jimmy buffett

Jimmy Buffett performs on Aug. 23, 2009, at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City.

Ben Fogletto

Even without a free concert featuring Jimmy Buffett and Wilson Phillips, thousands of people might have shown up Saturday afternoon at beach in front of Resorts Casino Hotel.

It was a perfect late spring day with temperatures in the 80s. The wind blew in from the ocean and a few clouds in the sky occasionally gave cover to the crowd who showed up early and filled the beach for a free concert that also featured Andy Grammer and Mac McAnally.

Many of the people came to see him Buffett, including a legion of loyal Parrotheads. One man was in full pirate makeup and attire with a boat around his waist.

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Buffett is all about sand, surf and fun, and the crowd at the Saturday perfectly lived up to his philosophy. Beach balls flew through the air, and people standing the front of the stage through around plastic, inflated sharks.

Women were in bikinis, and many people were topless as beach chairs, umbrellas, sunscreen and suntan oll were plentiful.

“We were praying for two months for good weather,” said Mark Giannantonio, the president and CEO of Resorts, who came on stage to welcome the crowd at 1 p.m. “We planned this (beach concert) two months ago. After the opening of Margaritaville, we wanted to help jump start the summer season."

The opening Andy Grammer was well suited to start off the day of music. His music was pleasant, and he was personable on stage.

Grammer came on late at 1:34 p.m., but he made up for it by playing 17 songs during the course of an hour. Grammer came out strong right from the start with probably his best known tune as his opening number, “Keep Your Head Up.”

A singer-songwriter in the pop-rock mode, Grammer had enough time to thoroughly cover his self-titled debut CD, which was released in June.

Grammer said from the stage that he played a Jersey Strong benefit not too long ago, and that the crowd looked really good and back on its feet.

Besides the material from his debut CD, Grammer surprised the crowd with covers of Maroon 5’s “Sunday Morning” the No. 1 pop-hip-hop hit “Thrift Shop” and “We Found Love (In A Hopeless Place).”

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