
Published 07/11/2007 at 1:36 p.m.
In Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice’s “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat,” Joseph is the first to sing out about how he’s got it goin’ on, not for a moment shy about letting everyone know — ad nauseam — ...
Island Hopper: Sister Kate: A Karen Carpenter for the new millennium
Published 07/11/2007 at 11:21 a.m.
I have a friend who is turning 40 today. I called her to wish her happy birthday, and she sounded listless and depressed. She’s having a bit of a time with it, apparently.
Band Q&A: As ‘Goods’ as it gets
Published 07/05/2007 at 8:27 p.m.
Piano player Michael Goods received his first keyboard in eighth grade, when Art Neville (one of the legendary Neville Brothers) gave him a spare he had lying around.
The Island Hopper: Loud, but not obnoxious
Published 07/03/2007 at 7:51 p.m.
They say familiarity breeds contempt. Sometimes, so posits the saying, we take for granted the things that are too readily available to us, that aren’t exciting and trendy and new. Take formerly local entertainer Myles Loud. A longtime fixture in ...
Band Q&A: The sultry sounds of Beth Thompson
Published 06/28/2007 at 7:28 p.m. 1 Comment
Beth Thompson was blessed with a voice that not only belts out across a room with startling range and power, but is the kind of tone that forces you to pay attention to the sultry, sexy singer whenever she takes ...
Island Hopper: Respect top-notch entertainment — like Joerey Ortiz
Published 06/27/2007 at 9:10 p.m. 2 Comments
When a girl spends as many years in the dating scene as your Island Hopper, she starts to develop a rulebook of sorts — a little how-to manual of relationships, a GPS guide, if you will, to navigating the often ...
Island Hopper: Messin’ with Texas and Tantrum
Published 06/20/2007 at 8:58 p.m.
By the time you see this, loyal readers, your little Island Hopper will be on a musical field trip, of sorts, in the Promised Land of Melody. Austin, Texas. Home of Austin City Limits and the South by Southwest Festival. ...
Band Q&A: David Moore is not a DJ
Published 06/14/2007 at 7:53 p.m.
Born in Newport, Rhode Island, drummer David Moore lived in Hawaii, Connecticut, and Southern California before finding his way to Florida in 1995. He’s familiar to Marco Islanders from past appearances at the Snook Inn, the Radisson Marco Pool Bar, ...
Island Hopper: Top-notch acoustics accompany Mike Courtney
Published 06/13/2007 at 8:38 p.m.
Two weeks ago I was standing outside Captain Brien’s restaurant after seeing comedian Drew Hastings, enjoying a lively conversation with some friends. I was trying to pay attention to the conversation. I really was. But I kept being distracted by ...
Band Q&A: Break on through to ‘the other side’
Published 06/07/2007 at 9:30 a.m.
They started as Otrolado, a name that translates to “the other side” or “the flip side.” Now the four-man Latin band is known as Caramelo Station (“because caramel is the point where sugar is at its sweetest,” front man Abisier ...
Island Hopper: The comedy ‘stylings’ of Drew Hastings
Published 06/06/2007 at 12:11 p.m.
Comedy, so comic master Steve Martin told us way back in 1979, is not pretty. That’s also Drew Hastings’s theory of the craft: “All comedy comes from pain, in my opinion and theory,” says the stand-up comedian with his trademark ...
Band Q&A: From the pan flute to bass pedals; Mark Wesley is a man of variety
Published 05/31/2007 at 11:52 a.m.
Originally from Lansing, Michigan, Mark Wesley followed the long trail of I-75 pioneers to Florida 20 years ago, when his father told him there was money to be made fishing in the keys.
Island Hopper: Of banjos and not-so-blind dating
Published 05/30/2007 at 10:48 a.m.
In a sheer bizarre coincidence, several of my closest friends happen to also be involved in mediac — radio, television, newspapers. I didn’t meet them through my job, but like some great cosmic magnetic media force, we all somehow gravitated ...
Band Q&A: Hehr today, someone else tomorrow
Updated 05/24/2007 at 3:15 p.m.
With his unusual blend of singing, impressions, and stand-up comedy, entertainer Harley Hehr isn’t quite like anyone else on the Rock.
Island Hopper: Gettin’ down and dirty at SoapFest
Updated 05/23/2007 at 4:14 p.m.
When I was a younger gal, the shows that seduced me into their world were reruns of programs that had passed their initial popularity and were enjoying a new life on the UHF channels: Big Valley, The Love Boat. The ...
SoapFest cleans up
Published 05/21/2007 at 6 a.m.
“She stole your virginity 25 years ago!” It could have been a line lifted right from a soap opera — pardon: daytime drama — but instead it was a real-life fan excitedly accusing All My Children’s Susan Pratt at SWFL ...
D.L.Turner -- something to harp about
Published 05/17/2007 at 5:01 p.m.
I was playing my grandmother’s tennis racket with a string wrapped around my neck. I finally wore out the strands on the racket and they thought that maybe we should get the boy a guitar
You're in my heart, George Orr, you're in my soul
Published 05/16/2007 at 6:05 p.m.
Orr is a talented man with a great gimmick and the ability to capitalize on it, but bring back the cheeky, electrified performer who relished his job and brought everyone else along on his good time!
Band Q&A: It’s a Wonderful life
Updated 05/10/2007 at 4:14 p.m.
Wonderful Johnson is one of the few all-live, all-local, and predominantly original-music bands of our area. After the release of their first CD, Authentic Memphis Samwich, in 2003, they’ve been quiet on the recording front — until this week, with ...
Island Hopper: LaGrotta’s did Cinco de Mayo quite well, thanks!
Updated 05/09/2007 at 3:15 p.m.
I’m not sure if it’s everybody else or just me. But I haven’t seemed to be able to lose my child-like excitement about holidays. (I haven’t been able to lose many child-like attributes, some of which I like to think ...
Band Q&A: From country to rock, Fakahatchee delivers boot-stompin’ good time
Published 05/03/2007 at 8:09 p.m.
You won’t find them in many of the smaller bars around town, because the country band Fakahatchee makes a whole lot of sound — and they usually appear at larger events like the Country Jam, the Cattlebarons Ball, and the ...
Island Hopper: Taste of Marco should happen every weekend!
Updated 05/02/2007 at 3:15 p.m.
This was the prospect presented to your little Island Hopper this past glorious Sunday afternoon: to spend the day in the sunshine by the water, a profusion of delicious food available to me at every turn, and perhaps a cold ...
Island Hopper: One-man-band Mark Wesley is more
Updated 04/25/2007 at 3:14 p.m.
Life, challenging little drama that it is, often throws our way times of privation, disappointment and frustration, thwarted hopes and unrealized dreams. On the flip side — the whole reason that we keep squeezing away when life has been throwing ...
Band Q&A: Thirsty Howell talks about The Castaways
Updated 04/19/2007 at 3:14 p.m.
If you want to have a good time with Reggie Fecteau, Ralph Anthony, and Thirsty Howell, you can either go see them play as the three-piece band The Castaways at Porky’s the first Saturday of every month, or you can ...
Island Hopper: Michelle Martin gets ‘em dancing — at least the women folk
Updated 04/18/2007 at 4:15 p.m.
I have a confession to make. I like to watch. Oh, not that kind of watching, my naughty readers. I simply enjoy observing people — how they behave, how they interact, how they act when they think no one is ...
Band Q&A: Williams dynamite as half of duo TNT
Updated 04/12/2007 at 3:15 p.m.
Tyrone Williams is perhaps better known to local audiences as half of the popular R&B duo TNT, who have appeared all over Marco Island for the last 12 years.
Island Hopper: Drums, a wide range and a talent for filling the room
Updated 04/11/2007 at 5:14 p.m.
I was mocked this past weekend. Well and truly mocked, and by a family member, no less! (Although the most truly effective mocking is always best delivered by those who’ve known you longest.)
Band Q&A: Traveling trio comes right to your table
Published 04/05/2007 at 10:25 a.m.
If you’re a fan of bluegrass and Americana music, chances are you’re familiar with Louis Salvatore. The multitalented musician is the father of the popular American Folk Trio that plays seemingly everywhere from Fort Myers to Marco Island.
Island Hopper: Idle hands: Stan’s packs them in on Sunday
Published 04/04/2007 at 10:35 a.m.
Sunday afternoon, to me, is a magical time. For most of us working stiffs, it’s the cherry on top of a week of hard work, a chance to lap up the sunshine on a beautiful local beach, or to lazily ...
Band Q&A: Duncan Wheeler loves his strumming job
Updated 03/29/2007 at 3:15 p.m.
If you’ve lived on Marco Island long enough, then chances are that Duncan Wheeler first grabbed your attention as one of the friendly faces behind the bar at the Snook Inn.
Island Hopper: Losing yourself in the music
Updated 03/28/2007 at 6:12 p.m.
Well, dear readers, I'm back yet again from my semiannual camping trip/music festival, and as always, I'm far cleaner today than I was at any time this past weekend.
Band Q&A: Husband and wife team have a Damn good time
Updated 03/22/2007 at 2:15 p.m.
Norm and Debbie Pelletier know how to put on a show. The couple have been performing together for over 20 years, most of them as husband as wife, as the duo Hot Damn, and when they take the stage they’re ...
Island Hopper: Sandcastles is an odd little anomaly
Published 03/22/2007 at midnight
I have a memory from many years ago, as a fresh-faced young college student barely past legal drinking age, of sauntering into a bar with my friend, Michael, for the late-night happy hour.