Jamaica Drum Jam, Inc.
Jamaica Drum Jam uses the infectious rhythm of drums and percussion to bring people together. Our mission is to produce drum and percussion events which foster respect, appreciation and collaboration in Jamaica, Queens and surrounding communities in New York City.
Our project began as a casual conversation over pulled pork sandwiches one chilly December afternoon. While having lunch, Jim Vasquez and Julie Sriken discussed different ideas for giving back to their hometown. As teenagers, they met in band class at Van Wyck Junior High School 217.
This musical education was a profoundly positive experience in their lives. Jim became a drummer and drum roadie who performed and worked throughout New York City. Julie started working in social services after years of musical study at LaGuardia High School for Music & Art and the Performing Arts.
Knowing that Jamaica had suffered cuts to music programs in its public schools, Julie and Jim decided to create a musical access program. Using Julie's love for organizing events and high tolerance for tedious administrative work plus Jim's ability to recruit talented friends for a good cause, they created Jamaica Drum Jam, an organization formed exclusively for the charitable, educational and cultural purposes of providing music education, music therapy and musical performances to low and moderate income individuals in New York City.