Bandit Lights Up the Night at Star-Studded Jimmy Buffett Tribute Concert

LOS ANGELES, CA – It was a night that will go down in music history as legends took to the stage at the Hollywood Bowl to honor the late Jimmy Buffett. From The Eagles sharing the stage with Paul McCartney, stories from Harrison Ford, Jane Fonda, Don Johnson, Woody Harrelson and Judd Apatow, to performances from Mac McAnally and the Coral Reefer Band, Zac Brown, Brandi Carlisle, Jackson Browne, Sheryl Crowe, Jon Bon Jovi, Kenny Chesney, Pitbull, Snoop Dogg, Eric Church, Sheryl Crow, Jack Johnson and Dave Grohl, it was a fitting salute to the man who entertained his beloved “Parrotheads” for decades and who advised everyone to look on the lighter side of life.

Bandit Lites illuminated Buffett for thirty-eight years, and along the way, the camaraderie and loyalty among the crew created a family atmosphere.

“Tour Manager Charlie Fernandez called me in the mid 80’s and asked if I would like to work with Jimmy. Little did I know it would be such a long, amazing ride.” said Bandit Chair Michael T. Strickland. “Production Manager John Vanderslice, audio engineer Ross Ritto, Mike Ramos, Keno and all the Coral Reefers welcomed us with open arms. James “JT” Taylor, Sid Strong, the late great Steve Hoover and Chaz Martin were the amazing lighting designers we had the pleasure to work with over the years. Eroc Shafferman, Rick Munroe and Mike Stehr were the lighting crew for years. Jimmy was truly a family. Jimmy was a constant in life; the sun came up, the sun went down, and Jimmy Buffett always toured. Period.”

Bandit Lites provided renowned lighting designer Chaz Martin over 115 fixtures for the all-star night including Chauvet Maverick MK3 Spots, Chauvet Rogue R3 Washes, Chauvet Rogue RH1 Hybrids, Chauvet COLORado SoloBatten IP 65, GLP X4S and Showline Nitro 510C, all in Tyler GT truss. Chaz worked his Magic on two Chamsys MQ500 Stadium Consoles.

“Production Manager Ken Graham guided the event with love and passion,” said Strickland. “Chaz Martin was at the top of his game at the Hollywood Bowl. His art was stunning. Chaz captured the spirit of Jimmy in every moment, and I am sure Jimmy was smiling down. That night was pure magic. Chaz and I go back 40 years to REM, and he is one of my best friends. I will never forget that night!”

“There will never be another like Jimmy,” shared Harrison Ford after recalling how Buffett inspired him to get his ear pierced. “Usually, cool guys ae not that nice. Jimmy was more than nice: He was kind. He was beloved by his family, by his friends, by his crew and his collaborators, and he loved them all back.”

The night culminated in a rousing performance of “Margaritaville,” with everyone taking to the stage, some with glasses in hands, to close out the night, including Sir Paul with the biggest glass of all.

Amidst all the celebration and stories, there was a note of somberness as everyone recalled the loss of Jimmy. McCartney relayed to the crowd earlier he had sung “Let it Be” to Jimmy the night before he passed. The audience was full of every dignitary in the industry, from film, television, and live entertainment as they were all there to celebrate and say farewell.

“I had known Jimmys condition for some time, but he passed earlier than many expected,” Strickland reflected. “He was a soldier to the end. We all knew Jimmy was gone, but it was never real for me. He created a lifestyle and a charm that still survives. That night, when the Coral Reefers took the stage and the lights came up, it was all there: the band, the stage set, the videos and the music. But there in the middle, downstage center, one thing was missing: Jimmy. It was at that moment it all became real to me. We will keep the party going, but we can never replace Jimmy.”

“I would like to thank Charlie Fernandez, Howard Kaufman, Howard Rose, Irving Azoff, and the entire Band and Crew for one hell of a good time,” ended Strickland. “And most of all, thank you to Jimmy for the ride of a lifetime. We will miss you, my friend!”

About Bandit Lites, Inc.

Bandit Lites is a full-service design, management and producer of live events, theatrical productions, and live shows. Bandit Lites has a full staff of highly trained professionals to deal with all types of production needs. Bandit’s presence will ensure seamless transitions no matter where your next show takes you. More information available at

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