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Jam Cruise 3

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I wonder if the Dead had any idea what they were starting when they created an alternative world that professionals, politicians and other generally upright types could escape to periodically without much fear of recrimination. The Deadhead sticker on the Cadillac doesn’t draw a second thought these days.

Carrying on that tradition of gentile temporary bohemia is Jam Cruise, soon to be bookng its third incarnation:


    Jam Cruise 1 and 2 were crowning achievements within the changing face of music festivals and cruise travel. Now, the original Jam Cruise announces Jam Cruise 3, leaving port in Jacksonville, Florida on January 6, 2005 for 4 days aboard Carnival Cruiselines’ Celebration.

    Jam Cruise 3 will stop in Freeport, Bahamas and, fulfilling a popular request on a questionnaire filled out by last year’s cruisers, will offer passengers two full days at sea. The Celebration accommodates 1500 passengers (double the size of the Regal Empress cruise liner used for 1 and 2), and boasts such luxury amenities as 3 pools, nine passenger decks, ten lounges, a twenty-four-hour pizza bar and dinnertime sushi bar, a health spa, and large and comfortable lodging facilities. The fans spoke up and Jam Cruise organizers have listened.

    Jam Cruise 3 will host over thirty music performances, featuring fifteen bands from one of today’s most thriving music communities – that of improvisational music. The current line up includes Galactic, Karl Denson’s Tiny Universe, STS9 (Sound Tribe Sector 9), Col Bruce Hampton and the Aquarium Rescue Unit (1st show in 10 years!), Ozomatli, North Mississippi Allstars, Peter Rowan & Tony Rice, Robert Walter’s 20th Congress, Umphrey’s McGee, MOFRO, Benevento/Russo Duo, DJ Logic , with more artists to be announced soon. In addition to incredible performances by many of the genre’s most celebrated musical pioneers, the Jam Cruise experience promises once-in-a-lifetime artist collaborations and opportunities for hang time with the musicians who are so often inaccessible backstage.

    The musicians and the audience who were on board for Jam Cruise 1 and 2 remember the festival fondly. Billy Nershi of The String Cheese Incident, who performed on Jam Cruise 1 with his side project, Billy and Liza, commented, “I was at first hesitant. I thought I’d get claustrophobic. But it turns out it was an absolutely amazing experience. It was really intimate and relaxed. Even the artists, who were there to work, felt like we were on vacation, and absolutely everyone on board that boat knew they were part of something really special.

    Cloud 9 Adventure’s Mark Brown, a partner in the vision and execution of Jam Cruise, recollects, “The whole event exceeded even our highest expectations. We were thrilled to hear from feedback that the artists and the fans held the same sentiment. Jam Cruise 3 should be even better.” The next step in summer festivals and cruise travel is here.

    Tickets are expected to go quickly. On sale begins Wednesday, May 19 at 11:00 am MST. Cabin prices range from $550 to $1125.00 per person, plus port charges, service fees and gratuities. Call 303.544.0191 or go to the Jam Cruise site.

That’s taking the “booze cruise” theme to its farthest extension – sounds absolutely wild. That’s tremendous musical variety as well: from the bluegrass of Peter Rowan and Tony Rice, to the jammy jazz of Robert Walter and Karl Denson, to the true jam band groove of Galactic, to the electro beats of DJ Logic, to the Southern blues ‘n’ roll of the great North Mississippi Allstars – it’s a Bonnaroo in a box! This I would attend.

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About Eric Olsen