Underwater Music Festival 2020: Florida Keys!

Florida Keys Underwater Music Festival
Written by Town & Tourist

Did you know music travels faster underwater?? Well it does, so what better way to take full advantage of this scientific phenomenon, than at Floridas Lower Keys Underwater Music festival! 

This wacky music festival is held annually within 1 week following Independence day (4th of July). The music festival was founded over 35 years ago by Bill Becker, to help raise awareness for the preservation of the Coral Reef.

When is the Underwater Music Festival 2020?

The Florida Lower Keys Underwater Music Festival is held on July 12th-13th according to the official lower keys chamber of commerce, it is their 35th anniversary so expect a special one! 

 This musical extravaganza is held at Looe Key Reef which is North America’s only Coral reef which is still alive!

Florida Keys Underwater Music festival.

Florida Keys Underwater Music festival. Source: Florida Underwater festival

Looe Key Reef is also the third largest in the entire world. This coral reef has such immense beauty and there is no better way to raise awareness & get everyone together then this Underwater Music Festival. The Looe Key Reef is a protected area and part of the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary six miles to the south of Big Pine Key. 

According to the Festival Founder Bill Becker: “The Underwater Music Festival is a way to celebrate the coral reef and we celebrate it by looking for a balance between protection of the reef and public enjoyment.”

We have a captive audience down there,” 

He went on to say “We have divers and snorkelers listening to public service announcements about reef preservation, coral reef etiquette and diver awareness.”

It’s things that they can do to lessen their impact on the coral reef.

So make sure you check this Underwater Festival out as it “Tis the sea-son” after all! 


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Hey travelers! Looking for a unique event in a spectacular location?Check this out. The time is approaching for another edition of the most unusual music festival you’ll ever see. The annual Lower Keys Underwater Music Festival takes place July 12 – 13 at Looe Key Reef in the beautiful Florida Keys. Music? Underwater? Confused? Take a look!!! . For more info, click here: http://candfltd.com/underwater-music-festival-only-in-the-keys-p384-204.htm . . #paidpromotion . #sponsored #uwmf #underwatermusicfestival #lowerkeys #lkcc #floridakeys #looekey #looekeyreef #comingsoon #us1radio #captianhooks #lkcc #lowerkeyschamber #lubelllabs #keyslife #keybillys #sunandfun #funky #inagoodway

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What Costume to wear? Mermaid or Poseidon. 

Although Costumes aren’t a requirement, many guests choose to dress up, which makes the whole experience even more aquatic.

Florida Keys Underwater Music Festival Costume

Florida Keys Underwater Music Festival, is a real quirky Extravaganza!

With everything from Ariel the Mermaid, to Nemo, Poseidon, Aqua Man, Sponge bob and even “Micheal Phelps”! An interesting costume I saw one guy wearing, just a speedo with fake golden Olympic Medals around his neck! So be creative and have fun…this is definitely one you will wan’t to Succumb to pier pressure! 


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Uncle Sam and Bertha #underwatermusicfestival #LooeKey #dive #ocean

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Music & Experience:

The Lower Keys Underwater Music Festival is a “Sofishticatedevent attracting hundreds of divers & snorkelers from all over the world! The aqua enthusiasts are magnetised by this Bucket list experience. With sound traveling 4.5 times faster under water, it is no wonder many previous guests have said to have been able to “feel” the music aswell as hear it in a way like no other. 

The Music is supplied by the local Keys Radio Station US1 104.1 FM, with a pre selected sea life themed playlist piped underwater via waterproof Speakers  (Lubell Labs)  hung from boats which float above the Coral Reef. 

Florida Keys Underwater Music Festival

One of the talented mermaids playing her fishy flute. Florida Keys Underwater Music Festival. Source: Keys Underwater Music Festival

The idea of the music is to really heighten the underwater experience and as divers take part in an adventure through the Floridas keys Coral Reef. Along the way expect to see plenty of tropical fish and a host of marine wildlife which don’t seem to mind the music! So all and all, it will leave you Feeling “fin-tastic“!  

UnderWater Intruments?

Yeah thats right, where else in the world would you see talented musican/divers playing a “Trom-bonefish” or “Sea Flute” . This instruments are all created by the talented artist August Powers, Flordia’s own Aqua Artist. 

These instruments will definitely have you saying “Shell Yeah!” 

Music & Playlist:

Past fans of this Underwater Music Festival have called it a “Real life Finding Nemo”. With a real music of Ocean music from classics to electronic and Jazz. Each track will sure have you saying “Shell we dance?

Classic tracks Include Music from “the little mermaid” to the Beatles “Octopus’s Garden”, “Yellow Submarine” and Jimmys Buffett’s the “fins”.

One of my favourite songs which was played there was “Somewhere Beyond the Sea” by Frank Sinatra….it’s truly magical deep diving through Coral reefs with this tune filling the waters. 

 “Fishy” Music Highlights: 

‘How Deep Is The Ocean’ – Irving Berlin

A jazz classic. Irving Berlin’s 1932 song was brought into a classic by Frank Sinatra, before being covered by host of talented people from Eric Clapton to Bob Dylan.

“Girl and the Sea,” The Presets

This is a great one to get the party started. With this upbeat electro pop tune. 
Fun Fact: It is said that the duo actually recorded this song in the bathroom of their home. 

‘Surfin’ U.S.A – The Beach Boys

The Catchy Californian sound, and ultimate classic. Yeah, buoy!

‘Only the Ocean’ – Jack Johnson

This song is full of Metaphors which don’t make sense, but it has a great love for the sea in this chilled out Ballad. 

Wavves- King of the Beach. 

Please excuse my resting beach face.

“Under the Sea,” Disney’s “The Little Mermaid” version.

This is not a traditional music festival song, but it’s definitely a childhood favorite. 

 In the movie, Aerial (the Mermaid) wishes to join the human world above the water’s surface. However, the lobster (Sebastian), the kings advisor tries to convince her to stay underwater by singing about the wondrous ocean life, saying things like “darling it’s better, down where it’s wetter.”
Expect to see plenty of Aerial and Sebastian Characters if you visit the Florida Keys Underwater Music festival. 
Girls dressed as Mermaids, Aerial at the Keys Underwater Music Festival.

Girls dressed as Mermaids, Aerial at the Keys Underwater Music Festival.Photo: Debbra Dunning Brouillette

Max Can’t Surf’ – Fidlar

Max can’t surf, he gets real stoned and tries to make it work, but God knows he’s got no balance

“Octopus Garden,” The Beatles

A true classic recorded for their 1969 album “Abbey Road.” The “Fishy” thing about this   song is it was actually written by their drummer Ringo Starr…who also was the lead Vocalist. Well you know what they say, what happens underwater stays underwater…sorry John and Paul. 
Regardless, this upbeat tune speaks of the carefree nature of an octopus’s life underwater, with lyrics such as “in our little hideaway beneath the waves, resting our head on the sea bed.”

‘Seaside’ – The Kooks

The opening track for the U.K band  the Kooks debut record ‘Inside In/Inside Out’, ‘Seaside’ is a story of love found at the beach….or Underwater!

Watch this video on YouTube.

“The Ocean,” Led Zeppelin

A great one by Led Zeppelin, the British rock kings. Who released this track in the early 1970’s. It is actually believed that the Song referred to the bands “Ocean of fans”  with  such lyrics as “singing to an ocean, I can hear the ocean’s roar.” However, when swimming at the Underwater Music Festival it’s best to imagine the ocean waves crashing above…to give you a real sense of theatre. 

“Mermaid in the Night,” Jimmy Buffett

This is a classic one for country music fans, Jimmy Buffet’s “Mermaid in the Night”.
A track on the 1989 album “Off to see the Lizard,” the fun tune tells the story of falling in love with a mermaid while fishing one late evening. Who can not fall in love with this song, with classic lyrics like: 
I’m in love with a creature from the sea, she brings out the crustacean in me.”

The DJ set runs from 10A.m to 2pm so is a fairly short daytime festival, but the experience will last a lifetime. 


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These mermaids are jammin’ under the sea for an underwater music festival #underwatermusicfestival

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Do we hear music different underwater?

Yes! In fact sound waves travel 4.3 times faster underwater than through the air. Scientifically, this is because water is denser than air. However, because the sound travels faster underwater it can be harder for us to detect which direction it is coming from.

Florida Keys Underwater Music Festival 2019

Florida Keys Underwater Music Festival 2019.  Source: Keys Underwater Music Festival.

The Science Bit:

Another phenomenon of our bodies is called bone conductivity. In this process, the mastoid (Bone behind our ears) takes in sounds independently. This allows the sound to effectively shortcut our outer ear, going straight to the cochlea and thus sending signals to the brain. 

Due to this, we can hear sounds at much HIGHER FREQUENCIES then we can on land. So that high frequency pop tune, may have a few extra cords at the Underwater Music Festival. Sound is also be able to travel further underwater, this is how whales can communicate miles apart! 

Sound under water diagram

Particles are closer together underwater, allowing sound to travel further. Source: Reddit.

Floridas Coral Reef Ecosystem

Despite being a really fun music festival, it’s great to remember the real purpose of this Underwater Music Festival, is to raise awareness for the preservation of the Florida Keys wonderful Coral Reef.  

About Florida Coral Reef:

The Florida keys Coral reef is North America’s only living coral barrier reef  and the third largest in the world after Australias Great Barrier Reef and Meso-American reef, Belize (Central America). 

It lies six miles seaward of the Florida Keys, submerged in water 30-50 feet deep.  The reef starts close to Miami and extends southwest to the Dry Tortugas, approximately 60-70 miles west of Key West.

Florida keys Coral reefs

Florida Coral reefs are coloful mural of beauty. (Image Courtesy i.ytimg.com). (Florida Keys Underwater Music Festival)

Is Coral a plant or animal?

Most people are confused about coral, are they rocks, plants or animals. The fact is they are alive and do not make there own food, so they are Marine animals/creatures. 

The actual mound or branches that make up the coral is made up of thousands of tiny animals called polyps.  The polyp has a mouth sounded by stinging tentacles.

The polyps take in the calcium carbonate (limestone) from the sea water and build a hard Skeleton, to protect it’s soft body. Ocean acidification slows the rate at which the coral can take in the Calcium Carbonate and thus produce a strong shell, this makes them more vulnerable to destruction. 

Floridas Keys Coral Reef

Floridas Keys Coral Reef. Floridas Keys Coral Reef. Source: opalunpacked.com (They have a great guide on floridas Coral reef)

Why is Florida’s coral reef important?

As the only living coral reefs in U.S waters, they have a huge responsibility for contributing to Marine health & environment. The reef is made up of outer reefs and patch reefs which contain over 50 different species of coral and over 200 species of fish! 

With the reef being destroyed, the marine life will be affected and of course Floridas fishery industry. With stone crabs and spiny lobster, being abundant catches there. For the Best Crab Fishing Spots by State, check out this Epic Article.

There is also a large tourism economy worth millions surrounding the reef with boating & diving activities popular by many who wish to experience the beauty of the reef. The irony is the immense popularity of Florida Keys Coral Reef, is actually part of it’s demise. 

Florida Keys Coral Reef, Disease map. Source.

The smallest touch by a diver or boats anchor can crush the coral reef leaving it open to infection and diseases. The Coral reefs have been growing for hundreds of years yet only grow 1.5 inches every year, so a small scrape can undo hundred of years of growth. 
Also pollution and climate change cause degradation of the coral and bleaching with it eventually becoming destroyed. 
So the idea of events like Floridas Underwater Music Festival is to preserve the Coral reefs beauty and important role in the Marine environment for many future generations to come.
While in Florida, be sure to check out some of these great state parks, Collier-Seminole State Park & Kissimmee Prairie Preserve State Park

The awe-inspring seven mile bridge in Florida. A fantastic place to drive. (Florida Keys Underwater Music Festival)

Check out the seven mile drive, if your in Florida…a wonderful spot over the reef. For more on this check out this epic article on the top 25 EPIC U.S driving roads.

Final thoughts on the Underwater Music Festival: 

The Lower Keys Underwater Music Festival is a great Florida Event and a great way to truly experience a unique bucket list experience. So Sea’s the day! 

Divers and snorkelers who wish to take part in the festival can reserve space on boats run by Lower Keys dive operators or even launch their own boats from nearby public ramps and marinas. 

The Pre event party for the Underwater Music Festival, is usually held on the Friday before at the Tiki Bar location at Looe Key Reef Resort, 27340 Overseas Highway. With many attractions and appetizers, drinks and a few speeches about the Keys Coral  reef. For costs, reservations. call 305-872-2411. Official FB event.

Challenge? Count how many Sea Puns I used in writing this fishy article and leave it in the comments below! Also add you own fishy phrases…whoever has the best will be given a chance to win a special Aqua surprise. 😉 

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