By Ken Paulson
Delbert McClinton’s Sandy Beaches Cruise always offers a rich array of blues, R&B, rock and folk performers and the 2016 event continued the tradition. On board the Holland America Westerdam were Keb’ Mo’, the Mavericks, Marcia Ball, Jimmy Hall, Mingo Fishtrap, Alyssa Bonagura, Seth Walker, The Quebe Sisters, Band of Heathens, Teresa James and the Rhythm Tramps, Lee Roy Parnell, Fred Eaglesmith, Shelley King, Mike Zito, Big Joe Maher, Anson Funderburgh, Kevin Welch, Doyle and Debbie, Danny Flowers, Kree Harrison, Brian Dunne, the McCrary Sisters, Bruce Channel, Etta Britt, Clay McClinton, Lari White, Chuck Cannon, Red Young, Gary Nicholson, the Howlin’ Brothers, Spooner Oldham, Bob Dipiero, Tom Hambridge, World Famous Headliners, the Damn Quails, Halley Anna Finlay, Baillie and the Boys and the Bluz House Rockers.
That meant music most days from noon until 2 in the morning. You’ll find our review on our site. Here’s a sampling of photos from one very entertaining week:
Delbert McClinton is the host and ringmaster of the Sandy Beaches Cruise, opening and closing the week, and playing all over the ship throughout the trip.
Lari White had a busy week with two shows of her own, a songwriters session and…
Jimmy Hall, the former lead singer of Wet Willie, was back for the 18th year in a row.
There were newcomers as well. New York singer-songwriter Brian Donne confessed that given the talent on the ship, he half-expected to be turned away when he showed up to board the cruise.
Marcia Ball may have been the most collaborative artists on board. When she wasn’t playing her own sets or hosting Pianorama, she was sitting in with others. And when the ship docked in St. John…
… she showed up on stage here.
Alyssa Bonagura’s fine first set on the pool deck included guest performances by her parents Michael Bonagura and …
… Kathy Baillie of Baillie and the Boys.
Teresa James and the Rhythm Tramps put on great shows all week, including a Friday afternoon set moved indoors because of the only inclement weather of the week. The move inspired a very funny recollection of a very dark dive bar frequented by housewives in the middle of the afternoon.
Spooner Oldham., Danny Flowers and Bruce Channel span decades of great songwriting.
Red Young’s 5 p.m. dance parties in the ship’s lounge were always packed, fueled by Young’s deep setlist of Ray Charles songs.
Oklahoma band the Damn Quails made their Sandy Beaches Cruise debut this year.
On a ship where dancing was a near-constant, no one packed the dance floor like Raul Malo and the Mavericks.