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NEW VINYL RELEASES!

Charlie has been pressing some of his earlier records on limited edition vinyl! The latest release is 'Gentlemen, I Neglected to Inform You, You Will Not Be Getting Paid'! All vinyl includes a free download of the entire record and we have some special bundle deals. Check it all out in Charlie's Offiical Store!

 
 
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DUO ALBUM w/ DIONNE FARRIS

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Charlie Hunter and Dionne Farris have planned to work with each other since they met on a Hip Hop tour working for two different groups in 1991. The inspiration for this project came in part from a mutual admiration for Dionne’s namesake, and an instant musical chemistry.

Charlie would play his guitar at soundchecks and Dionne would improvise vocally. Those special moments confirmed that a recording session would bear fruit. Dionne and Charlie both signed major recording contracts and schedules would not permit for them to collaborate during their individual promotional campaigns.

Through social media in 2012, Dionne and Charlie reconnected and got reacquainted. Charlie was on tour for his latest release, Not Getting Behind Is the New Getting Ahead and Dionne attended the concert in Atlanta. While catching up, Charlie shared his great experiences of releasing new music through PledgeMusic. Dionne was in the early stages of planning crowdsourcing avenues for Dionne Get Your Gunn and chose Pledge Music after hearing of Charlie’s success. Her project was funded and she has been touring with Russell Gunn throughout the U.S. since its release.

Hunter plays a custom bass/guitar hybrid instrument which feeds it’s signal into separate amplifiers. He helped innovate it in the 1990s, allowing him to hold down the high and low ends using an athletic fingerstyle technique all his own.

Farris brings her one of a kind vocal stylings, uncanny intonation and precise pitch accuracy to the duo. She compares singing jazz with an accompanist to the classic ice breaker exercise “the trust fall”. She feels Charlie has the ability to find and catch her regardless of where she may decide to land musically.
The time has come for the long awaited collaboration for Charlie and Dionne.

They have selected the songs written by Burt Bacharach & Hal David, Isaac Hayes, and Holland-Dozier-Holland; some of the most celebrated songwriters in the modern recording era.

You have the ability to help Dionne and Charlie attempt to fill the shoes that Ella Fitzgerald and Joe Pass have left behind and be a part of this fresh new album.

 
 

PODCAST SERIES: COMPARED TO WHAT

Sit down and relax, get comfortable and tune in to 'Compared To What' a new podcast by Charlie Hunter and Adam Dorn (aka Mocean Worker). “This was Charlie’s idea so blame him!” says co-host Dorn. "We wanted to create a conversation show. Some folks might think this is an interview show but really we just sit down with people that we really admire and get more of a sense of who they are and why they do what they do. Is it a music show? Not really. It’s just conversations about life in America seen through the eyes of creative Americans and Americants." Includes conversations with Les McCann, Nels Cline, Mike Clark and other. Tune in!

 
 

NEW ALBUM: PUCKER

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Following up on last year’s critically hailed Not Getting Behind Is The New Getting Ahead, guitarist Charlie Hunter and drummer Scott Amendola return with PUCKER, a lean and sinewy session marked by fierce grooves, caressing melodies, and startlingly intuitive interplay. While Not Getting Behind Is The New Getting Ahead focuses on Hunter's compositions, PUCKER focuses on Amendola's compositions!

“After 20 years of constant writing I figured it was time to take a break and explore the guitar again,” Hunter says. “I told Scott, if you’ve got enough music together we could make a record of your tunes. What I like is that it really fits right into what we’ve been doing all along, simple music with a lot of space. Scott’s not burdened by trying to be jazzy. He’s a drummer who’s really listening to everything with big ears. He was already driving the bus."

"I think the duo setting works so well because we meet in the middle, and there’s such a wide range of things we can call on. What I love about Scott is that I know he’s not going to play the obvious things when I call on something, and I know it’s going to groove.

 
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OMAHA DINER
Omaha Diner is Charlie Hunter (seven-string guitar), Skerik (saxophone), Steven Bernstein (trumpet) and Bobby Previte (drums).

"If it didn't get to number one, we don't play it." That's right! They only play songs that made it to #1 in the Billboard charts, but reconstructed by The Diner.

Click here to watch a video about the project!

BUY VINYL!

 

CHARLIE HUNTER / SCOTT AMENDOLA SHOW REVIEW
Check out this fine review by the Mercury News of Charlie and Scott's show at Duende in Oakland, CA on December 13th, 2012. Read it here!

 

PREMIER GUITAR INTERVIEW
Tune in Friday and Saturday night, December 14th and 15th to ShowGo.tv where they will be streaming video of both of Charlie's shows at The Mint in Los Angeles, CA. The show should start around 9pm pst.

WATCH HERE

 

PREMIER GUITAR INTERVIEW
Read an interview with Charlie where he talks with Premier Guitar about his new album, touring and everything in between. Read it here!

Also while on tour, Charlie Hunter stopped into Premier Guitar headquarters to talk about the blues and play some tunes.

 
CHARLIE HUNTER | SCOTT AMENDOLA
Not Getting Behind Is The New Getting Ahead


OUT NOW:
CD | VINYL | DOWNLOAD


"Scott Amendola and I went into Brooklyn Recording in May. We recorded our new duo record ‘Not Getting Behind Is The New Getting Ahead’ straight to 1/2 inch 15 ips tape. No headphones were used, and our main man Dave McNair mixed as we played. Old school…"

"Our intention in making this record was to tell a bunch of stories around the central theme of the album’s title,” says Hunter. "The new tunes are meant to evoke some of the things you might see in your travels through the USA these days. Scott and I wanted to think of each composition as a starting point for some kind of narrative."

Not Getting Behind Is The New Getting Ahead was written by Hunter while at home, inspired by his touring. "I love the nooks and crannies of the U.S., and this album is for the people living in these places.”

"One of the best elements of this new album is that we didn't use any headphones," adds Amendola. "We could hear everything naturally and acoustically. No mixing and no fixing, straight to ¼-inch tape. It sounds incredible. My drums haven't sounded this good ever. Everything sounded just as you were naturally playing it.”

Lauded studio engineer Dave McNair comments, “Dynamic subtlety is not very common on most modern records, but I wanted to present that to the listener in a way that makes you feel like you are sitting in front of the musicians. I think we succeeded. All of the songs were recorded live to two track analog tape, no overdubs, no editing. Just 100% live groove and vibe, no added artificial ingredients, and no mixing. There are not a lot of musicians that can pull it off this way, but Charlie and Scott are not only up to it, they THRIVE in that environment!”

DOWNLOAD A FREE MP3
"BLIND ARTHUR"

 
POLLSTAR INTERVIEW
Read an interview with Charlie!
 
CHARLIE HUNTER | SCOTT AMENDOLA
New Album & Vinyl
Scott Amendola and I went into Brooklyn Recording in May. We recorded our new duo record ‘Not Getting Behind Is The New Getting Ahead’ straight to 1/2 inch 15 ips tape. No headphones were used, and our main man Dave McNair mixed as we played. Old school…Except for the fact that it’ll be released as a cd and digital download but no Vinyl….What?! you go through all that and no vinyl? That’s where you come in. We’d love to be able to put this thing out on heavy duty 180 gram vinyl. What do you say? I might even get my mom’s old turntable repaired just to play it. — Charlie
GET VINYL NOW!
 
LOS ANGELES TIMES INTERVIEW
Guitarist Charlie Hunter talks 'jam bands,' jazz and going it alone
After nearly 20 years of recording, it’s remarkable how much ground Charlie Hunter has covered. Rising out of the Bay Area jazz scene with a freakish virtuosity on a custom eight-string guitar that allowed him to play bass and melody lines simultaneously, Hunter performed at Lollapalooza in 1993 and released the first of six albums for Blue Note in 1995. Since then he’s recorded with musicians that include drummer Leon Parker, vibraphonist Stefon Harris and Norah Jones, who sang on two tracks for Hunter’s 2001 album “Songs From the Analog Playground.”

Often lumped in with the so-called “jam band” crowd after earning a following on the festival circuit, Hunter’s music isn’t so easy to pigeonhole. Having touched on elements of soul-jazz, reggae and boisterous funk-rock in the past, Hunter recently set aside electronics for a cleaner tone well-suited for a 2010 solo album of classic covers chosen by his 100-year-old grandfather aptly called “Public Domain.”

This weekend Hunter comes to the Mint for two nights with drummer Scott Amendola, who’s played with Hunter since the ’90s. Keep reading for Hunter’s thoughts on moving beyond the jam-band scene, his ambivalence toward being labeled a jazz artist and the benefits of going it alone in today’s music industry.

After you first came up in the '90s it seemed like you were part this mini-movement that brought new life into jazz around the so-called “jam band” scene. Is that how it felt for you at the time?

I feel like we were more on the fringe of that world. I mean, it was certainly economically helpful at times, that’s for sure. Because you get into a situation where there’s very few outlets for your music, and you’ve got to go to the outlets that are going to help you make a living … I certainly hope my music is in no way, shape or form influenced by anything that would be known as a jam band. If it is, then I’m going to do something else. (laughs)

It doesn’t matter to me because you don’t really get to choose the era you live in and you do not get to choose the marketplace within which you have to function. I don’t enjoy that world very much — and I know it’d be smarter if I did because that’s where all the money is — but I’d rather play a really intimate show for 50 people and really feel like I did something that was a quality experience for everybody involved rather than one of those giant shows and you’re playing at excruciatingly loud volume levels.... There just comes a point where you reach a certain age and can no longer be a part of that. I understand the importance of it, and I’m totally for it for anyone who can deal with it. But it’s not for me, I’ve proven that I can’t do that.

For years there was always that debate of what constituted jazz music or a jazz artist. Did that ever come up with you, whether you "fit in" as a jazz musician?

Well, maybe so. I think when I was younger I let that get to me, but the fact of the matter is jazz really stopped when Louis Armstrong switched from cornet to trumpet. I’d have to be in a time machine to really be a "jazz musician," right?

I’ve spent -- and spend -- countless hours sitting with those recordings and learning as much as I can, and I have an affinity for that music. And hopefully in some form in the time that I’m living I can do that music some kind of justice. But generally I think that whole concept of whatever you want to call "jazz" . . . I don’t know of too many musicians who think in those terms.

Unless you’re Wynton Marsalis, who I think is brilliant and definitely managed to decide what [jazz] is and the parameters within which you have to function to be considered a jazz musician. And I think he's right, I would definitely agree with him. My whole issue is I want to try and make a living music that comes from what [Wynton] is doing. I would much rather listen to him play and do what he does than a guy who's my age or younger who's really earnestly "trying to be a jazz musician."

You're on a seven-string guitar now, and as you came up that was your thing: You were the guy who could play the bass and guitar at the same time. After so many years has that ever felt limiting?

That's an interesting question. . . Isn't this whole creative music thing partly making your own sound? And doesn't that mean learning all that's happened before you and using that as a toolbox to move into something that's more of an honest expression of your humanity? I feel like it's been a lot more work than it would've been if I had just played a guitar and a bass and just went from there. But I wouldn't trade it for anything. It actually simplifies things, and [allows me to] be more direct. And less desperate (laughs). Because there's really nothing more desperate than a guitar player playing a lot of notes.

You've been self-releasing albums since 2008. What inspired you to go that route?

Well, it wouldn't make any sense for me to do anything else. If you had a record company, why would you give me any money to sell so few records? Whereas I can make a record really inexpensively that sounds really good, and I can sell enough CDs to be able to make the next record. So it just made sense.

That's interesting because for a long time you were on Blue Note--

Yeah, but that was a different day. There still was a record industry and that whole way of doing business. Scott and I were talking about that, we were on Conan O'Brien, and we toured opening for Tracy Chapman and we did a million of these really high profile things and everyone was going, "Oh man, next week you’re going to SoundScan 10,000 records, you’re going to do this, you’re going to do that." And I'm just like, no matter how accessible we think what we do is, it's really not. It's going to be inaccessible to 90% of the public, so don’t even bother trying to reach them. They'll find you if they need to. Let's worry about the 10% -- and there’s a lot of people in that 10%. Worry about trying to find them, and you'll find those people.

 
VIDEO INTERVIEW AT JAZZ NETWORK WORLDWIDE
Check out this great informative interview with Charlie Hunter from the Jazz Standard in New York City. Hear Charlie talk about his experience with major labels, indie labels, and going fully independent, his view on fan recordings and free tape trading, and how he came to record his latest release 'Public Domain.'

WATCH THE INTERVIEW HERE
 
CHARLIE HUNTER TRIO LIVE STREAM FROM MARCH 4TH
On Friday March 4, the Charlie Hunter Trio was streamed live from the Telluride Jazz Festival in Telluride. He was joined by Eric Kalb (Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings and John Scofield) on drums and longtime Charlie Hunter collaborator John Ellis on saxophone, bass clarinet and Wurlitzer.

Visit www.telluridejazz.org to view the archived webcast.
 
SHOW REVIEW: BURLINGTON, VT 4/24/11
Read a great review of Charlie's show at the famous Nectar's Club on Main Street in
Burlington Vermont. Read it at AllAboutJazz!
 
NPR WORLD CAFE: CHARLIE HUNTER IN CONCERT
Coming into prominence in the early 1990s, Charlie Hunter is both incredibly swift with technique and open to the spontaneity of improvisation. Piecing together songs with his custom-made seven- and eight-string guitars, bass and drums, his songs are calculated and full of genuine expertise...Listen to the Entire Concert Here
 
RELIX 'PUBLIC DOMAIN' REVIEW
In an age when access to music is a question of when and how—not if—we are presented with a throwback: an album of songs that are all part of the public domain. All of the songs included on Public Domain were written during the first half of the 1900s and selected for inclusion on the album by guitarist Charlie Hunter’s grandfather, Sidney Greenman...Read the Full Review Here
 
DOWNBEAT MAG 'PUBLIC DOMAIN' REVIEW
Call it the gramophone approach. The physical disc of Charlie Hunter's second solo guitar album has the resonance of a shellac 78, even allowing its needle-riding grooves to be discernible to the touch. This packaging parallels the ancient material the perpetually modern improviser essays this time 'round. Curated by Hunter's 99-year-old grandfather, Public Domain is a yesteryear romp that accounts for 1920s foxtrots, Al Jolson nuggets and nods to an era when the Ziegfeld Follies ruled the entertainment roost...Read the Full Review Here
 

PART ONE | PART TWO
VIDEO INTERVIEW AND Q & A WITH CHARLIE HUNTER
Charlie sat down before his show at the Freight & Salvage in Berkeley, California on May 13th for an interview and to answer questions from the audience. Learn about Charlie's early years growing up in Berkeley, how "busking" in Europe has affected his playing, and what lead Charlie to moving from the 8-string to the 7-string guitar. Watch it here!
 
NPR APPEARANCE: CHARLIE HUNTER HAS 'NEGLECTED TO INFORM YOU.'
Charlie Hunter's new album is curiously titled 'Gentlemen, I Neglected To Inform You You Will Not Be Getting Paid.' "Well, it's a quote from a real, older, curmudgeonly musician that people have worked for," Hunter says. "And I cannot name names, but it really did happen. It really does happen; let me put it that way." Not that he would ever spring the same surprise on any of his bandmates."No way, no way, no way," Hunter says. "I tell them exactly how little money they'll be getting paid upfront."

He joined host Liane Hansen to talk about recording in monaural sound, answer some listeners' questions and discuss his unusual seven-string guitar, which allows him to play bass lines and guitar riffs at once. LISTEN TO THE INTERVIEW HERE!


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