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70s Rock and Romance Cruise - discussion and questions


Honolulu Blue
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Cara Lee also joined Peter Asher for his concert , besides her James Taylor sister joined also she wasn’t listed then either. I wonder if Star Vista can afford to give refunds? They have had no income last two years. 

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I received an e-mail inviting me to book next year's edition of the UDC.  Some highlights:

  • The lineup looks good so far.  Kool & The Gang, Evelyn "Champagne" King, the ex Chic ladies, and Bee Gees Gold will be repeating from this upcoming cruise.  Notable additions include Taylor Dayne (not disco era but danceable and I like her a lot), C&C Music Factory (really not disco era, like them too, they were at 80s In The Sand last year), Al McKay All Stars, Raydio, Tavares, and Heatwave.
  • It will run February 25 - March 2, 2023.  Same ship, slightly different itinerary.  They have Key West as a port instead of Costa Maya.  I'm not sure how that will work out.
  • I can book my same cabin right now for this cruise.  I would get $100 in OBC for doing so.  The deposit would only be $100.  The price for this cabin is up $100 from this year because, reasons.
  • I can also book this offer onboard.  It's the only way to change cabins.  This is not encouraged.  From the email:  Book online now so you don't waste any of your precious vacation time in line at the onboard sales office. We will be practicing social distancing in the sales office onboard which will limit the number of people we are able to serve at once. So please, book your cabin before we set sail, so you don't miss your chance!  It's nice to know they will be practicing social distancing somewhere onboard since they're not going to have the space to do it anywhere else once we actually sail. 😁

Generous as this offer is, I'm unlikely to take them up on it as of now.  I really want to go through the full experience before I make any decisions.

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We book the following year’s cruise while on board , they normally give you 24 hours in the middle of the cruise to secure same cabin or suite , we love royal suite perks so I am sure we will book that again. We booked some former rock and romance artist in March in Dallas got a front row seats for Todd Rundgren and Christofer Cross who will be doing songs from Rubber Soul and Revolver. 
Honolulu Blue hopefully we can buy you a drink in our royal suite in a couple of weeks if you are interested. 

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1 hour ago, George C said:

We book the following year’s cruise while on board , they normally give you 24 hours in the middle of the cruise to secure same cabin or suite , we love royal suite perks so I am sure we will book that again. We booked some former rock and romance artist in March in Dallas got a front row seats for Todd Rundgren and Christofer Cross who will be doing songs from Rubber Soul and Revolver. 
Honolulu Blue hopefully we can buy you a drink in our royal suite in a couple of weeks if you are interested. 

 

That show in Dallas sounds like fun.  It's tough to go to shows in the local area, as the weather can be unpredictable at best and brutal at worst.  That's why these music themed cruises are so appealing for me.

 

Yeah, in two weeks and a day Rock and Romance will be taking off and heading out with you and your partner, but without me.  😞  Thanks for the offer, but by the time I board, you'll be leaving that beautiful royal suite.  Maybe by some chance we'll do the R&R thing together next year?  Or some other year in the future?? 

 

Anyway, if we don't talk to each other in the next couple of weeks, I wish you well on the cruise.

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A quick rundown of news in the themed cruise world over the past few days:

  • The 80s Cruise (TEC) - they stopped taking new billings sometime last week.  I think they still had some open cabins.  I guess it would be more trouble than it's worth to try to fill them.  They haven't yet released an artist schedule or their 2023 plans.
  • Star Trek the Cruise - these guys, on the other hand, have released their 2023 plans.  It will be sailing February 24-March 3, 2023 - basically the same week as their upcoming sailing.  What's changed is their embarkation port (Los Angeles), the ship (Navigator OTS), and itinerary (Mexican Riviera).  It makes sense to sail out of LA since this cruise heavily focuses on actors, who mostly cluster near there.  Will TEC follow them?  We'll see.
  • Ultimate Disco Cruise (UDC) - I've done up a tentative plan of who I plan to see, when, and where.  I joked about a conflict between Expose and The Jacksons in a previous post.  No conflict there, but there is a big, direct conflict between Expose and Russell Thompkins, Jr. and the New Stylistics.  Russell and the band are performing at the same time as Expose, in different locations (Stylistics get the theater, Expose by the pool).  My schedule is such that my one and only chance to see the Stylistics is on Sunday, which means I wouldn't see Expose until Wednesday.  That is unacceptable.  So I have Expose scheduled for a double.  Sorry Russ.  Also, I noticed that they also stopped taking bookings for this year's cruise and are featuring next year on the site already.
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UDC added two more artists to an already impressive lineup for their '23 cruise - Sister Sledge (meh) and Billy Ocean (YEAH!!  Not disco era though).  

 

18 days to go until this year's cruise takes off - can't wait! 😃

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I received an e-mail from The 80s Cruise people.  They've announced some details about the 2023 cruise:

  • It's March 3-10, 2023 on Navigator OTS sailing from LA.  It sails immediately after The Star Trek Cruise.  I thought this might happen, but it's been confirmed.
  • The dates are Friday-Friday, which makes it double tough to combine this with the UDC, which is still running Saturday-Thursday
  • Going to/from LA takes longer and will probably be more expensive than any of the Florida cities.  It's something for me to keep in mind.
  • Anyway, back to the e-mail... no artists were announced.  Boo, hiss.  In fact, they haven't announced the schedule for THIS cruise yet, which is a little disappointing.  I'm sure they'll get to it soon.
  • Booking for me starts February 15 and they say I can book any available cabin
  • There's a short refundable window - reservations can be canceled with no penalty until March 25

More food for thought as the clock ticks down.

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According to Celebrity, masks are no longer onboard for sailings after February 12, except in the casino and the main theater. This is good news, though I wonder why those specific exceptions were made. Do they know something we don't? 😁

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I listened to a random American Top 40 countdown from 1978 for an hour and what did I find?  Four songs from artists that we're going to hear on the two upcoming charters - Evelyn "Champagne" King's "Shame", A Taste of Honey's "Boogie Oogie Oogie", and Donna Summer's* "Last Dance".  All of them will be on UDC.  Representing R&R was Foreigner's "Hot Blooded".  I think there's a very good chance all four will be played - not at the same time, of course.

 

* - Donna Summer will be represented by a tribute act

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Two of the artist on our rock and romance will be with Christopher Cross and Todd Rundgren, they are badfinger and a former lead singer for Chicago, both had been on rock and romance in the past. So we will see those two twice within a month 😁

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21 hours ago, George C said:

Unfortunately today they canceled Peter Asher and Al Stewart, was looking forward to hearing both , but they added Maria Muldar and Kate Taylor who is sister of James Taylor.

 

That's the way it goes on these cruises, I'm learning.  People go, and (usually) people come to replace them.  I hope the replacements knock your socks off.

 

Speaking of replacements, I have heard of no further replacements on either UDC or TEC.  Indeed, no announcements of who will be performing when on TEC, or announcements of who will be performing on TEC '23.

 

I got the e-mail announcing the opening of booking for The 80s Cruise 2023.  It was as announced last week - March 3-10, 2023 from Los Angeles on Navigator OTS.  I did a mock booking and it looks like I could get a virtual balcony for about the same price (within $100) as the interior cabin on my current 80s Cruise.  I think I would like the virtual balcony better, so that's a plus.  They say they'll announce the lineup onboard, which is all right, but i'm impatient.  TELL ME NOW!  TELL ME NOW!!

 

Decisions decisions...

 

P.S.  The Kiss Kruise is now starting their pre-sale.  They're saying it will be the last time they perform onboard.  I had a dizzy moment where I considered sailing with them when they had RATT on the undercard.  I love me some RATT (sorry George) but wasn't wowed enough by either Kiss or the other bands to pull the trigger at that time.  RATT ended up canceling anyway.

Edited by Honolulu Blue
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I got another e-mail from The 80s Cruise.  Yeah!  It introduced me to the cruise director and other entertainment staff.  They all look like interesting people.  I'm sure to interact with them at one time or other.

 

Second, they noted that they will not have celebrity hosted excursions this year.  Allow me to explain the concept to my future self, if no one else - in the past, The 80s Cruise has had specific excursions in port that were hosted by certain artists.  They would be on the excursion and you could hang around with them (or stalk them, or whatever) as they explored the sights.  I didn't think anyone would be worthy of such attention on this year's cruise, so it's not a big loss, IMHO.  UDC does something somewhat similar with their (extra cost) wine tastings on the ship - this year they will have them with George McCrae and Thelma Houston.  Again, not of interest to me, but I'm sure they will be well attended and provide plenty of fun for those who show up.

 

Third, and most important to me, is they finally released the performer schedule.  I took a look at it and didn't note any serious conflicts.  I also didn't see any cancellations, which is very good.  

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Another day, another random AT40 countdown - this time from 1974.  I only listened for the last hour and this one had FIVE songs from artists that will be on the UDC:

  • Jackson 5 - "Dancing Machine"
  • Kool & The Gang - "Hollywood Swinging"
  • George McCrae - "Rock Your Baby"
  • The Hues Corporation - "Rock The Boat"
  • The Stylistics - "You Make Me Feel Brand New"

The last three are locks to be played, IMHO.  I think The Jacksons are likely to play "Dancing Machine", considering the theme of the cruise. I'm not at all sure the Gang will do the Hollywood thing; they've had many other, bigger hits and might pass this one on by.  I'll give it a 25% shot.

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On the eve of the cruise that I was supposed to take (in this topic's title), I found that StarVista sprung a nasty little surprise at the very last minute - an additional antigen test at the port.  😮  I don't know why they're doing this; their posts didn't disclose their reasoning.  But I bet they catch a few contagious buggers this way; I'm hoping it's not too inconvenient for them.  🙏  And I hope this surprise doesn't spread to MY cruise next week. 🙏

 

Also, Flower Power announced its 2023 sailing.  As expected, it will be March 23-30, 2023 on the Summit.  This will be immediately after the '23 Rock & Romance sailing.  @GeorgeC is already planning to book the B2B, I'm sure.  

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Tiny update between wishing I was on the way to the Summit right now...

 

There seems to have been a reason why the Mariner OTS was not used as the ship for next year's Star Trek and 80s Cruises:  it will be in an extended drydock from January through March 2023.  Source:  Cruises Cancelled in Early 2023 for Royal Caribbean Cruise Ship (cruisehive.com) .

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Rock & Romance sails on... I join the ship in five days.  Can't wait!

 

I did the random AT40 thing again this morning, this time from 1979.  I only got to the top 10.  But believe it or not, I heard songs from SIX artists that will be on this coming UDC or the one next year:

  • The Jacksons - "Shake Your Body"
  • Sister Sledge* - "He's The Greatest Dancer"
  • Cher** - "Take Me Home"
  • Chic - "I Want Your Love"
  • Donna Summer** - "Hot Stuff"
  • Peaches & Herb - "Reunited"

Will we actually hear those songs?  This was P&H's biggest hit, so that makes it a lock.  The songs from Sister Sledge and Chic are their second biggest hits, so they're all but certain to be played.  "Hot Stuff" is one of Donna's signature songs, so I think it's a likely play, though not a lock.  Cher has had several bigger hits than this one, so I think hearing this one is unlikely.  "Shake Your Body" is about as close to 50-50 as I can think of.  It was a hit, but not one of their biggest.  It is from The Jacksons as opposed to being a Jackson 5 song or one of the many solo hits.  And it's thematic.  On second thought, make it 60-40 in its favor.

 

* - on the 2023 UDC

** - artists represented by tribute acts

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I got an email this morning from StarVista about the UDC.  First, Ohio Players are out and Family Stone are in. I'm fine with it. That looks to be the last lineup change before the cruise, which makes me happy.

 

However, the more important detail is that, like the Rock and Romancers before us, they're adding a test at the terminal. 🤬🤬🤬🤬 I'm not a fan and think this step is overkill. However, I have little choice but to go along. This does change my pre-test plan. I had planned to do the proctored test thing on Friday, just before I left town. But I'll do it early Thursday instead.

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I got an e-mail from The 80s Cruise (TEC) inviting me to book celebrity hosted events on the cruise starting tomorrow morning.  They're all extra cost and are mostly drink tasting events on the ship.  I can't tell if this is to make up for the fact that they're not having shore excursions featuring celebrities or if they've always done this.  Either way, none of the events are of interest to me.  I wish those who attend well.

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On board now , had to get a second Covid test before boarding summit which caused a hour delay getting on board. Once on board no masks no masks are needed anywhere even though we are totally sold out , music has been great will post more later. Docked at st Maarten now,

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21 minutes ago, George C said:

On board now , had to get a second Covid test before boarding summit which caused a hour delay getting on board. Once on board no masks no masks are needed anywhere even though we are totally sold out , music has been great will post more later. Docked at st Maarten now,

 

Awesome!  Great to hear things are going well despite the extra test.  Please report in when you can.  We'll pass by each other soon. 

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Little stuff as my cruises draw near:

  • I got another e-mail from The 80s Cruise covering stuff that I either had already done or decided not to do.  It's nice to hear from them, even though it wasn't particularly important.  At least there wasn't any bad news.
  • I did the at-home proctored test thing.  I had no symptoms, so as expected it turned out NEGATIVE.  One down, two to go.
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I'm sure @GeorgeC has already received the news, but I got my e-mail containing my opportunity to pre-register for the 2023 Rock & Romance Cruise.  I did pre-register, but I'm not impressed with the lineup.  I'm sure they'll fill it in some, but as of now it's mostly a shrug of the shoulders.  Sorry George, it doesn't look like I'll be joining you next year.

 

In better news, in a few hours I'll be heading out on my adventure and leaving all this snow and cold behind.  Yay!  😀

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