The Pace Report: "Charlie's Musical Domain" The Charlie Hunter Interview

Guitarist Charlie Hunter has been a innovator and trailblazer in jazz music. He’s gone against the grain by playing the seven-string guitar in which he’s created a voice unlike any guitarist that’s graced the annals of major guitarists like Les Paul, Wes Montgomery, and Slash. Hunter fuses rock, soul, blues, country, and jazz music styles as his signature trademark on guitar.

His latest disc, “Public Domain,” was inspired by Charlie’s grandfather who will turn 100 this year. He approached his grandfather about some of the songs that he grew up listening to and they came up with the list of song titles that were public domain. Also, record this as a solo guitar project where Charlie could add his own flavor to the mix. Recorded in one afternoon at The Bunker Studio in Brooklyn, this isn’t the follow-up from his 2000 solo guitar release “Solo 8-String Guitar.” Some of the new material includes: “Indiana,” “Danny Boy,” and “Ain’t We Got Fun.”

The Berkeley, California native was always surrounded by the guitar and took up the instrument at 10 years old. His mother played lots of blues and country music, so he was also influenced by the popular rock and soul music scene that dominated the Bay Area. At 12, he took guitar lessons from the legendary Joe Satriani. While in high school, he attended the same high school as saxophonist Joshua Redman and pianist Benny Green. It was upon graduating from school that he had his first seven string guitar designed and made for him. The seven string guitar concept is two bass strings, five guitar strings, and two pick ups. Charlie would leave the states and head overseas where he’d develop and create his own musical style that is now considered a very unique approach, yet, complicated way of playing the guitar.

When he returned from overseas, Charlie hooked up with rapper Michael Franti where he formed the group the Disposable Heros of Hiphoprisy. After a year, he left the group when he met saxophonist Dave Ellis and later formed The Charlie Hunter Trio.After his stint on Blue Note and Ropeadope Records, Charlie decided to take the music business in his own hands. He’s recorded his music independently to great success.

Currently, Charlie is on the road with his duo set which features himself and a drummer. For upcoming dates or to order his latest disc “Public Domain,” visit him on the web at www.charliehunter.com.

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