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undmusfest02 Divers, Snorkelers Flock To Keys For Underwater Music Festival

(Source: Fla. Keys News Bureau)

OFF BIG PINE KEY (CBSMiami) – You listen to it in your car, on your phone and while you exercise.

A few people even listened to music underwater Saturday.

About 300 divers and snorkelers flocked to the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary to listen a quirky underwater concert (see video below).

The concert was staged by Keys radio station US-1 Radio 104.1FM at Looe Key Reef, about six miles south of Big Pine Key.

Underwater attendees were treated to a commercial-free playlist of ocean-themed songs, including Jimmy Buffett’s “Fins,” the Beatles’ “Yellow Submarine,” and the themes from “The Little Mermaid” and television’s classic “Gilligan’s Island.”

The music was broadcasted via speakers suspended beneath boats positioned above the reef.

“Music underwater has a real ethereal feel to it,” said festival founder Bill Becker. “You don’t just hear it through your ears, you hear it through your whole body — through your jawbone, through your skull.”

Some divers were costumed to spoof contestants and judges from popular television reality shows. Some even pretended to play instruments like a trom-bonefish and clambourine sculpted by Florida Keys artist August Powers.

According to one festival participant, humans weren’t the only ones that seemed to enjoy the underwater concert.

“I think the fish liked the music,” said 7-year-old snorkeler Jaden Gill of Orlando. “It sounded like a band is playing.”

As well as being an offbeat experience for divers and snorkelers, the festival carried a serious message of preserving part of the continental United States’ only living contiguous coral barrier reef. The broadcast incorporated diver awareness announcements emphasizing ways to enjoy the reef while minimizing impacts on the underwater environment.


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