The WMNF Tropical Heatwave Cruise

  • Tropical Heatwave Cruise
    February 22, 2018 - February 26, 2018
    3:00 pm - 9:00 am
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Aboard Royal Caribbean International’s Brilliance of the Seas a five day, four night cruise from Tampa to Cozumel, Mexico

with star Tropical Heatwave bands.  We chose artists who:

*turned in over-the top, fantastic performances at a recent Tropical Heatwave

*are delightful people with whom we would love to spend four days on a boat!

You can book the cruise here or call 877-530-4368

Chuck Prophet and Mission Express – Chuck  has been a WMNF favorite live artist for seventeen years. He has played six Tropical Heatwaves,  with famous sets featuring his steamy lyrics and musical creativity.   Chuck  has shaped his restless career (since playing as a teenager in Green On Red) with inimitable subtle flair: a vivid parade of razor-edged one-liners camouflaged in a slack-jawed drawl, songs about heartbreak and everyman heroism, drenched in the twisted lines of rude Telecaster. He shows no signs of slowing down creatively;  his 2017 album “Bobby Fuller Died For Your Sins”  is among his best.

The Bright Light Social HourFor anybody who wishes they could have experienced the golden age of psychedelic rock, these guys are equal to the power of that era.   The  band from Austin played their first of four Heatwaves in 2011 and their set in Crowbar that year ranks as one of the most exciting hours in the 36 year history of Tropical Heatwave.

photo by Tracy May

TBLSH  first gained attention in Austin from their incendiary live performances and innovative vision of rock and roll, melding southern rock, hard-dance, psychedelic blues, and deep-soul. Their  debut album led to heightening critical acclaim, national touring, and a rare sweep of six awards at the SXSW 2011 Austin Music Awards, including Band of the Year, Album of the Year, and Song of the Year (“Detroit”). The Bright Light Social Hour released a single in 2017 timed with the Trump inauguration, “Tear Down That Wall”, that’s received lots of WMNF airplay.  The band currently features Jack O’Brien on bass guitar and vocals, Curtis Roush on guitar and vocals, Edward Braillif on synthesizers and guitar, and Joseph Mirasole on drums.

Nikki Hill Band 

photo by Tracy May

Just a few years ago, Nikki Hill was a bartender with an affinity for punk and a deep love for classic R&B. At her husband (and now guitar-player) Matt Hill’s behest, she stepped out from behind the bar and onto the stage. The response has been ecstatic, and now the band tours the globe relentlessly, stunning audiences with their muscular sound, Matt’s volcanic leads, and, of course, Nikki’s inimitable charisma. We introduced her to the WMNF audience at a Rockabilly Ruckus and immediately signed her up for Tropical Heatwave.   What a set!  Buoyed by her band’s roaring boogie that’s equal parts Staple Singers and AC/DC, Nikki exudes a self-assured swagger as her fiery rasp preaches the rock & roll gospel: late nights, hot licks, and intoxicating love.

Sarah Borges and the Broken Singles –  To watch Sarah Borges strut and howl onstage is to participate in rock n roll communion, all glistening sweat and high kicks, soul-shaking and sassy antics. She’s a modern-day retro spitfire, red lipstick curled in a smirk as she summons her six-string to conjure a host of fiery spirits, leaving a stunned and ecstatic audience in her wake.     Sarah played three times at Heatwave, each set leaving legendary memories.  We are excited that Sarah is recording and reforming with her old band of many years, The Broken Singles,  who will accompany her on the cruise.

Trae Pierce & the T-Stones –   Grammy Award-winning bassist Trae Pierce is leading a wild new musical experience known as Trae Pierce & the T-Stones (TPTS). Defined by hard-edged funk and hip-hop mixed with rock and blues, TPTS has developed a high-energy live show with a modern feel that also recalls the unstoppable grooves of Bootsy Collins: they “wants to funk you up!” Trae is a world-class bassist and four-time Grammy Award-winner (with the legendary Blind Boys of Alabama) who cut his bass chops as a member of The Ohio Players.

From his Florida home, this bass “monster” has hand-picked a vibrant young group of musicians with limitless energy and extreme talent, and together they’ve been tearing up dance floors throughout the Southeast with a genre-blending twist of funk-rock rhythms that bring out the best in every beat. Trae is coming in concert for WMNF on August 5 if you want to get an awesome preview!

 Vanessa Collier Band  Vanessa Collier is one of the coolest young artists on the scene today; when she is on stage, all eyes are on her. Vanessa’s incredible talent, stage presence, and enchanting personality have made her an important new artist.  The captivating and multitalented blues vocalist, saxophonist, and songwriter was sensational at the 2016 Tropical Heatwave, and we invited her back for a Skipper’s show.   A forthcoming 2017 release on RUF is expected to raise her to greater recognition.


Have Gun, Will Travel  – 
We are excited that our longtime favorite Tampa Bay band is joining us on our first cruise. HGWT has a natural instinct for combining folk, pop, rock and classic country influences to create a sound all their own with infectious, sing-along choruses and refrains and incorporating songwriter Matt Burke’s interest in history.  HGWT has played countless WMNF events over the last ten years, including several Tropical Heatwaves (they had the biggest audience of any band at the 2015 Heatwave).  A full band, six-person version of Have Gun, Will Travel be on the cruise.

Rev. Billy C. Wirtz   –  Rev. Billy has been a WMNF favorite as a performer (three Heatwaves) and now listeners know him for his terrific Friday afternoon radio show,  Rev. Billy’s Rhythm Revival.  He will do a couple of sets of boogie-woogie blues and country and will also lead a couple of workshops on music history on the cruise. 

Starting from $698 (including port taxes and govt fees) For details and reservations contact AAA Travel 877-530-4368

The cruise leaves from the Port of Tampa, probably Terminal 3, in the Channelside area of downtown Tampa.
Suggested boarding time before 3pm (must be on by 3pm), and starts at noon. The cruise leaves at 4pm. But there is VIP check in and sparkling wine included in the package!
You will need a passport if you plan to get off in Cozumel, or per AAA Travel, a birth certificate with raised seal and government issued id will be acceptable for US citizens.
There will be opportunities to get together with other WMNFers and band members!
A deposit of $200 per person is due within 3 days of booking.  Final payment is due on or before November 20, 2017. You can make payments on it after the deposit!

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More information about this wonderful ship - You WILL NOT BE ABLE book for the Tropical Heatwave Cruise through this link! The WMNF cruise MUST be done through AAA Travel. But you can see the gorgeous ship and cabins!