Photo Credit: Derek Key via Flickr
One of the many reasons I jumped at the chance to come on board at EastCoast Entertainment was the opportunity to combine my passion for live music and customer service into an exciting daily job. Little did I know that within the first few weeks of my tenure at ECE I’d be traveling to historic “homesteads” and exotic resorts. All in the name of high-energy live entertainment!
A couple of weekends ago, I traveled with The Celebrity AllStars band to Atlantis Bahamas for a beach-side performance as part of a corporate retreat. We soaked up the sun, enjoyed the luxurious resort and capped off their set with an amazing fireworks display! Following is a behind-the-scenes rundown of the event.
I caught a noon flight out of Richmond and met several of the band members at the Atlanta airport. We introduced ourselves while enjoying overpriced (a trend for the weekend) airport bagels and much needed coffee. Like Richmond, the weather in ATL was gray and cold (42 degrees at takeoff). After a small delay, we boarded our plane and waved goodbye to winter weather. Upon arrival we began a weekend of first class treatment: we were guided to a private shuttle, handed a cold drink, and given a short tour of the island. We were awestruck by the beauty of the hotel and its surroundings. Over late night pizza, we dreamed about owning one of the multimillion dollar yachts parked in the harbor.
One of the most fascinating things about EastCoast bands, and Celebrity AllStars specifically, is that the same people playing your wedding or corporate party have also toured with giants in the world of music. I listened to band members swap stories about touring with Janet and Michael Jackson, trying out for Justin Bieber’s band and playing a cruise with legendary jazz saxophonist Dave Koz. Impressive!
Friday’s agenda began after lunch with a sound check on the beach. The band ran through their set, checked levels and enjoyed the view while dressed in Hawaiian shirts and flip flops! We ran back to the hotel to rest and shower, while ¾ of the band headed over to test out the Atlantis waterpark. I heard talk of a “leap of faith” drop in the middle of a waterslide and a slow moving lazy river. Tough workday!
After dinner we headed back to the beach for the show. The guests were already enjoying fine dining finger foods and the sounds of a local calypso band. The tiki torches were lit and bright colored headdresses were on full display. The band took the stage to polite clapping and an empty “dance floor” (made of sand), but it took less than 30 seconds of music to get everyone on their feet and moving along to the music. The band breezed through high energy covers from every decade. Guests enjoyed everything from Bruno Mars to Earth, Wind, and Fire backed by an amazing brass section and spurred on by the killer dance moves of vocalist John Mero. After masterfully working their way through a Motown medley they ended their set with “Don’t Stop Believin” amidst a shower of fireworks. Check out the video below for a quick glance at this spectacular ending!
All good things must come to an end and, unfortunately, early Saturday morning was that time for us. We caught an early morning breakfast buffet, packed our bags into the van (including a full drumset!), and headed back to the reality of post-snow ATL and Richmond. Until next time guys!