Dead Heads, old hippies, young hippies, hula hooping, great music, cheap beer and good vibes – this is the typical scene at Skipper’s Smokehouse on Thursday nights. Skipper’s is one of the premier music venues for local bands and musicians in the Tampa Bay area. It is also a pit stop for traveling artists on tour through the sunshine state.
Every weekend there are usually different bands from around the country headlining.
Every Thursday night since 1998 taking the stage at 8 p.m. is Uncle John’s Band, who as the name implies, is a Grateful Dead cover band and a damn good one at that. They play all of the Dead hits throughout the years, fast and slow. Every now and then the band might even throw in a little Neil Young, The Band or something of the sort.
This Friday there is a book signing by author Tim Dorsey at 7 p.m. which is free to the public. Dorsey is known for his novels about two crazy characters and their adventures in Florida and has a unique style all to his own – Hunter Thompson meets Jimmy Buffett, but with Dorsey’s distinct graphics and loyal following.
At 8 p.m., the main event is Gainesville singer songwriter Chris McCarty with special guest Woody and the Nutcrackers. Both groups have a similar pop/rock sound similar to Hootie and the Blowfish or Jason Mraz but can still get down and jam. The cost for this show is $10 to $13.
The headlining artist on Saturday is Marshall Crenshaw with guest, The Bottle Rockets. Crenshaw is multi-talented as he was once an actor before getting into music. He played John Lennon in an off-Broadway production because of his resemblance to the iconic Beatle. Crenshaw also played Buddy Holly in the movie “La Bamba.” In 1982, he signed with Warner Brothers and was featured on the David Letterman show which launched his career in music.
The Bottle Rockets are an Americana rock group, who have been at it now for 15 years. They are currently on a U.S. tour with Marshall Crenshaw and his band. The cost for this show is $15 to $18.
Skipper’s Smokehouse is located at 910 Skipper Road, just a few miles from the USF Tampa campus.
Other than the great music and cheap prices, Skipper’s has been featured on the Travel Channel’s Man v. Food with Adam Richman, and the food at Skipper’s is outstanding as they are famous for their smoked seafood.