Friday, July 6, 2012 at 9:42 a.m.
Reggae legend Toots headlines the Labor Day weekend event.
At a time when South Florida festivals are dropping like flies, one local man has emerged to fill the void by putting local bands, national acts, and Florida pride on the stage. In the shadow of Langerado's demise and the serious disappointment of Buzz Bake Sale, North Palm Beach native and self-starter Patrick Maraist took matters into his own hands.
"Something needed to be done to keep live music going," says Maraist of the recent launch of his company, Music Jam Productions. Music Jam is here to "present two or three music festivals per year where there will be major headlining acts and Florida bands, a way to bring music fans and musicians together in a big community," he says.
Maraist's long-term goal is to shine a global light on Floridian talent, and he plans on bringing acts from every corner of the Sunshine State to perform at his event. "The area is ripe for trying to make something happen that will get people's attention," he says.
Every act, then, is carefully handpicked to fit a particular musical vibe. With Summer Jam, Maraist set out out to nail the perfect blend of reggae and rock. That means everything from acoustic sets to heavy metal, not to mention headlining and hip-shaking reggae superlegends Toots and the Maytals.
Maraist's vision is even broader than just a one-off event, though. He dreams of taking the show on the road in the future -- all, of course, with the intention of spreading the Florida love. Looks like the area's got its jam back.
Catch Summer Jam Setember 2 and 3 at the Meyer Amphitheatre in downtown West Palm Beach. For more information, the full lineup, and to buy tickets, visit musicjamproductions.com.
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