OFFBEAT: Singer Jimmy Cliff heads to Hammond, readers receive replies

Phil Potempa's daily entertainment news column
2014-04-25T00:00:00Z OFFBEAT: Singer Jimmy Cliff heads to Hammond, readers receive repliesBy Philip Potempa, (219) 852-4327

Hammond Mayor Thomas McDermott Jr. announced Thursday via his Facebook page that singer Jimmy Cliff is among the headliners for the 2014 Festival of the Lakes.

"Save the Date Wed 7/16/14 for Festival of the Lakes Hammond, Ind. JIMMY CLIFF headlines Reggae night @ the Fest See you there!!" McDermott penned to the public.

As a nod to the lyrics of Cliff's biggest hit, McDermott continued: " 'I Can See Clearly Now' that this year's Festival of the Lakes will have many 'bright, bright, sun shiny days.' "

The Jamaican musician and singer, who celebrated his 66th birthday this month, is the only living musician to hold the Order of Merit, the highest honor that can be granted by the Jamaican government for achievement in the arts and sciences.

In 2010, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

While Cliff kicks off the first day of the festival on July 16, the rest of the announced entertainment includes Thursday, July 17 headliners: The Jimmy Sarr Band opening for Big & Rich, followed by Sublime with Rome July 18 and Saturday's July 19 line-up showcasing The Under the Sun Tour featuring Sugar Ray, Blues Traveler and Uncle Kracker. The Latin Night entertainment for Sunday, July 20 has not yet been announced.

Signed, sealed, delivered

Reader Chuck Bucsanyi of Whiting wrote me last month asking for help to find the address for Fats Domino in New Orleans so he could request to have some favorite collectibles autographed by the music great.

After jotting down the needed address, Bucsanyi sent off his items with fingers crossed. Last week, he called me with good news that all of the items had been returned to him signed just as requested.

The same story is true for reader Diane Traher of Dyer, who requested an address for actor Mark Harmon to arrange for an autographed photo as a surprise birthday gift for her parish priest, who is a great fan of Harmon's TV series "NCIS" and his character on the show, Leroy Jethro.

Last week, Traher wrote me saying she sent off her request and included a copy of my column about Harmon and his father Tom Harmon's local connection to the Region. And within two weeks, she said Harmon had graciously mailed her back and fulfilled the request, including an autographed 8-by-10 publicity photo of himself as his character from the show.

"However, he didn't return the copy of the column you wrote about him, so I can only guess he must have liked it and it is now in his scrapbook at his home in Malibu!" Traher said.

The opinions expressed are solely those of the writer. He can be reached at or (219) 852-4327.

Copyright 2014 All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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