Biography

Karen Hunter takes her audience on a sublime musical journey with evocative melodies that draw from a fusion of world music and rootsy grooves. Karen loops voice, guitar & mandolin to create heart charged soundscapes blending her many influences in an entertaining and original fashion.

Renown as a dynamic and engaging live act, Karen has opened for Ani Difranco, Tania Maria, Toni Childs, Richard McGuinn, Blue House and Suzanne Vega as well as countless local New Zealand artists.

Karen has supported many touring artists on guitar, mandolin and backing vocals at many of New Zealands wonderful transformational festivals. Some of these are Matiu Te Huki (NZ) , Redwood Reider (US), Kailash Kokopele (SW)  and Mama Yeva. American Jazz singer Rhiannon and Kiwi icons Shona Laing and Dave McArtney .

In her mid 40’s Karen completed a Masters of Music in Composition in 2009 and taught at tertiary education institutions for several years in Auckland NZ. Karen left this work to return to explore a more ‘grass roots’ approach to music. Adventures in South America and Europe throughout 2012 and 2013 offered the chance to explore mask making, dance, street music, while studying Spanish and German language and Celtic fiddle!

Something of a musical chameleon Karen has evolved throughout her nine solo albums to date. While her origins could be described as ‘funky acoustic folk/rock’, her solo albums  Words&Groove (2010) and Rubble (2007) embraced the improvisational language of Jazz.

Karen’s present solo show is called ‘Hunter de Luz’ which is based on live vocal loops and future positive lyrics. This is a World music infusion of Celtic tunes, reggae grooves, funky rhythms and melodies in Spanish, Maori, Sanskrit and English.

Press Quotes

…her delivery is cool and illuminating. That she can switch from a dirty jazz-blues rhythm section arrangement to a simple guitar-picking delivery to spoken word reveals Hunter as a major New Zealand talent. From every turn, Rubble is one rough-cut gem of an album. Waikato Times

…..a cracked jazz balladeer; backed by hipster-jazz and creating a creepy mood for hushed spoken-word pieces and lazy bar-room blues, it is as if Hunter has unlocked her inner Rickie Lee Jones, tending also to touch on the spirit of Tom Waits … Rubble is a class act of an album – do your best to check it out. Dominion Post

Hunter is a “ridiculously accomplished guitar-playing, singing, songwriting Aucklander whose performances are pithy, compassionate and insightfulMetro magazine

Songwriting this good can not be faked. Ripitup