Long at the forefront of modern jazz drumming, drummer, clinician and band leader Les DeMerle toured and recorded with the Harry James Big Band from 1970 to 1982. One of those recordings, "King James Version" won a Grammy Award. Les toured for three years and recorded with Wayne Newton, also toured and recorded with Manhattan Transfer, and has appeared with many other musical greats, including, Lou Rawls, Sammy Davis Jr., Frank Sinatra, Mel Torme, and Joe Williams.

A native of New York, DeMerle was introduced to music at the age of ten by a roommate at the Eastern Military Academy on Long Island. Teaching himself to play drums, he quickly mastered the instrument. By the age of 16, he had secured a spot in Lionel Hampton's orchestra.

Veering toward jazz fusion, DeMerle formed Sound 67 with trumpet player Randy Brecker in 1967. This group evolved into Transfusion, which produced five poll-winning albums and featured Randy and Michael Brecker and guitarist/vocalist Steve Katz (later of Blood, Sweat & Tears).

His two educational drum books, Jazz/Rock Fusion, Volumes 1 and 2, published by Hal Leonard, have long been best sellers.

More recently, Les has found a home on Florida's Amelia Island. The producer of the annual Amelia Island Jazz Festival since 2001, DeMerle has been a fixture at the Lobby Lounge in the Ritz-Carlton Hotel, where he's performed with the Dynamic Les DeMerle Orchestra Featuring Bonnie Eisele since 1991.