It seems like just yesterday when record store sections for Charlie Hunter only had a few Blue Note albums, including Hunter’s jazz version of Bob Marley’s Natty Dread. The Berkeley guitar phenomenon has over two dozen albums out now, becoming more prolific as the years roll by. His latest, Baboon Strength, is the first that Hunter has self-released, and it has a freedom of melodic spirit separate from jazz’s esoterica—there’s even a song dedicated to Karen Carpenter—recorded in Brooklyn with vintage analog keyboardist Erik Deutsch and snap-sharp New York drummer Tony Mason. Hunter hits the North Bay twice in the upcoming week: on Thursday, May 21, at 142 Throckmorton Theatre (142 Throckmorton Ave., Mill Valley. 8pm. $18–$20. 415.383.9600), and on Sunday, May 24, at the Hopmonk Tavern (230 Petaluma Ave., Sebastopol. 8:30pm. $15–$20. 707.829.7300).Gabe Meline
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