Jazz guitarist Ron Eschete was born in 1948 in Houma, Louisiana and not surprisingly his early influences were jazz guitar virtuosos Jim Hall, Howard Roberts, and Wes Montgomery. After getting his initial guitar at the age of 14, Eschete joined a quartet and was working clubs in Louisiana before he had even graduated from high school playing jazz guitar music. He attended Loyola University where he majored in classical guitar and minored in flute. While there he studied with classical guitar player Paul Guma. Immediately after Eschete left Loyola he was tapped to tour with Buddy Greco. Whilst on tour with Greco, Eschete set his sites on the Los Angeles music scene. In 1970 Eschete relocated to California playing and recording with vibraphonist Dave Pike. Then in 1975 he joined forces with pianist Gene Harris and swiftly established his reputation as a premier jazz guitar accompanist while also releasing his initial collection book of jazz guitar tabs and jazz guitar tablatures.
Over the years Ron Eschete has played with the best talents in jazz including Ella Fitzgerald, Sarah Vaughan, Diana Krall, Dizzy Gillespie, Milt Jackson, Ray Brown, and many others! Eschete has appreared on the Tonight Show with Diana Krall, The Merv Griffin Show with The Mort Lindsey Orchestra, and The Mike Douglas Show with Buddy Greco. He has played nearly every notable jazz place in the southern California area such as The Catalina Bar and Grill, The Jazz Bakery, Steamers, Donte’s, Carmelo’s, The Parisian Room, and The Lighthouse to name but a few. He has toured regularly and has played important venues from New York to San Francisco.
Eschete cites a 1988 gig in San Diego as a vital turning point in his career. There he started to shed his notoriety as the quintessential sideman – he stepped to the center of the stage and began playing his own material. Long considered one of the best guitarists in mainstream jazz by musicians and listeners alike, he has now taken over the reins and “progressive leader” may possibly be a much better name says preeminent jazz critic Zan Stewart. In 1994 he released his first solo recording for Concord Jazz Record Company called “A Closer Look”, showcasing his masterful fingerstyle jazz guitar sound and his seven-string Benedetto archtop guitar. In addition to this solo recording Eschete has recorded 3 CDs with his trio: “Softwinds”, “Rain or Shine”, and “Mo’ Strings Attached”.
While Ron Eschete’s career has been largely focused on performance, this master jazz guitar player and musician has devoted nearly twenty five years of his life to teaching music at quite a few schools and universities including North Texas State University, Utah State University, Loyola University, Louisiana State University at New Orleans, California State Universities at Long Beach and Fullerton, and Musician’s Institute in Hollywood. Ron has been described as a masterful music chameleon. Switching melodic lines and ideas with fantastic efficiency and beauty, he transforms from accompanist to soloist and from musical master to musical mentor. Fortunately for aspiring guitarists, Ron has published various instructional jazz guitar tab books that teach his harmonic strategies and chord melody soloing concepts.