Don Latarski About the Educator

Don Latarski [guitarist/composer] Vintage Guitar Magazine describes Latarski as, “...a guitarist of great taste and chops to match.” Latarski displays a style that incorporates all American genres from blues and jazz to rockabilly and swing. His compositions form the backbone of the band¹s repertoire and give the group it¹s unique and deeply personal twist on the blues. Originally from the Detroit, Michigan area, Latarski has been in Oregon since 1973. Since this time, he has developed a style of music that draws heavily on the blues and jazz traditions: forming a style uniquely American. He has written numerous books on the subject of guitar playing and his recordings have become synonymous with Blues and Jazz.

Don Latarski & Rue de Blues have been on the blues scene since 1995 when they formed to play a set on the main stage at the Eugene Celebration in Eugene, Oregon (USA). Since that time they’ve released two CD’s: DEEP PLAY, RUE 2 and Eden Hall Sessions, a live CD.

Formed around the writing and playing of guitarist Don Latarski and featuring the vocalese of longtime Latarski collaborator Marilyn Keller, the band rips through jazz inflected original blues as well as jump, swing, jungle boogie, sultry Americana slow blues and shuffles. The sound of the group is both tight and experienced. They blend the gut wrenching emotion of blues with a sublime twist of jazz. It’s blues for the modern times. The band also features Mark Schneider on bass, Jason Palmer on drums and Devin Sanders on Hammond organ.

Don Latarski is also adjunct instructor and head of guitar studies at the University of Oregon School of Music where he teaches individual guitar lessons and numerous classes: MIDI for musicians, Jazz Guitar I, Blues Guitar I, Blues Guitar II, Funk Guitar, Beginning Recording Technique, Guitar Theory Basics and Guitar Technology. He's been at the U of O since 1982. He holds degrees in Political Science and Music from the University of Oregon.

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