Less than two months after playing music for thousands of people at the 25th Dallas Kosher Chili Cookoff, Jim Schwartz of the Mazik Brother passed away from pancreatic cancer.
Jim founded the Mazik Brothers with Rusty Cooper in 2003 after he convinced Rusty to give it a try. Jim was a financial planner and Rusty worked for Morgan Stanley. Both loved music. The band became popular and played at weddings, bar mitzvahs, philanthropic events and coffee shops.
The Mazik Brothers began playing at the Cookoff in 2004. They covered popular songs from 60s, 70s and 80s, playing with very few breaks from the opening to just before the awards. People would pull up chairs to listen, make requests and sing along. Some would dance in front of the stage.
Jim loved people and music. He listened to what others had to say and was kind.
At the 26th cookoff, Rusty plans to continue providing music, playing with the Mazik Experience and Side Gig. “We will be missing our leader Jim Schwartz most terribly,” he wrote on the Mazik Brothers Facebook page, “but it’s time to celebrate life as Jim wanted us to do. Come one, come all! We would love to see you.”