Podcast 290: Craig Ventresco

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By Jason and The Fretboard Journal. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.

For years, ragtime guitarist Craig Ventresco was one of the music world's best-kept secrets: The only way to see him was to catch him in his hometown of San Francisco, playing a solo show at a small cafe or with his gypsy jazz band, Gaucho. He seldom left the city and recordings weren't a big part of his career.

Like many others, when COVID-19 and shelter-in-place orders hit, Craig and partner Meredith Axelrod turned to the internet to keep performing. Here's where things get interesting: With a minimalist setup, Ventresco and Axelrod started live streaming their performances on Facebook... not once a month or weekly, but every single night. As of this interview, Ventresco and Axelrod were up to 100-plus shows. And their unique take on ragtime guitar is suddenly finding new fans around the globe. On this week's podcast, we chat with Ventresco about growing up in Maine, getting turned on to 78 records, the years he spent busking around SF, his role on the 'Crumb' soundtrack, and his life online. We also talk about his Fraulini guitars, the music he's been obsessing over and much more. Links: Meredith Axelrod's Facebook page (where Craig and Meredith perform every night at 8pm PT): https://www.facebook.com/meredithaxelrod

Their tip jars: Paypal.me/meredithaxelrod Venmo: @meredithaxelrod

Fraulini Guitars: http://fraulini.com

Fretboard Journal: https://www.fretboardjournal.com (Use the discount code PODCAST when you check out and save $5 off any order)

This episode is sponsored by Retrofret Vintage Guitars and Mono Cases.

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