Steve Tarshis, ‘a gentleman and a great guy’


Volume 116, No. 4April, 2016

Stuart Ziff

Steve Tarshis and I met back in 1984 working at the Guitar Study Center. We discovered that we both had a deep love for the blues. I asked him if he’d like to come to a jam session I put together with what would become the band Nine Below Zero, and he said sure. We had never played a note together and that afternoon we played as though we’d known each other for 50 years. We both knew what to do and when to do it. It was the beginning of a long and productive friendship. We spent many hours listening to the guys who influenced us, sharing our thoughts on the music. And through that we became the best of friends. We were always there to support each other musically. It was never competitive, but we certainly pushed each other to raise the bar and play with authenticity and style. I’ll never forget the things I learned from playing with him. He was a gentleman and a great guy. Those of us who knew him were blessed and lucky to be around him. His guitar rings true in the canyons of NYC and he had “the grease.”