Johnny Bolin Facebook friended me the other day!  Johnny played drums for Mid-western hair metal band Dare Force when I saw them back in 1985 at The Patio in Sioux City Iowa. These days he is drumming for Black Oak Arkansas, which played in this year’s Tommy Bolin Tribute Music Festival alongside Ghost Ship, whose guitarist Rick Moore is the same long time friend from high school with whom I saw Dare Force.

Tommy Bolin

Cover of Tommy Bolin

When telling my sister Chris about this post, she told me she once happened to sit next to Johnny on a flight to L.A. Oddly enough, Chris was on a mission to deliver a guitar to her friend, wife of T.S.O.L. guitarist Ron Emory.  I digress, bear with me.

Separately, a recent Google search for guitarist Pat Travers revealed he is appearing on the Rock Legends II cruise.  Looking further into the details, the artist line up includes none-other than... yep, Black Oak Arkansas.

Now that got me wondering.  What other rock cruises are out there?  Below is my list of the top five rock cruises, followed with more six degrees of rock cruise separation.

Rank Photo Cruise Comments Featuring
Black Oak Arkansas
Cover of Black Oak Arkansas
Rock Legends II
  • Packed full of acts
  • On 10-Jan-13
  • Ft. Lauderdale, FL
  • Liberty of the Seas from Royal Caribbean
Foreigner, Paul Rodgers, Creedence Clearwater, Kansas, 38 Special, Marshal Tucker, Blue Oyster Cult and Black Oak Arkansas among others

311 Eighteen

311 Eighteen (Photo credit: EWatson92)

311 Caribbean Cruise 311
Kid Rock
Chillin' The Most
  • Yes, departs directly after the 311 Cruise!
  • On 6-Mar-13
  • Miami, FL
  • Norwegian Pearl from Norwegian Cruise Line
Kid Rock
Take Your Time (Lynyrd Skynyrd)

Take Your Time (Lynyrd Skynyrd) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


Simple Man Cruise
  • Possibly the original rock cruise now at ten years and counting.  Rumored to have ran out of beer and broken the Carnival Inspiration’s alcohol sales record in 2008.
  • On 27-Oct-12
  • Miami, FL
  • Norwegian Pearl (again!) from Norwegian Cruise Line
Lynyrd Skynyrd, Doobie Brothers

Shiprocked 2010

Shiprocked 2010 (Photo credit: Niki Barr Band Photos)

  • Ranks first for best rock cruise name and hardest rocking acts!
  • On 27-Nov-12
  • Fort Lauderdale, FL
  • Poesia of MSC Cruises
Godsmack, Sevendust, Filter, Fuel, P.O.D, KORN

Ok, so here it goes - our “six” (or more) degrees of rock cruise separation.

First we start with Kid Rock (Chilln’ The Most Cruise)

  • - Kid Rock performed the track “The School of Old” by Run-D.M.C.
  • - they created the track “Here We Go 2001” that was performed by Sugar Ray
  • - they created the track “Stay On” that was performed by Nick Hexum of 311 (311 Caribbean Cruise)
  • - that group’s fusion of reggae and rap-metal was created in Omaha, Nebraska
  • - that is just 90 miles south of drummer Johnny Bolin’s home town
  • - he is playing with Black Oak Arkansas
  • - they are playing on Rock Legends II Cruise with .38 Special
  • - who has member Larry Junstrom
  • - he was a member of Lynyrd Skynyrd (Simple Man Cruise)
  • - who has member Michael Cartellone
  • - he was a member of Damn Yankees
  • - who has member Ted Nugent
  • - he created the track “Cat Scratch Fever” which was performed by Godsmack (ShipRocked Cruise)

And so there you have it - the top five rock cruises and the six-or-so degrees of separation between them.  Assistance provided by 6 Degrees of Black Sabbath and All Music Guide.

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