Sonny, Redcarpet Jet

“If people don’t stop hating and not respecting one another, we’re going to destroy this planet and loving one another/respecting each other with Love, will make the world a safer and happier existence.” – @sonnyhntr

Episode #274 : A.V.A Live Radio Behind The Music with Jacqueline Jax

Jacqueline Jax logo photoGETTING TO KNOW SONNY HUNTER
by Jacqueline Jax host of A.V.A Live Radio

My first instrument was drums at age 10…
then I felt playing guitar was more of my calling. My parents were able to send me to guitar lessons and I even took some classical and jazz classes. I lived and breethed guitar and bought records of numerous bands from Rock, R&B, Funk, Jazz and was influenced by many guitarist from Jimi Hendrix, Sly & The Family Stone, The Babys, Black Sabbath, Isley Brothers, Rick James, Ronnie Montrose, VanHalen, Yes, Procol Harem, Jeff Beck, KingCrimson, Mott the Hoople, Deep Purple, Roxy Music, David Bowie, so a wide genre of music tastes and those artist inspired me to create music that touches people and I’ve tried to create music/a groove that people can either dance to or say, “hmmmm that’s different”

The basic message I’m sending on Anxious is, If people don’t stop hating and not respecting one another, we’re going to destroy this planet and loving one another/respecting each other with Love, will make the world a safer and happier existence. I’m not speaking about sex but the innuendo is there but my message is more about loving one another and that’s what everybody seeks and wants.

I came up with the groove first, then put the lyrics with it and I reflected on my own quest to find true love and noticed topics happening in world news and combined the emotions and just came up with the lyrical story.

I intentionally titled the CD as “Truth Teller” . I’ve recorded 3 songs that were produced (Todd Osterhouse) and mastered (Howie Wienberg) and each song has a message dealing with life, so I’m telling a story for the listener to feel, while I sing about real subjects. I have one song titled “You Want Attention” which is a humorous “tongue n cheek” topic about peoples social behavior, and I have a song titled “Times in Life” which has a global social impactful topic dealing with cancer, which is a classic rock song with the main subject of getting rid of cancer. Its not a sad song, its not a preachy song, it’s definitely rock and its proven to be an automatic applause generator.

I’ll be marketing the CD via my website (under construction) and I’ll have a company handle distribution for I don’t know what to expect with sales but I have to be ready to handle those orders. I was signed to The Fiction Label, an independent record label for 3yrs in Los Angeles that went bankrupt in the beginning of my EP recording and currently I have no interest in signing with a record label. I’d rather handle as much of those typical duties that a record label handles or is expected to handle. The marketing will also be supported by a Publicist or PR agent to get the word out to a mass audience

Sonny Hunter
Currently I live in Houston…
and my band members are in Austin, so it’s a long distance affair…lol The music scene in Houston varies, there’s a lot of Hip Hop, there is a rock population and jazz.

House of Blues, Fitzgeralds, Warehouse Live, BFE Rock Club
 are great places to go.  I like to play tennis and I’m a big nascar /car racing fan.

Music business…
If it wasn’t for music fans, it would be dead. I feel the major labels fell asleep by not staying abreast with how technology was changing the market and taking money from artists and the record industry. Many fat cat CEO’s want their A&R’s to only bring talent that copies whatever is hot for the moment. Artist development is no longer. You have to treat your music as a business and if you don’t understand what steps are necessary to put a product out to the market, YOU BETTER LEARN

Pros and cons …
Haha, unfortunately I’ve had the chair pulled out from me when the indie label I was signed to for 3yrs went bankrupt. This industry has a history of not being fair, so music commerce and record labels have always had a strained relationship with the artist. Acknowledging the video from “30 Seconds to Mars and the EMI Records fight” was more high level than I but I still felt the frustration and pain that Jared Leto went thru. As an artist, many want to TRUST the experts/the industry professionals. Today’s reality should always bear caution to the wind.

How are you over coming the hurdles and pitfalls…
Good question, but what I’m trying to do is still trust people but I don’t like negative & fake personalities. Its best to surround yourself with positive people who want to do the right thing. I still want to believe in “treat others as you want to be treated”…haha

Social media…
It’s reach, it has given artists/bands an excellent vehicle of reaching fans globally and connecting with fans and building a relationship
. Have you found any challenges that you’ve had to overcome? Well, time is the teacher in the game of life and I haven’t learned everything that can & does happen. I’d have to say “practice makes it perfect” and that includes lyric writing, dealing with producers, communicating with session players and band mates. Nothing goes smoothly…lol

Singles vs an album… 
For my project, I’m doing both. With the down slope of album purchases, it behooves me to offer and sale singles as well as the EP. Technology has helped and spoiled a large population and has made many users, lazy. The market of mobile technology has given users a tool that can record/copy music and its available to play in your car stereo systems and people want to play DJ and have more control in what they are listening to. Days of going into a record store and spending time browsing and buying an album, is slipping into non-existence.
Talk about the differences in your marketing strategy to support your preference.

When SiriusXM came on the market, satellite radio broke open, similar benefits was when MCI won the anti-trust lawsuit against AT&T and consumers had more of a choice of phone services. Sirius did the same thing but for radio and now there are some great radio stations that aren’t owned by the corporate giants that allow indie artist/bands to submit their material to them. You need at least $100K to get on the major radio stations, now all you really need is a computer and hitting that ENTER key gets your music to go around the world without the headaches of dealing with record labels. I understand the importance of PR Agents/Publicists, for it is their job to get your name to radio stations, into magazines etc., so I have that connection as well, once my website gets completed….lol, money… money…money

I would love to have 5 minutes alone with…
If I could have 5mins to speak with David Bowie, I’m sure I would learn plenty from him about songwriting, stage presence, showmanship, video production and how to select studio producers. I have immense respect for his creativity, uniqueness and industry longevity

When I selected the 3 songs to record…
I felt I needed to show my range of current grooves, music style and vocal style. Robert Palmer (god rest his soul) put out 14 albums and had only 2 hits. Artists roll the dice when creating music for we rarely know whats gonna be the hit but I also wanted to put songs out that I know I will enjoy singing and perform well. Hope this answers the question

I am most afraid of… someone attacking me on stage

My personal definition of success is.. completing a goal and being completely satisfied with that accomplishment

Name one success story that you are particularly proud of…
Getting back into the studio and finishing this current project without the help of a record label, including having the art work, photos and getting radio stations accepting and putting these songs on their rotation. All of these steps is one success progression

After my personal experience being with a failed record label…
I took a different career path, I got out of the music business, for me the experience shattered me and I had to find my passion again. Before my Dad passed in 2011, he asked me if I was going to go back into music for he knew that was my passion and his opinion was that he felt that I should.

My over all goal for my life & career is…
have a music legacy from a recorded product and video that will be enjoyed and respected
3 Ways that I challenge myself and how each one moves me forward towards my goal.

1) Writing down what I have to accomplish. Seeing it written keeps me focused

2) I strive to get something accomplished each day relating to my music progression. This helps me in managing time

3) Persistent guitar playing and learning scales and chord progressions. Its what calms me and keeps me happy

Twitter: @sonnyhntr
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