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Ship Out

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Ship Out!

6 March 2010

Michael Popke

I'm a cruiser. From the minute my wife and I climbed aboard the Carnival Fantasy on our honeymoon nearly 16 years ago, I was hooked on the all-you-can-eat concept and, more importantly, not having to be anywhere at any given time.

Since 1994, my wife and I have taken three more cruises, two with our kids -- and each time we exited the gangway, we wished we could turn around again and hop right back onboard. Had the finances been in place this year, I would have booked myself a spot on the recently canceled Triton Power Cruise. For years, I've wondered what it would be like to sail on a music-themed cruise such as the Jam Cruise, which this year included performances and passenger mingling by Zappa Plays Zappa, Galactic, Railroad Earth and Ohmphrey. So when the Triton Power Cruise aboard the Carnival Imagination (I've been on that one, too) was announced for April 30-May 3 -- featuring the first-ever live performance by Shadow Gallery, plus gigs with Evergrey, Pagan's Mind, Circle II Circle, Jon Oliva's Pain, Crimson Glory, Seven Witches, Futures End, Eumeria, The Element, Cage, Seven Kingdoms and Wicked Waltz -- I banged my head in support of such a great idea. What a trip for fans! It would be like ProgPower USA on water!

Unfortunately, the cruise was canceled in late February "due to an extreme medical crisis within the promoter's family." A statement from cruise organizers went on to explain that "this cancellation does not represent a failure on behalf of any individual, band, sponsor, ticket sales or the cruise line. Any speculation otherwise would be categorically erroneous."

I wholeheartedly support the idea of a prog/power-metal cruise -- especially one with such an awesome lineup -- and would love to see the TCP rescheduled. But family always comes first. Based on what promoter Beth Mays recently posted on the Ultimate Metal Forum, the health issue involves her son's heart and is quite serious. I don't blame her, and I wouldn't even if I did have tickets. Neither should anyone else.


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