“They say this is cruisin’, travelin’ the world by sea.” Scott Perkins lives the life he expresses in his music, exploring the world aboard the 32-ft DownEast sailboat Chip Ahoy. His 6,000-mile trip around America’s Great Loop boat trip inspired this collection of songs about passing through river locks, meeting interesting characters on boats and in America’s small towns and watching dolphins play alongside Chip Ahoy as she entered the Gulf of Mexico and passed into the Atlantic Ocean. The millionaire Intracoastal Waterway alley from Miami to Fort Lauderdale inspired Scott’s Florida anthem, “La Dee Dah.” “Sweetwater” captures the emotions of sailing on Lake Superior, the world’s largest freshwater lake by surface. “Justify This Day” explains what it’s like to be tested in a storm on the water or in your soul – or both.
A lead guitarist and professional musician for more than three decades, Scott cut his teeth on classic rock & roll, wearing out the grooves on BB King records when he was 15 and graduating from playing for pizza to professional life in rock & roll touring bands throughout the South and Midwest in the 60s and 70s. After a stint on the western band circuit booking out of Las Vegas, in the 1980s Scott opened Perkins Electronics in his hometown of Houghton, Michigan. While playing occasional local gigs, his main focus was family life. The “music room” in the back yard was a proving ground for many of his daughter’s bands and his son became an excellent drummer.
Scott’s musical taste ranges all over the map, with true craftsmanship being the number-one criteria. A short list of favored performers includes Eric Clapton, Mark Knopfler, Carlos Santana, Joe Cocker and Gary Moore.
As he makes his way through Jimmy Buffett country, performing in southern Florida and the Keys, Scott is quite frequently compared to Buffett. “The comparison is flattering, but when people ask me who I sound like or play like, I have to say that I mostly sound like – myself,” says Scott.
We recently met up with the crew of Chip Ahoy, Scott and his wife Cyndi (below) while visiting Marathon on our way down to Key West.