Tom Hunter and friends will present an evening of blues, jazz and gospel in a concert at Northwestern College's Christ Chapel at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 20. The concert will feature Hunter on piano, organ and "big, booming baritone" vocals, with Donald "Hy-Pockets" Robertson on drums and Jon "Gunner" Gunvaldson on guitar.
The concert is sponsored by the Orange City Arts Council and Northwestern College. Advance tickets are available at Orange City Arts Council and Dove Christian Bookstore, at $4 for adults, $3 for students. At the door, tickets are $7 and $6. Northwestern faculty, staff and students will be admitted free with their college ID. For more information, email OCArts@orangecityiowa.com or phone 712-707-6514.
Hunter will also perform at Northwestern's chapel service Friday morning at 10:05, appearing under the auspices of the Ronald R. Nelson Scholar and Artists in Residence Program. The public is welcome.
Hunter, from the Twin Cities, has been described by Eddy "The Chief" Clearwater as "dripping with soul." And "Blues on Stage" said: "When Hunter really gets wound up, watch out!"
Hunter's passion for music was born in his childhood church in Cornwall, N.Y., singing in the choir and watching his sisters and great-grandma at the piano. The preacher's son taught him to play the blues, he said. But Hunter didn't discover his piano talent until later, serving in the Navy.
He has played extensively with Bill Perry, also with Pete Kanaras, Murali Coryell, Little Sammy Davis, Big John Dickerson, Bernard Allison, Big Bang and Blue Chamber. In 1999 he joined Mary Cutrufello in support of the Allman Brothers Band's 30th anniversary tour.
According to "Blues on Stage," at one show, playing with Eddy Clearwater, Hunter "deftly handled everything the band was throwin' down. At one point, Eddy even walked over and leaned on the piano, just watching Tom and smiling."
Hunter does over 300 shows a year and has produced three albums, covering the musical spectrum from "smoky jazz to gut-bucket Chicago blues."
His repertoire includes Fly Me to the Moon, Tom Waits' New Coat of Paint, Ray Charles' Drown in My Own Tears, Billy Joel's New York State of Mind, Doc Pomus' The Night is a Hunter and Sonny Rollins' Tenor Madness.
For sound clips, check www.tomhunterblues.com or www.orangecityarts.net.