Last Thursday, organizers announced that the fifth annual edition of Cayamo will take place February 5 to 12, 2012. And like previous excursions, it offers both spectacular destinations and a lineup that's clearly the envy of any festival confined to dry land.
According to the company's announcement, next year's headliners will include Lyle Lovett, John Hiatt, John Prine, Richard Thompson, Keb Mo, Buddy Miller, Loudon Wainwright, Iris Dement, Greg Brown, Shawn Mullins, James McMurtry, Chuck Cannon, Works Progress Administration (WPA), Aslyn, Enter the Haggis, and the Ryan Montbleau Band, with other acts to be announced in the coming months.
Most of these names are already familiar to the Cayamo crowd, particularly Miller, Mullins, Lovett, Hiatt, and WPA, all of whom have been regulars on previous cruises. Prine, Thompson, and Wainwright made seaworthy bows last month when they were added to Cayamo 2011. Others, like Brown, Keb Mo, and Dement will make their shipboard debuts. While the musical theme traditionally tends to lean towards Americana, the organizers have shown an increasing willingness to expand the musical parameters to encompass folk, pop, and Celtic.
The destinations also offer an expanded itinerary from previous years, with ventures into the eastern Caribbean and stops in St. Maarten, St. Barts, and the lesser-known Cayo Levantado in the Domican Republic. For the second year in a row, the ship of choice will be the Norwegian Pearl.
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Unlike other cruises, however, the ports of call often seem inconsequential. When it comes to Cayamo, it's clearly the journey that matters most, especially the soundtrack. At least that seems to be the attitude of the 2,000-plus passengers who are treated to more than 130 concerts over the course of a week. What's more, the Cayamo crowd, now a familiar family of fellow enthusiasts, turn the proceedings into a communal event, with as much faithful devotion as you'll see at Bonaroo, Stage Coach, Burning Man, or any landlocked fest.
Cayamo Cruise 2012 with Lyle Lovett, John Hiatt, John Prine, Richard Thompson, Keb Mo, Buddy Miller, Loudon Wainwright, Iris Dement, Greg Brown, Shawn Mullins, James McMurtry, Chuck Cannon, Works Progress Administration (WPA), Aslyn, Enter the Haggis, and the Ryan Montbleau Band. Sunday, February 5 to Sunday, February 12, 2012. Port of Miami, 1015 N. America Way, Miami. Tickets cost $1,235 plus $235 for tax and fees, as well as $12 per person per day for gratuities. (If a deposit is made by June 1 and paid in full within 72 hours, the passenger will be entitled to a 5-percent discount.) Call 877-379-9175 or visit cayamo.com.