Craig Jaster had early exposure to singing, songwriting and arranging as a child, when an as-yet-unknown composer named Andrew Lloyd Webber created Joseph And His Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat as guest artist at his primary school, which the students performed as an oratorio with a rock band at London’s St. Paul’s Church. As a teenager growing up in Washington, DC in the '70s, he was deeply influenced by legendary indie radio station WHFS, which then championed everything from funk and jazz to newgrass and folk, and he attended countless free outdoor concerts at nearby American University. By age 15 he was writing songs, playing mandolin and singing in folk/rock bands, and setting lyrics by Shakespeare and Georg Büchner to new music for a local Summer theater group.
In college he worked as a modern dance accompanist and music director, which he continued in New York City until moving to rural New Hampshire in 1987, where he taught at small independent schools and played in rock and dance bands. Local jazz musicians took notice, and eventually the primarily self-taught pianist went on to teach jazz piano at Plymouth State University (1999-2004), and became a sought after sideman and session player for both local and touring jazz artists.
He moved to Europe in 2017 and currently lives in Florence, Italy, though he returns to the US regularly to perform with his trio and with The Buskers. In 2019 he also worked with Washington, DC area Happenstance Theater as music director/composer/performer in Pantheon, which premiered at Baltimore Theater Project.
Craig Jaster Trio 2017
Poor Little Jesus (single) 2018
Keep on Your Side of the Road (single) 2019
The Buskers 1999
Ray’s Vacation 2004
Spank That Tambourine 2009
Every Day We Play A New Song (EP) 2013
Sweet, Hot & Sassy Too Hot For Words 1997
Lester Hirsh Sweet Surrender 1998
The Parlor Band The Parlor Band 2000
Rik Pfenninger Driving Through My Day Gig 2006
Rik Pfenninger That’s Kool 2007
Diane Kordas Spinning Around the Sun… 2009
James Dunigan Hell or High Water (EP) 2009
Bradley Winfield Parker Done Turned On 2010
Joe Droukas Better Man 2013
Paul Hubert All Connected 2015