The air is crisp and cool as passers-by stroll down the sidewalk. Lights twinkle off the saxophone whose beats have the people dancing and swaying to the rhythm. It’s a live music scene. Jazz from the past has returned and everyone around is loving it.
The setting almost resembles a dream.
A dream, that is, for Erika White and her two partners, Elisha Parris and Robin Williams. The trio of corporate officers for the Jacksonville-based record company, Parriscope Entertainment Inc., is seeking to expand and promote the dying genre of historic jazz music through performance, education and preservation. As if that isn’t enough the group wants to boost awareness and pride in the contributions that African-Americans have made and will continue to make to jazz.
“We just want to put out what we have in our hearts and our passion for music out there for people to embrace,” White said.
White and her partners have taken the chance to make their dream real by signing up for the crowd-funded festival, One Spark. The group attempted to sign up the first year, but missed the deadline and has been eagerly waiting to sign up she explained.
”We have a passion for the realness of music, and love presenting it to the community,” White said. “We want to bring out the live elements.”
The team has named its project “Keeping Live Music Alive”on the One Spark roster is seeking funding of $25,000. With that money, the three said they will preserve and distribute historical jazz. The funds are intended to assist with studio growth and community awareness.
“We want the community to know we are here,” White said.
The trio has already begun establishing its musical credibility with Parriscope Entertainment, which they started in 2006 at Parris’ home. Today the business is located at its third — and hopefully final — location off San Juan Avenue, White said.
The company has signed several musicians in the Jacksonville area. Between the two of their labels, PEinc and PEinc Gospel, Parriscope represents the genres of jazz, gospel, soul and even spoken word. The recording studio and production team has produced sound from artists such as Celestial, Chris Williams, Love Reigns, Elisha Atlas Parris, Kendra Cash and Kia Nicole.
The group plans to focus its brand primarily as a showcase of talented artists. “As well as the live performances, we will have videos describing what we do and what we want to do,” White explained.
This story was reported by Ignite Media, an independent news bureau created by University of North Florida students.