Park West and Scott Jacobs Help Raise Funds for Young Musicians

The Les DeMerle Band performs at the 2018 Big Band Bash (Photo courtesy of John Block)

When Park West Gallery teams up with its artists for a good cause, they make great music together.

Park West Gallery helped raise $7,000 for the Amelia Island Jazz Festival’s music scholarship program during the festival’s 7th Annual Big Band Bash gala on February 17. The Amelia Island Jazz Festival is a non-profit organization that provides funds to aspiring jazz musicians.

Spearheaded by iconic drummer Les DeMerle, the organization’s outreach programs also include music education and enrichment programs for youth and seniors. In addition to the Big Band Bash, the organization holds a jazz festival fundraiser every October at Amelia Island, Florida featuring top jazz performers.

“We feel so truly blessed to have Park West Gallery’s title sponsorship of the Amelia Island Jazz Festival for several years,” said DeMerle.

Park West gallery artwork at the 7th Amelia Island Jazz Festival Big Band Bash Benefit Gala (Photo courtesy of John Block)

This year’s Big Band Bash featured a great meal, dancing, and a classic jazz performance by the Les DeMerle Big Band and vocalist Bonnie Eisele. Along with the musical arts, guests enjoyed the visual arts with an art auction held by Park West Gallery.

Park West Gallery’s Jason Castner facilitated the auction, and called the evening a “truly amazing” event.

“The sheer talent of the musicians and singers in the room, combined with the generosity and love of the patrons, all combined to make it a magical night,” Castner said. “The Park West team and I were honored to be able to participate and contribute.”

Jason Castner auctions off artwork during the 2018 Big Band Bash (Photo courtesy of John Block)

The auction isn’t Park West’s only connection to the festival. The Amelia Island Jazz Festival selected Scott Jacobs to create the artwork for this year’s festival. Jacobs is the first-ever officially licensed artist by Harley-Davidson and is renowned for his photorealistic paintings of motorcycles, flowers, and wine.

“I was very honored that [the festival] would think of me to do it,” Jacobs says. “I love doing special event pieces because it’s something out of the norm of what I do every day.”

Jacobs said his vision for the upcoming festival’s artwork is a still life of jazz instruments, such as drums, saxophones, and trumpets. Since Jacobs spends 150 to 700 hours creating one of his highly-detailed paintings, he expects to complete his artwork in the next few months. Jacobs’ artwork will appear on the upcoming festival’s materials, such as tickets, posters, and shirts.

Artist Scott Jacobs speaks to the Big Band Bash crowd via video about creating the official artwork for the 2018 Amelia Island Jazz Festival (Photo courtesy of John Block)

Fittingly, Jacobs has been involved in music for most of his life. The artist has been a drummer since the age of 12, and is happy to work with a legendary drummer like DeMerle for the jazz festival.

“When I get to do something with Les DeMerle, one of the most iconic drummers still alive today, that is a gigantic honor for me,” Jacobs says.

In previous years, the official artists for the festival have been Alfred Gockel, David “Lebo” Le Batard, Tim Yanke, and Marcus Glenn.

Visit the Amelia Island Jazz Festival website for more information about its music programs and festivals. Contact our gallery consultants to learn how to collect artwork from Scott Jacobs and other Amelia Island Jazz Festival artists.

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