Saturday, December 12, at 8 p.m.
Two of our favorite performers, Craig & Meredith renew songs taken from 78s and old cylinders recorded before any of us were born—old vaudeville tunes and popular songs: Eubie Blake and Scott Joplin are no strangers here and Blind Blake is an old, familiar friend. In other words, Tin Pan Alley at its best is what these two are up to! Craig, whose casual virtuosity was honed on the street corners of San Francisco, takes up the most complicated guitar arrangements and swings them with rhythmic verve. Craig was the guitarist in the ragtime-revival trio “Bo Grumpus.” And you may have heard him featured on the soundtracks for Terry Zwigoff’s films “Crumb” and “Ghost World.” Meredith, whose rich contralto seems to emerge from a ‘20s recording—her version of Bessie Smith’s “Backwater Blues” comes to mind—also plays superb rhythm guitar. Together they’re likely to make us believe the shop is an old speakeasy and the ‘20s high rollers are still rolling. Ain’t we got fun!
Craig Ventresco is the most “authentic” neo-ragtime/acoustic blues wrangler in the country…his commitment to this stuff is admirable; in a way, it’s the same kind of proselytizing fervor that fired Clapton and the original Rolling Stones.” – Joe S. Harrington, New York Press
“Meredith Axelrod sings and plays guitar as if she really returned to the pre-mic days. We’re not talking revisionist copy of so and so from way back when; we’re talking as if we plucked an original out of the era and time-traveled her to bless us with a taste of who we were when we had guts.” – JL Stiles
“Craig Ventresco and Meredith Axelrod make very good music together . . . “ – from the review of their CD, Craig Ventresco & Meredith Axelrod, by Jack Rummel
Tickets are $20 in advance, $25 at the door
Call for tickets: 415-789-0846