Jimmy Buffett has made a career out of the sun-and-sand lifestyle: getting tan, playing guitar, drinking margaritas and being eternally on vacation on a beach somewhere. He started in music. blending country, rock, folk and pop to create his own sound.
Buffett realized early in his career, though, that musicians were often not well paid for their music. So he expanded his vision, creating an empire selling his brand of easy-going, tropical living and beach-bum persona. As Buffett himself said in a New York Times article, “I don’t know anyone alive that wouldn’t want to go to the beach for a week.”
Forbes estimated Buffett’s net worth at $550 million in 2016, and, in 2018, he earned $51 million. Despite being a well-known musician with over fifty albums and sold-out tours, Buffett makes most of his money from his chain of Margaritaville-branded restaurants, hotels, casinos, resorts and merchandise.
In addition to his business empire, Buffett is a best-selling author, pilot, sailor and environmental activist, with his own record label and radio station. Here’s how he forged his incredible career.