There was a small break in the June rain at Juana's Pagodas award party and guests slowly began to move out from under the umbrellas. We were there to celebrate Juana's Pagodas win as a 2018 Top Florida beach bar.
We finally stepped away from the covered patio area and made our away across the bar to order a drink. That's when we heard a beautiful violin solo come from the band Coconut Radio -- it stopped us in our tracks.
It's not often we hear a violin in a beach bar band but when you have that and combine it with an acoustic guitar and beautiful harmonies, it added such a unique dimension to their sound. We were captivated and couldn't stop listening.
It's In The Family
Sue Kittredge and Steve Reeths both come from a musical family.
"My mother played the violin and she encouraged me to study classical violin at the age of 8," says Kittredge.
And almost everyone in Steve Reeths' house sang or played an instrument.
"My father was big into barbershop quartets and so we learned and sang a lot of harmony parts in the car on trips."
Early Beginnings In The Symphony
Kittredge landed her first professional gig in the symphony when she was still in high school! She went from playing in quartets and soloing classically to playing in a 5-piece bluegrass group where she met Reeths.
They had a few stops before Coconut Radio.
Reeths said, "I went from band geek to folkie to folk rocker to bluegrass to pop country to jam band to Coconut Radio--whew."
About Coconut Radio
The name Coconut Radio refers to Gilligan's Island. The duo was new to the panhandle and wanted to create a band name that was tropical and fun!
"The Professor could whip a coconut radio up for the price of a coconut cream pie!"
I noticed on their business card they had the phrase 'quality music since 4pm.'
"It's when the party starts! Why wait until 5 o'clock!"
With musical influences like the Beatles, Stephane Grappelli, The Weepies, Dave Matthews, and Hot Rize, they play a wide variety of music and describe their sound as "eclectic acoustic...or whatever we can get away with...with a fiddle and a guitar..."
Apply Dark Rum and Salt Water
One of their original songs, Gone Bamboo, contains the lyric 'apply dark rum and salt water.'
"This lyric was inspired by a friend who thought drinking Captain Morgan while neck deep in the Gulf would help her cope with a bad cold."
They also have an original song called 'Got It Good."
"It's a song about counting your blessings, which we strive to do everyday."
Their music is available on iTunes, Spotify, Amazon or you can buy the cd on CDBaby.com or contact them directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Now Playing In Destin
"We have a great time on stage and nothing is better than to share that feeling with good people!"
Additional gigs are listed on their Facebook page.
"We have enough material for another CD and have been asked many times about a release date, so that's high on the list. Touring is something we are starting to prepare for so stay tuned!"