It's a unique instrument, this eight-string guitar. The five-guitar-string, three-bass-string instrument was specially-made at the request of musician Charlie Hunter. He's still developing it.
"It's a whole different instrument. It has elements of guitar, elements of bass and elements of a drum set," he said.
Hunter plays in Juneau on Saturday with Stephen Chopek on drums, Chris Lovejoy on congas and John Ellis on tenor sax. The appearance is part of Juneau Jazz and Classics, and part of a Pacific Northwest tour for Hunter and his band.
They'll be playing selections from Hunter's latest album, plus some new tunes. The group just finished a recording due out in September, which doesn't have a name yet. The album features instrumentals and a slew of guest vocals, Hunter said.
Described as one of Blue Note Records' most popular young jazz artists, Hunter has collaborated with D'Angelo on "Voodoo" and Kurt Elling on the Steppenwolf Theatre production of "Streets of America."
Hunter lives in New York City but spends about half the year on the road. He's "juiced" about gigs in Juneau, Anchorage and Ketchikan, he said.
Hunter's first Blue Note Records release was "Bing Bing Bing!" in 1995. "Charlie Hunter" is his latest album, featuring percussion-driven jazz music with Latin and Brazilian influences.
Charlie Hunter plays two shows at 7 and 9 p.m. Saturday at Mike's Place.