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SOBEWFF: Sammy Hagar Rocks the Tent; Emeril Is a Groupie

Hey Red Rocker, why so blue?
Hey Red Rocker, why so blue?
All photos by Laine Doss

The crowd at Emeril Lagasse and Sammy Hagar's Rockin' Beach Party was electric with anticipation. Would Hagar, a '80s rock icon, really sing Led Zeppelin? Would Jason Bonham play drums during the set? Does the Red Rocker still have great hair?

See also: Sammy Hagar Brings Cabo Wabo Tequila to SOBEWFF

SOBEWFF: Sammy Hagar Rocks the Tent; Emeril Is a Groupie

Since the answers wouldn't be divulged until 11 p.m., people contented themselves with eating Elena Ruz sandwiches and chicken empanadas from Versailles restaurant and drinking Sammy Hagar's Cabo Wabo Tequila and Sammy's Beach Bar Rum under the South Beach Wine & Food Festival's party tent that was transformed into what can only be described as "electric tiki."

SOBEWFF: Sammy Hagar Rocks the Tent; Emeril Is a Groupie

Neon-bright palm trees towered over the masses snacking on croquetas, playing volleyball and bocce, or sipping on libations.

SOBEWFF: Sammy Hagar Rocks the Tent; Emeril Is a Groupie

From crisp Strongbow cider served on the rocks to Amstel Light to plenty of rum and tequila served as shots and shooters, there were multiple ways to drink like a rock star.

SOBEWFF: Sammy Hagar Rocks the Tent; Emeril Is a Groupie

The best spirit of the evening was Hagar's own Red Head. This ruby-colored rum is flavored with macadamia nuts, tropical fruits, and vegetables.

 

SOBEWFF: Sammy Hagar Rocks the Tent; Emeril Is a Groupie

Emeril's contribution to the evening, a cocktail called the Sand Dollar, was custom shaken. Made with Sammy's Beach Bar rum, maraschino liqueur, fresh lime, Monin almond syrup, and Fee Brothers bitters, it was a sweet, pink liquid confection.

SOBEWFF: Sammy Hagar Rocks the Tent; Emeril Is a Groupie

If you were looking for Mr. Lagasse once Hagar took the stage, you'd only have to glance over at the stairs off stage left, where the chef remained the entire time, singing along to his buddy and acting like a total groupie.

SOBEWFF: Sammy Hagar Rocks the Tent; Emeril Is a Groupie

Speaking of groupies, when the band started playing, all food and drink was immediately forgotten as the Red Rocker lived up to his name, belting out a mix of his best like "I Can't Drive 55," "Right Now," "Finish What You Started," and "Why Can't This be Love," along with some classic Zeppelin like "Been a Long Time." After a particularly long and intricate solo, Jason Bonham pointed up at the sky in a touching tribute to his father John Bonham, one of the greatest drummers in rock 'n' roll history.

Tell me, why can't this be love?EXPAND
Tell me, why can't this be love?

At the end of the set, Emeril rushed the stage to give his friend a bear hug as the audience roared with delight. Hagar proved that he can still rock with the best of them. And his hair? Like his voice, it "stood the test of time."

Follow Laine Doss on Twitter @LaineDoss and Facebook.

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