Bob Ventre

Bob Ventre is a mainstream professional jazz guitarist currently residing in Tuscarawas County Ohio.

A Scranton, Pennsylvania native, he began his professional career while attending high school and began performing locally with a nostalgia big band and a combo, which worked at several Pocono Mountain resorts. Shortly after graduating he joined the Glenn Miller Orchestra under the direction of world-renowned jazz clarinetist Buddy DeFranco. He toured the continental United States and Europe with the orchestra and also as a member of DeFranco's quartet.

Later he went on to become personal guitarist to pop singers Bobby Vinton and Al Martino, as well as Israeli television and radio songstress Aliza Kashi and Singer/Dancer/Comedian Nelson Sardelli.

His career additionally aimed toward New York City venues and Pocono and Catskill Mountain resorts, where as a house orchestra member, continually played back-up for such entertainers as: Vic Damone, Bobby Rydell, Sergio Franchi, Enzo Stuarti, Chita Rivera, Rita Moreno, Vivian Reed, Jerry Lewis, Gene Barry, Dick Haymes, Vaughn Monroe, Helen O’Connell, Bob Eberle, Jack Jones, Barbara Eden, Joey Heatherton, Frankie Laine, Anna Marie Alberghetti, Buddy Greco, Tiny Tim, Georgia Gibbs, Abbe Lane, Lorna Luft, Frankie Avalon, Mimi Hines, Jim Bailey, Andy Griffith, Tony Martin & Cyd Charisse, Diahann Carroll, Don Rickles, Julie Budd and Bernadette Peters among many others.

From 1994-96 he led a mainstream core jazz trio with bassist Tony Marino and percussionist Tom Whaley at the Ramada Inn in Clarks Summit (PA). The group featured weekly guest artists, i.e. world-renown trombonist and multiple Down Beat Poll Winner Jimmy Knepper; studio musician and Saturday Night Live band member, saxophonist Lew Delgatto; trumpeter John Eckert, a NYC studio musician and jazz artist; composer/arranger/trombonist Tom McIntosh; jazz/classical French horn virtuoso Bobby Routch; substitute bassists Steve Gilmore, Steve LaSpina, Scott Lee, Roy Cumming, Paul Rostock; substitute percussionists Glenn Davis and David Earl Johnson; and many other jazz artists from the Pennsylvania and New York City area.

In the late1990's, he began touring the continental United States and Canada as assistant-conductor/co-arranger and accompanist to entertainer Charlie Prose and singer David Grayson.

Following a June 1998 engagement with Prose and Grayson at the Capitol Civic Centre in Manitowoc, Wisconsin, Ventre fell in love with the area, establishing a permanent residence there later that year.

Also proficient on mandolin, tenor banjo and ukulele, while a Wisconsin resident he performed regularly with the pit orchestras at the Weidner Center in Green Bay and Fox Valley Performing Arts Center in Appleton, participating with national tours of West Side Story, The Full Monty, Fiddler On The Roof, Thoroughly Modern Millie, 42nd Street, Chicago and Annie. He also appeared in pops concerts with the Fox Valley Symphony and with Green Bay and Appleton area jazz combos, big bands, and in back-up orchestras for headline acts appearing in Wisconsin-area casinos.

In recent years he has also performed with impersonator Rich Little and world-renowned flautist Sir James Galway. He is also an endorsed user of Eastman Guitars, WEBER Mandolins, DEERING Banjos and Black Diamond Strings.

Formerly on the faculty of Tuscarawas County Center for the Arts, he continues to maintain an advanced private teaching practice on guitar, mandolin and banjo.

Currently Bob predominantly performs in the Cleveland area with his jazz trio and quartet and with other ensembles, as well as occasionally in Canton and Akron. He also has been a member of the Mansfield and Youngstown symphonies for several pops concerts.

Also co-founder of the jazz trio ShoMonGus with bassist Jeff Beitzel and percussionist Clint Alguire, the group performs the songbooks of Wayne Shorter, Thelonious Monk, and Charles Mingus in various venues and for other events around Tuscarawas County (OH).

His latest projects involve collaborations with vocalist Beth Gray, an Alliance (OH) resident, and trios and quartets with Cleveland-area musicians, including multiple reed artists Bruce Koscheck and Ed Michaels, and bassists Jack Stewart, Jack Hrusch, and Brian Dorr.

He is a member in good standing of Local 4 Cleveland, American Federation of Musicians.