The Tropical Troubadours of Florida
By Kelly Dean
I enjoy seeing people making their living performing as “one-man-bands” in the restaurants and clubs of Florida. They are almost ubiquitous; except sometimes, all-week performances are reserved for snowbird season and weekends-only when it’s out of season. This is not always the case and some establishments have enough business to have performers from noon until close.
Their onstage rig generally consists of a guitar, digital keyboard, some kind of electronic rhythm accompaniment, or they might just do the karaoke thing as singers. Their song lists are generally enormous and can do requests.
Sometimes there are two or three performers, but this is a band and they are usually found on the weekends in larger establishments or during festivals. Single street musicians playing for tourists are common at this time as well.
Bar patrons can expect generally classic pop music from the 60s, 70s and 80s in those places catering to those age groups. But Jamaican steel bands, mariachi, soul, jazz and blues can also be found frequently by accident – but especially if you seek it out.
In homage to those who are reFLocating and doing what they love to make a living, here are a few I’ve encountered recently who were kind enough to allow me to take their picture and publish it here. Be sure to tip.