Introducing Robert J Hunter

11013344_794197143982534_1681661975544481077_nI want to introduce you all to the music of Robert J Hunter who I discovered through the music site Tradiio. Here is a musician who’s sound has well and truly captured my full attention as he delivers his own style of blues that is filled with edgy guitars and outstanding vocals. It’s great to hear that the blues is alive and kicking!

Robert J Hunter was born to be a musician and his musical  journey started when he was 14. Since then he has been busy creating music  which has included various bands including Twelve Ton Trouble. Now he has decided to walk his own path and in my opinion, he sounds much better for it.

I want to give you more information about the man of the hour, so who better to ask than Robert himself. I am pleased that he has taken the time to answer some of my questions as I am a fan. We talked about his influences, his music and more.

Who or what inspired you to become a musician and which musicians have influenced your sound?

I joined my first band when I was 14, formed from the ashes and pieces of one of the few bands back home. In Alderney where I grew up there was little to do and hardly a music scene but I knew from my first live performance that I wanted to be a musician. If I had to pick only a handful of influences I would have to say Rory Gallagher, Howling’ Wolf, Peter Green, Black Crows and Wilko Johnson.

I love how your music has so much soul in its sound, is this an important part when writing new songs?

I have always written for as long as I remember allowing me to develop my own sound early on. The most important thing for me when writing is not necessarily how the songs sound or what I play but the story I tell. If I don’t feel 100% emotionally involved in what I am playing it’s simply not for me.

Talking about writing songs, which is your favourite from your album ‘Songs for the Weary’ and why?

If I have to pick one I would certainly choose ‘Flaws’. The song for me has developed and changed so much since I wrote it. I love seeing the progression of a song. In the studio it was almost an after thought for the album but I’m so glad that we added it to the record, we recorded it live in one take.

I see you have been in the studio, what can we expect from the new music?

All I can say at this point is that we came out of the studio with something we are very proud of. We locked ourselves in the studio for five days, got our heads down, worked hard but had an amazing time producing something which to us is truly special, I hope everyone else thinks so too. If people have seen us live they will recognise some of the songs, if you’ve only ever heard ‘Songs for the Weary’ and liked it, I think you’ll be in for a treat.

What’s your future plans and goals for your music?

Sadly I cannot predict what the future will bring for myself or the band but i’d like to think we can keep doing this for a very long time. It’s all I need, It’s all I want. Tours are on the horizon and all bookings considered, if you’re reading.

Finally, If the world was going to end and you had enough time to listen to ONE album, what would it be and why?

Such a tough question as my opinion changes with the wind, but at this time id have to say ‘What’s going on’ by Marvin Gaye.

As an album it flows perfectly. I love the idea of book ends in art and this is a perfect musical loop, I love it. In terms of the song writing it cuts deep and really resonates. Marvin was doing something new for Motown, taking what at the time for him was a huge controversial risk and in doing so created one of the best albums ever to be recorded. It’s not necessarily my all time favourite album but I adore it dearly.

February 2014 saw the release of his EP ‘Blistering Soul’ which grabbed a lot of people’s attention with his unique vocal style and edgy guitars. All the great reviews he received were well deserved. Then a year later he released his album ‘Songs for the Weary’ which is an album that I don’t think I will get tired of listening to. It showcases a real genuine musical talent who has a wonderful song writing ability and a voice that is insanely good!

Let me talk about his vocals, I rate him as good as the likes of Steve Smyth and Tarq Bowen who are huge favourites of mine. These are the types of voices that are growly, a little bit raw and ooze soul, bit like Tom Waits or Joe Cocker. You can not learn to sing this way, you either have it or you don’t and Robert J Hunter certainly has it! As for the music, it has everything you need from your dirty blues sound including awesome guitar riffs, foot tapping rhythm and some harmonica playing. What more could you ask for? All of these elements are layered and arranged in a way that is not only makes great listening but also feels like a homage to the genre they call the blues.

You are probably wondering which songs caught my attention the most and probably guessing because I am a fan that this decision was tough. You are right! Every time a hear this album new favourites jump out at me as I discover something new in a song. The songs that continued to stand out include ‘Turning’ with it toe tapping sound with killer riffs and ‘See you in Hell’ which has an old school blues feel with some cool harmonica playing. ‘Flaws’ is the song that continues to stand out from the rest with it’s more emotional and soul drenched sound. For me, this song showcases everything that makes Robert’s music stand out including incredible vocals and a great knack for song writing. It’s such an outstanding song that I can not praise enough.

Overall, this is by far one of my favourite purchases from the year and when you listen to the songs you can understand why. If you are a fan of the blues then this is the album for you and if your are not a fan of this sound, still give this album a listen as you might just like it. Grab a copy of this must have album from the usual online stores at Amazon and iTunes or alternatively head over to his Bandcamp page (click HERE).

I know Robert said during his interview that he cannot predict the future but I really hope it involves more EP’s/albums and gigs. I think the world needs more of his style of the blues and I hope to hear his music live soon by catching one of his shows. If you want to find out more about the music by Robert J Hunter then head over to his website at RobertJHunter.co.uk where you will also find out about his latest shows. Alternatively, head over to his social media sites at Facebook and Twitter.

As always, I want to remind you all that musicians like Robert need the support of their fans to continue their musical path. To help out, buy the music, get to gigs and help spread the word about this music that matters to you. This is what I do as I believe its what music fans should be doing! So, go and support the music that matters to you today, maybe this will now include the music by Robert J Hunter.