Guitar great Charlie Hunter takes jazz duo to HSU Talks of his time with Michael Franti's Disposable Heroes of Hiphopricy

While multitasking guitarist Charlie Hunter may be known as the virtuoso who garnered attention in Michael Franti's Disposable Heroes of Hiphopricy and jazz drummer Scott Amendola may be known as one of the Bay Area's best, putting the two together creates an entirely new entity. The duo will display San Francisco's underground jazz scene in full form at Humboldt State University on Dec. 11.

"(Amendola) has a great balance of the intellectual and the visceral, plus he lets me listen to (late accordionist and TV persona) Lawrence Welk in the car," Hunter said.

"Rising out of the Bay Area underground jazz scene with his mastery of the eight-string guitar, Charlie Hunter continues to stun audiences with his ability to bust out tasty bass parts, melodic leads and swinging rhythms simultaneously," according to a CenterArts news release.

A man who spent his childhood on a commune in Mendocino County and in Berkeley, Hunter is known to have taken lessons from living guitar legend Joe Satriani.

"(Satriani told me to) practice, practice, practice -- not necessarily in that order," Hunter said.

He and Amendola are touring in support of their new LP "Not Getting Behind Is the New Getting Ahead," which was released in October. The record shines with masterful jazz-beats, hints of blues, fleeting fits of funk and improv moments -- all done with no added (or needed) studio-production embellishments.

On his time with Franti's Disposable Heroes?

"That band wasn't so much about the music, so (there was) no euphoria there," Hunter said. "Great guys and a great hang tho...that's where the fun was. Getting to be a fly on the wall of the major rock industry establishment was a learning experience as well."

Presumably a joke, Hunter said he plans to start a pop band next year. We'll have to wait and see.

"I'm starting a Top 40 band with (drummer) Bobby Previte, (trumpeter) Steven Bernstein and (saxophonist) (Eric) Skerik Walton -- really," he said. "Look for us in 2013."

Advance passes to see Hunter and Amendola may be purchased at the University Ticket Office (826-3928) and online at

"(I'm) always glad to play NorCal," Hunter said. "It's always a blast and I've been there so many times. We can't wait to see you all!"

If you go

What: The Charlie Hunter and Scott Amendola Duo

When: 8 p.m. Dec. 11

Where: HSU Van Duzer Theatre

Admission: $25 general, $5 HSU students, all ages