James Hunter toured Australia in 2009. I saw him at the Thornbury Theatre in Melbourne and was really impressed with his energetic soul and R’n’B blend of new material and timeless arrangements. He was touring on the back of 2008’s The Hard Way which to me pretty much reflected his on-stage passionate performances.
Along with his 2006 Grammy-nominated People Gonna Talk, he has earned two Billboard Blues #1’s, tours with Aretha Franklin, Van Morrison, Etta James, and Willie Nelson, multiple performances on high-rating US TV shows, and critical raves generally.
Minute By Minute is due out in the USA on February 26 2013 on GO Records/Fantasy with a worldwide release to follow in March 2013. This marks the first album credited to The James Hunter Six, a change made in recognition of the collective talent and loyalty of his longtime cohorts Lee Badau (baritone saxophone), Damian Hand (tenor saxophone), Jonathan Lee (drums), Jason Wilson (double bass) and Kyle Koehler and Andrew Kingslow sharing keyboard/piano duties. The Six have hung together through multiple albums and more than two decades of international touring, from small clubs to the Hollywood Bowl.
Interestingly, Minute By Minute is the first James Hunter album to be recorded in the US, and the first to be produced by Grammy winner and co-founder of the influential Daptone Records – Gabriel Roth, aka Bosco Mann Productions. “It really does have a leaner and punchier sound than our previous albums,” Hunter says of Roth’s production touch on Minute by Minute.
Hunter will be touring the USA in February/March and Europe March/April. Hopefully we’ll see him back in Australia soon.
I’ll leave the last words on this subject to someone who should know.
“James Hunter is one of the best voices, and best kept secrets, in British R’n’B and Soul. Check him out.” – Van Morrison