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Parrots bring the beach to Brooksville
By LOGAN NEILL
Published July 13, 2007
BROOKSVILLE - If you're looking to cater a formal affair, you're not likely to hire the De Lei'ed Parrots to provide the entertainment. After all, the very sight of the band members in their guitar-motif Hawaiian shirts, shorts and flip-flops doesn't blend too well with the tux-and-gown crowd.
However, if the occasion calls for breezy, laid-back music with a palm tree sway, the Parrots are the perfect fit.
"We're all about getting people to relax and have a good time," said band founder and percussionist Connie Church. "We try to offer them a little chance to escape their normal lives."
This Saturday, the trop-rock band will make its second pilgrimage to Brooksville's Bandshell Bash to again wow the audience with renditions of Jimmy Buffett tunes such as Cheeseburger in Paradise, Havana Daydreamin' and Margaritaville and other favorites.
Although Buffett's music makes up a good portion of the Parrots' repertoire, Church insists they aren't strictly a Jimmy Buffett tribute band.
"The music we play is mostly comes from the '60s and '70s," Church said. "Even though it's mostly covers, we try to put our own spin on it. For example, we worked up a reggae version of Folsom Prison Blues, which is kind of neat."
Since its launching in 2000, the band has become a formidable beach music act throughout Central Florida. A former purchaser for a Tampa hospital, Church now makes her living playing music at art and street festivals as well as at numerous corporate parties around the bay area.
"It's definitely a lot more enjoyable than having a regular job," Church said, adding that the group performs in configurations of two, three, four or five, depending on the job and the pay.
Perhaps the band's greatest gig came last November when it was hired to provide a set for Jimmy Buffett fans entering the Ford Amphitheater in Tampa. Church remembers the show with particular fondness.
"It was probably the most people we've ever played for at one time," she said. "It was great hearing all of them singing along with us."
IF YOU GO
The Hernando County Fine Arts Council will present De Lei'ed Parrots from 4 to 8 p.m. Saturday at the Hernando Park band shell. The July Bandshell Bash is free and will also feature an antique car and hot rod show, sidewalk vendors and other activities. Info: 754-4788.