273 – Charlie Hunter: Master of the Hybrid Guitar, His Favorite Drummers, Valuing Uniqueness Over Versatility
With a career spanning three decades and almost 20 albums, Charlie Hunter consistently ups his game as an innovative writer and bandleader. He has worked with the likes of Norah Jones , Mos Def, John Mayer, D’Angelo and countless others. He is widely considered the authority on the seven and eight – string guitar, and continues to stun audiences with his ability to simultaneously bust out tasty bass parts, melodic leads and swinging rhythms.
Hunter has previously recorded for the venerable Blue Note label, Concord, Ropeadope, GroundUP and others. His recent independent venture is steered by his motivation to release music that most inspires him. Critics have touted his genius technique, but it’s his profound artistic sensibility that propels his original music. Hunter’s signature style of writing and performing has secured his place as one of today’s great guitarists.
In this episode, Charlie talks about:
- Developing his three-part playing style
- The drummers he’s played with over the years, and what they have in common
- The key to effective duo playing
- Projects with singers Kurt Elling and Lucy Woodward, and why Derrek Phillips is the drummer for both
- “The music education industrial complex” and how it is especially a disservice to drummers
- Using quarantine to dismantle and reconstruct his playing and approach
- How the live music industry could be reimagined from the ground up