ARTIST: Jimmy Buffett
TITLE: A White Sport Coat and a Pink Crustacean
YEAR RELEASED: 1973
CHART ACTION: #205, #43 Country
SINGLES: The Great Filling Station Holdup (#58 Country), They Don’t Dance Like Carmen, Grapefruit-Juicy Fruit, He Went to Paris
OTHER SONGS YOU MAY KNOW: Why Don’t We Get Drunk
LINEUP: Jimmy Buffett, Steve Goodman, Reggie Young, Doyle Gresham, Lump Williams, Mike Utley, Greg Taylor, Sammy Creason plus other session musicians
WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT: Buffett’s solo career begins anew, after a false start, and finds him moving towards his laid-back beach bum persona that he would perfect.
SOME WORDS, PHRASES AND CLAUSES ABOUT THIS RECORD: Buffett’s ‘real’ solo debut (I’ll explain later) finds him mostly working as a country troubadour singing shaggy dog story-songs and few ballads (including one of his most famous works).
At this point, he’s a decent narrator of some wacky adventures, as his ballads are a bit maudlin at times. Yet, “He Went to Paris” is one of his best ever songs, and it’s head and shoulders over the rest of the songs on the album.
This does contain later fan favorites like “Grapefruit-Juicy Fruit” (which is quite underrated) and “Why Don’t We Get Drunk” (which most definitely is not). Fans should know it basically was released for the country market, so there are pedal steels and fiddles abounding.
NOTES & MINUTIAE: Buffett had recorded two solo albums for another label (Andy Williams’ Barnaby Records) in 1970 and 1971. These were more in a conventional folk singer-songwriter mode – maybe like James Taylor-lite. The first one, Down to Earth, sold dozens of records, literally dozens. Buffett delivered High Cumberland Jubliee to Barnaby, but somehow they said ‘they lost the tapes’.
Funny how when Buffett became a star, the tapes of that album were found!
One of my good friends who is a Buffett fiend said to pass on those, so I will. They are streaming, so explore at your own risk!
IS THERE A DELUXE VERSION: No
GRADE: B: An enjoyable country-rock story and ballad record that set him up for his later successes.