Jazz guitarist Charlie Hunter’s Friday, Aug. 3 performance at The Sierra Meadows Lodging & Event Center in Ahwahnee has been nearly 25 years in the making.
Reid Spice, one of the co-owners of Sierra Meadows, said he could not help but be captivated in 1995 by Hunter’s uncanny ability to simultaneously play the guitar and bass on his custom-made seven-string guitar. “Once you see him once, you just don’t forget it,” Spice said.
But Spice is not the only one to have taken note of the jazz artist’s talents. Hunter has worked alongside musical giants like Norah Jones, Yasiin Bey (better known as Mos Def), D’Angelo and John Mayer over the course of his nearly three decades in the music industry. Spice said this easily makes Hunter the most recognizable name to have played at the Sierra Meadows concert series since its inception two years ago.
“I just hope that I can play in tune and on time,” Hunter said jokingly.
Of course, with a more notable name comes more expensive ticket pricing. Tickets for the show are $15 in advance and $20 at the door, up from what Spice said is usually $6 to $10 in advance. Spice said he hopes this does not turn away any prospective attendees.
“This is a national touring act, it costs a little more to get those folks to come down here,” Spice said. The Charlie Hunter Trio is in the middle of a tour that will see them travel as far as England.
Spice hopes the notability helps attendance, which has ranged between 30 and 380 people in the series’ previous five shows.
“We’re really just hoping for a good turnout. As a musician, there’s nothing more disappointing than playing for an empty room,” Spice said.
This is the second-to-last show of the concert series, with the final one being Dirty Cello, a blues and bluegrass band from San Francisco, on Sept. 15.
The concert begins at 7:30 p.m. Sierra Meadows, formerly a golf and country club, is off Highway 49 about 2 1/2 miles north of Oakhurst.