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CNBC's Steve Liesman Unscripted: Guitar Man

Gloria McDonough-Taub
Monday, 24 Jun 2013 | 9:14 AM ET
Liesman on Guitar: Not Just the Fed Beat
Monday, 24 Jun 2013 | 9:00 AM ET
It''s not all about the Fed. In this episode of CNBC Unscripted - viewers get an intimate look at Steve Liesman's other passion - Music.

Some might call Steve Liesman the wonkiest of wonks at CNBC and that may be partly true - partly. As the network's senior economics reporter he spends his days making complex economic data more understandable to the audience, something he calls an incredibly creative process and that he loves, but after work, when the sun goes down and the lights come up it's all about music.

When he was 16 years old, Liesman taught himself to play the guitar and hasn't put it down since. "I think something that makes a person a musician is when the music kind of runs through them the way blood runs through their veins."

Liesman plays in two bands; Stella Blue's Band and Steve Liesman and The Mooncussers. He says the name Mooncussers comes from the group Henry David Thoreau stumbled upon when he was exploring Cape Cod. The Mooncussers were land-based and perhaps the laziest pirates known to man. They used to light fires on the beach to trick ships into thinking they were lighthouses. On moonless nights, the ships would crash on the reefs and the "pirates" would then grab the booty. Lazy,but clever.

A self-proclaimed "Deadhead," Liesman has been a fan of the Grateful Deadsince he was 15. Recently he got a chance to play with Bob Weir, one the band's founding members in a benefit at the Sweetwater Music Hall near San Francisco. The event raised $50,000 for veterans.

So, is it hard keeping these two worlds separate? "I'm less likely to be thinking about the question for (Ben) Bernanke at a press conference when I am on stage as I am to have a song running through my head at a Fed conference."

Watch Steve Liesman as you have never seen him before in our new series "CNBC Unscripted."

By CNBC's Gloria McDonough-Taub