Tuesday, June 29, 2021

The Buckinghams Missed the Boat for 2022 Flower Power Cruise—Want to See Them in 2023?

Well, it’s just one of those things that happens in the world of classic rock concerts. The Buckinghams were originally scheduled to be on the 2020 Flower Power Cruise, but sadly, they’re not on the recently rescheduled 2022 Flower Power Cruise.

We’d all gotten excited in early 2020; the wonderful folks at Star Vista Cruises had their terrific promo set up and they’d even done an interview with Carl about what fun everyone would have again. Tragically COVID-19 hit our country and devastated many lives, which we still are lamenting today from our sincere losses of precious loved ones.

Without a doubt, whether COVID impacted your home personally or you immediately quarantined voluntarily or otherwise, we can agree that our worlds as we once knew them, all froze for about 18 months while we waited for a cure via vaccines.

Like just about every other business, the entertainment industry screeched to a halt, impacting everyone from the concertgoers to performers to agents to talent buyers and bookers to venue owners and food vendors.

It’s been a difficult time for all of us, but we are welcoming a careful return to enjoying live music. With all concerts on “hold” for at least 18 months, as we’ve all seen, rescheduled concert dates are “subject to change” even now, so we’re not anywhere near back to normal.

And yet, in the case of the 2022 Flower Power Cruise, the team who presents these annual cruises had already filled out their proposed 2021 Flower Power Cruise, which had an essentially different group of entertainers. That's how far in advance they plan for this now 5th annual concert year for this Star Vista cruise series.

Even the Concerts at Sea from Harmon Travel were landlocked and drydocked, but they're all filled out for 2022 with some of your other favorite bands.

So, in the Flower Power Universe, the 2020 cruise was halted, then the 2021 cruise was delayed, both due to COVID, so you have two full lineups as the total pool of bands from which to make up the band list for the 2022…meaning some of the bands previously booked aren’t going to make the cut. A few bands were booked for both 2020 and 2021.

Whom to choose? Whom to leave on the dock? Trying to see it, not from a music fan side, but from a corporate perspective, one looks at the profitability of the cruise. Because of tremendous bookings over the past years, and customer satisfaction with programming the acts, these cruises all sell out, everyone’s happy, and everyone goes sailing down the seas, right? Maybe, or perhaps not. What about the bands someone for the 2020 cruise wanted to see? Some didn’t make the cut, and that’s unfortunate.

Sadly, many people had purchased their tickets because they wanted to see The Buckinghams, in particular, in addition to other beloved classic rock bands and even some tribute acts who you'd swear were the real deal.

Active in promoting the (then) upcoming 2020 cruise that was first postponed until 2021, you’ll see Carl Giammarese interviewed by Cruise Host Jason Venner in the “All Access Pass Interview with Carl Giammarese, April 2020” video. The StarVista channel has close to 4,000 YouTube subscribers. Here is the nice memory of that video:

Here’s the inaugural 2016 Flower Power Cruise with The Buckinghams (18,000 views):

From their 2018 appearance in the 3rd anniversary Flower Power Cruise, here’s Nick Fortuna with "Time Won't Let Me": Click here to watch.

That was, of course, a song made famous originally by the more recently re-formed band, “The Outsiders” (with both Tom King and Sonny Geraci, who also sang for Climax and the Grass Roots in his career, having entered Rock ‘n Roll Heaven in 2011, and 2017, respectively), original drummer Rick Biagola (Baker) and three popular musicians from Cleveland, who are now keeping their music alive. The Outsiders were booked for the cruise for 2020 and 2021, and will make it onto the 2022 tour.

Here’s another fun video that features a “British invasion party” with The Buckinghams at the 2:29 mark:

Click [here] to watch; Go to 2:29 in this 2:53 video.

As it stands, the 5th Anniversary 2022 Flower Power Cruise, sailing March 28–April 4, 2022, from Miami, FL, to Puerto Plata, San Juan, and Labadee, includes the following acts (the official website notes “artist lineup subject to change, pending availability”):

Cruise Host Peter Asher

The Hollies

The Zombies

John Lodge of the Moody Blues

Felix Cavaliere’s Rascals

Procol Harum

The Guess Who

The Yardbirds

The Grass Roots

The Association

The Family Stone

Canned Heat

The Cowsills

The Box Tops

Mitch Ryder & The Detroit Wheels

The Outsiders

The Music of Cream

Kiss the Sky The Re-Experience: World’s Greatest Tribute to Jimi Hendrix

Magic Bus Band

Lisa Polizzi’s Janis Joplin Experience

Hal Bruce

The Newbees

The LSB Experience

The Hall of Fame Band

Tribute Artists Tim Stamper and George Trullinger

Beatle Brunch Radio Host Joe Johnson…and more!

Looking on the bright side, if you’d like to sail with The Buckinghams when they are booked on any/all rock and roll sailing cruises, why not leave a note here on Facebook? You never know when openings are going to happen on several different rock and roll ocean cruises. Sometimes all it takes is a concert buyer seeing how much the fans really want a certain band on board for it to become a reality!

A recent posting on a Facebook page for Flower Power Cruise chat noted a substantial number of comments encouraging The Buckinghams as a band to include, particularly for their willingness to mix and mingle and truly visit and hang out with the patrons who bought the tickets to do meet and greets. The cruise experience is so much more enhanced when people you've listened to for years on your radio dial are suddenly across the table from you with time to chat and willingness to sign autographs and pose for photos. The Buckinghams are among the most personable, fans said all across the board.

Let your voice be heard if you want to see The Buckinghams on a future celebrity concert cruise. Add a note to this Facebook post if you do! Maybe they'll be sailing with you sooner than later. As with all concerts, the opinions and voices of fans really do make the difference. If you're not on the 2022 Flower Power cruise and if you're near Shippensburg, PA, you can hear The Buckinghams in concert at the Luhrs Center on March 26, 2022. Sail on over to Shippensburg and get your rock and roll party started!