Long John Hunter
Inducted in 2009
John T. Hunter, Jr. was born in Louisiana in
1931 and grew up in Arkansas and Texas. He had
no interest in being a professional musician
until, at age 22, co-workers at the Beaumont,
Texas box factory where he worked took him to
see B.B. King perform at the Raven Club (he
wasn't going to go when he heard about the $1.50
cover charge, so his friends paid his way).
Hunter was amazed at the reception King got
from the crowd, especially the frenzy of the
women in the audience. The very next day
Hunter went out and bought a guitar. Even
though he had never played before, he was
determined to be like B.B. That very week he
put a band together and before long developed
his own style, a vibrant mix of swinging blues
and razor sharp guitar playing reminiscent of
fellow Texans Albert Collins and Gatemouth
Brown, with a definite nod towards B.B. King.
Less than a year later, Hunter was
headlining at the Raven, the very same place
he first saw B.B. He moved to AZ in 2001 and
played in the valley on and off since his
quintuple bypass surgery in 2004.
Hunter passed away on January 4, 2016.