Accordion, Instrument of the Gods It Happened to Me Music Tampa Bay

Tampa Bay Ukulele Getaway 2022 (or: Birthday stretch 2.0)

Tampa Bay Ukulele Getaway banner with added photo of Joey deVilla on accordionLast year, the Tampa Bay Ukulele Getaway (TBUG for short) took place on my birthday. The 2022 edition happens this weekend, and we’re going to be there!

Anitra wanted to go, and I thought it would be a fun birthday activity to try my hand at a stringed instrument, which I’m normally terrible at playing. (My “keytar” period, and later the accordion, stem from being a frustrated attempted guitar player.)

TBUG takes place at the Sirata Resort on St. Pete Beach, right next door to where we got married:

Joey deVilla and Anitra Pavka on St. Pete Beach.

It turned out better than expected. For starters, Anitra won the grand prize at the raffle…

Anitra Pavka and the ukulele she won.

…I found a very reliable local purveyor of high-quality aloha shirts in Emily and Mike Stehle (my old go-to had closed up shop…

Joey deVilla in one of his new aloha shirts.

…and I also found Tom Hood, who invited me to join him and his band, Tom Hood and the Tropical Sons, on a number of local gigs!

Joey deVilla playing accordion on a pier with Tom Hood and Tropical Sons.This year, I’m not just an attendee, but part of the lineup of evening performers. I’ll be playing originals and classic rock/blues covers with Tom Hood and the Tropical Sons, as well as helping out with the special ’80s jams — mostly on accordion, but maybe a little ukulele as well.

Best of all, I’ll get to be on stage on Saturday, which happens to be my birthday. For me, that’s a great birthday treat.

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