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"Tarbo Band" brings Latin rock and great guitar to the stage

By: Kenny Ehman

Date Posted: 1998-08-07

There is a new band in town, and it is stemming off of the heels of Okinawa's great Latino pop group Diamantes. Lead guitarist, "Tarbo", recently formed his own rock group, simply called the "Tarbo Band". The band currently plays mostly cover versions of Santana and other Latin rock, but Tarbo is also working on putting together some original tunes.

The idea behind the formation of the "Tarbo Band" was actually conceived a few years back, when Tarbo wanted to start to go back to some of his original "rock n roll" roots. "Since I was a kid I listened to Santana and other Latin rock bands. I wanted to play some more music that featured some heavier guitar solos," explained Tarbo.

Born in Urasoe, Tarbo began his musical career by first playing the guitar as a hobby. He quickly left the amateur ranks and built a reputation for himself during the early 1980's. He is mostly known for his contributions to the former rock band "Okinawa", but he has also worked with many other talented local musicians. He eventually joined Diamantes, and found himself propelled into the lime light with the rest of the band. "When we first started we used to play a few Santana songs and some other Latin rock, which is really something that I enjoyed," remarked Tarbo. That enjoyment can be seen in his new band, where Tarbo cranks out plenty of solid classical guitar solos. He plays the kind of hard rock that all rock fans will enjoy. His twenty years of experience playing the lead guitar have also helped Diamantes form a very tight knit group musically.

The "Tarbo Band" made their debut at this year's "Peaceful Love Rock Festival", playing in front of a very large and excited crowd. The band had the audience on their feet to the energetic sounds behind the eight member band. Tarbo also showed the crowd his talented guitar skills, giving rock fans a real treat, pounding out some great solos on his "Paul Lead Smith" guitar, the same guitar Santana uses.

Although Tarbo is enjoying music with his new band, fans of Diamantes do not have to worry about him leaving for a new career. He receives the full support from the rest of Diamantes' members, and some are backing him up in his new band. He also assures everyone that he still enjoys playing with Diamantes and will continue to do so, and that the "Tarbo Band" just gives him the opportunity to expand in other directions. Members of the Diamantes band explained, "The Tarbo Band gives him a chance to express himself more. He is the main member. With Diamantes he follows with the rest of the band."

Tarbo is now climbing up the musical ladder once again, working hard with his new band in between practices with Diamantes. His love for music has carried him through a profession which many people eventually wind up quitting. Tarbo however, is showing a new found enthusiasm for his music. "It's still very fun for me. there are times when I feel really tired to practice, but when I start playing I get into it very quickly," said Tarbo. "The music I am doing now can be enjoyed by both older fans and younger ones. It may be very nostalgic for some people, but it is also new for those who have not heard it before. I hope everyone can come and have fun watching us play."

For now, Tarbo is on cruise control playing the kind of music he has always enjoyed. "Eventually I hope to put out a CD," he said.

Anyone wishing to catch the " Tarbo band" playing live can do so at the Club "Pa'ti" on August 8 at 10 pm. Doors will open at 9 pm. Tickets will be sold at the door, but be sure to get there early. For more information please contact Club Pa'ti at 938-4970 or the Diamantes office at 939-3984. Club Pa'ti is located on Park Avenue in Okinawa City, which runs parallel to Gate 2 Street. Heading towards Route 330, walk up Park Avenue and "Pa'ti" will be located on your right. Diamantes fans can also see the group perform the night before on Friday, August 7 at 10 pm.

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