For those who have never been on ShipRocked, it’s impossible to fully appreciate not only the music but also the sense of community and family. Before embarking on ShipRocked 2017, I was among those that just knew about the music. Yes, this was my first cruise ever, and I was broken in on ShipRocked. I knew that it was a cruise that offered the best bands in Rock, including Breaking Benjamin, Papa Roach, Alter Bridge, Pop Evil, Lacey Sturm, Art of Dying, Wilson, Crobot, Sevendust, Cane Hill, Stitched Up Heart, RavenEye and more. With each band playing twice, it allowed time for ink by the one and only SouthBay Mike or Tahiti Gil while on the high seas. Please enjoy ROCKwell UnScene Magazine and Tattoo.com’s recap of the 4 night/5 days of music, ink, sun, and non-stop fun aboard ShipRocked 2017.
Upon boarding the ship and entering the main floor bar, we were greeted by the staff and left to roam around to let it all soak in. While exploring the ship I saw the water slide, hot tubs, pool, and of course the main deck stage. The massiveness of the ship still did not sink in until I went to the top deck. It was here I took in a round of mini golf before we left the Miami dock and set sail. Picture the sun setting over the ocean, the skyline of Miami, and a stage waiting for the one and only Sevendust to kick off this rock and roll voyage. When Sevendust finally kicked in, the deck was elbow to elbow with fans of all ages and our journey had officially begun.
A special musical bonus to the cruise was the StowAways, an all-star band made up of different members from different bands covering songs near and dear to them. Each year is different, but the 2017 version of the StowAways included members of Type O Negative, Buckcherry, All That Remains, Guns ‘n Roses, Black Label Society, Drowning Pool… and that is just a small sample of the talent that was on the stage at one time.
If that is not enough to make you want to throw the horns up, imagine standing in the buffet line next to Ben Burnley from Breaking Benjamin, Josh Todd from Buckcherry, or Oli from All that Remains. It was common to see the musicians out and about mingling with the fans and being human. There were also formal meet and greets where you could get photos with and say hey to the bands.
Day three was island day where everyone on board was able to get off the ship and hang out on Grand Turk. It was on the island that you could hang out at the pool party hosted by Margaritaville, take part in games on the beach, take tours of the island by ATV, motorcycle, bicycle or boat, swim with the stingrays, shop, or just walk the beautiful white sand beaches. As for me and Rockwell, we renewed our vows on the sands of Grand Turk.
As I eluded to before, the family and community feeling are alive and well with ShipRockers. Many of the fans on the boat have taken the cruise from day one and others are a good three or more cruises in. If you were new the veteran ShipRockers welcomed you (the “newbies”) with open arms and made you feel like you were there from day one. It is something you really must experience to appreciate. Friends of mine who were veteran ShipRockers had told me what a family it was, and afterward, I can say it definitely was.
It was not just the bands and fans that were awesome to be around, but the crew as well. The staff all over the ship went above and beyond to give you the experience of a lifetime. That included towels folded into animals. We had either a bunny, a frog, or an elephant waiting for us each day when we returned to our pristine clean stateroom.
As far as souvenirs, what could you leave the ship with? Besides the onboard store offerings, the bands and ShipRocked had an awesome merch shop that had something for everyone. Tees, CDs, drumsticks, and more. You could also take part in an auction to score signed guitars from the bands, drumheads, band related art, and more.
The best way to commemorate the cruise, in my opinion, is a tattoo. SouthBay Mike and Tahiti Gil were on board for all your ink needs. We even ran into a couple in their 50’s who chose to get their first ever tattoos during the cruise. So who do you think they were fans of? They followed Avatar, Wilson and other great bands that were on the boat. The husband, Craig, got the Fuckery Skull Hands from Wilson and his wife chose to get the ShipRocked logo. They gave us the chance to not only chat with them but film this event. Check it out on the next page.
I could go on and on about why you MUST DO SHIPROCKED but I will leave you with this… it is the ultimate music fan and ink experience. Book your tickets for the 2018 cruise now at www.ShipRocked.com because this ship sells out very quickly!