Festivals are a foundational place to build community. It’s a place for thousands of like-minded fans, all congregating for a similar need to release and united with enthusiasm for their favorite artists. For Jeff Cuellar, the VP of Events, Marketing, and Community for Sixthman, this is a driving force behind the company. Since 2001, Sixthman has been crafting immersive and artist-led festivals that are held on a rather unique location: a cruise ship.
They’ve increased the amount of cruises they offer significantly in the last few years, and it’s easy to see why — Sixthman cruises are designed to be engaging, unique voyages that combine fans’ passion for their favorite artists with the unforgettable experience of a cruise. Not only have they offered exciting cruises in the music world, with artists like KISS, Paramore, and Weezer, but they’ve expanded their approach to offer cruises with athletes, comedians, influencers, and more.
Sixthman has had a huge 2022, and they recently wrapped the Emo’s Not Dead Cruise, which featured Dashboard Confessional, New Found Glory, Underoath, Plain White T’s, and many more nostalgia-forward artists. Looking ahead to 2023, they’re continuing to offer unique, selective cruise experiences, including the “Cruise Perfect” Cruise, which is headlined by the beloved comedy and sports group Dude Perfect.
They’re constantly looking for creative ways to bring people together at sea, and they’re certainly thinking outside the box; one of the cruises they offer is Chris Jericho’s Rock n’ Rager, which brings WWE wrestlers together to compete on a full size wrestling ring for the “Oceania Championship Belt,” all while rock bands rage on in the background. Sixthman will also reach a 15 year milestone for the Cayamo cruise, which features dozens of musicians including Jeff Tweedy, Andrew Bird, and Trampled By Turtles, and will set sail on February 10th, 2023.
These cruises are not just music festivals, and they’re not just cruises, either: The goal is to unite cruise goers from these various devoted fan communities, and to give attendees a once-in-a-lifetime experience onboard with the artists and influencers they admire.
As a longtime Bonnaroo vet and one of the instrumental figures in making the festival what it is today, Cuellar’s ambitions for Sixthman are held to a high standard. “Honestly, the sky’s the limit with this stuff,” Cuellar tells Consequence over Zoom. “I think we only have room for growth. And it’s just gonna be making sure that we don’t eliminate any of that ‘secret sauce,’ that we’re able to keep going at a rate that that makes sense. And, of course, to keep putting our passengers and our guests and our artists first.”