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MUSICIAN

ABOUT

Pianist, singer and songwriter Craig Jaster plays with warmth, wit, and seasoned disregard for boundaries between musical genres. His voice, like his stage presence, is clear, strong, and emotionally direct. His approach to the piano and sharp, distinctive lyrics are influenced by Ray Charles, Dr. John, Hoagy Carmichael, and Mose Allison.

His 2017 debut jazz album, Craig Jaster Trio, recorded with drummer Tim Gilmore and bassist Brendan Dowd, captures the seasoned trio’s energy, spontaneity, and nuanced interaction in nine original compositions ranging from driving blues to melodic instrumental poems. He is also a founding member of New England-based Americana band The Buskers, playing bass, accordion and percussion as well as keyboards, and producing their albums Ray’s Vacation (2004), Spank That Tambourine! (2009) and Every Day We Play A New Song (2013).

 

As sideman, he has played with New Orleans jazz trombonist Delfeayo Marsalis, vocalist Philip Hamilton, trumpeter Tiger Okoshi, the late bluesman Big Joe Burrell, and he has opened for Ray Charles, Dianne Reeves, Maria Muldaur, and Arturo Sandoval, among others. In 2019 he worked with Washington, DC area Happenstance Theater as music director, composer, and performer in a new piece entitled Pantheon, which premiered at Baltimore Theater Project.  

He is currently based in Florence, Italy.