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Amelia Islander

Amelia Island Jazz Festival Announces Headliners

Mar 10, 2014 08:20AM
Jazz trumpeter and composer Randy Brecker, a multiple Grammy Awards winner, and monster jazz organ player Tony Monaco are set to headline the 2014 Amelia Island Jazz Festival, it was announced recently by AIJF Artistic Director Les DeMerle. A hugely successful performer who has sold over a half million albums as a solo artist, Brecker will be performing on Saturday, October 18, at the Omni Resorts Amelia Island Plantation with the Brecker Brothers Tribute Band, a project dedicated to his late brother Michael.  Credited with augmenting the sound of jazz, R&B and rock for more than four decades, Brecker’s trumpet and flugelhorn performances have graced hundreds of albums by a wide range of artists from James Taylor, Bruce Springsteen and Parliament/Funkadelic to Frank Sinatra, Steely Dan, and Jaco Pastorius.

Tony Monaco, who will appear on Friday, October 17 at the Omni, is a leader in the revival of the Hammond B3 organ in jazz. As he has been with so many fledgling jazz organists, Jimmy Smith played a significant role in attracting Monaco to jazz and retaining his interest in the music.  A critically acclaimed player, Monaco has released several well-reviewed albums including his latest, “Celebration: Life & Love & Music” on the Chicken Coup Label.   “We are very excited to have Randy, a longtime friend, and Tony this year—both are world class artists and highly respected musicians,” said DeMerle. “Fernandina Beach can truly look forward to some spectacular musical fireworks.”  The Festival, which will run from October 16-19, will kick off with its annual pre-Festival free concert in Amelia Park on Sunday, October 12,with the TGIF U.S. Navy Brass Band.  A Latin Jazz Night with the hot dance group, El Niño and the Latin Jazz Knights, is scheduled for Thursday, October 16, and a Dixieland Jazz Brunch, featuring DeMerle’s Spare Rib Six with vocalist Bonnie Eisele, will close the festival on Sunday, October 19, at David’s Restaurant.  Additionally, the Festival will present a Jazz In The Schools program, clinics, jam sessions and more to be announced.

A not for profit 501(c)(3) corporation, the Les DeMerle Amelia Island Jazz Festival distributes proceeds toward a scholarship program to fund college educations for aspiring jazz musicians.

For more information, please contact the Festival Hotline at (904) 504-4772 or visit the website at