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|Origin||Houston, Texas, United States|
|Instruments||Vocals, guitar, synthesizer, violin, bass guitar|
|Labels||Gnomonsong, Ribbon Music|
|Associated acts||Lower Dens|
Jana Hunter is a Baltimore-based songwriter and musician. Hunter was born in Texas.
Recording and band membership
Hunter was signed to Gnomonsong, a record label run by Devendra Banhart and Vetiver's Andy Cabic. Hunter's solo debut album Blank Unstaring Heirs of Doom was the label's debut release. In 2007 Hunter founded an independent record label based in Houston, Texas, Feow! Records, with musicians Matthew Brownlie of Bring Back the Guns and Arthur Bates of Houston band Wicked Poseur.
Hunter is currently the singer and primary songwriter for Lower Dens. After releasing their debut, Twin-Hand Movement, on Gnomonsong in 2010, Lower Dens were one of the first bands signed to the Ribbon Music label and released their second album, Nootropics, on Ribbon in 2012.
Hunter has performed and/or recorded as a member of Jracula, Castanets, Matty & Mossy, Ejaculette, Unitus, and Krazy Nerds, and played in/recorded for Sharon Van Etten, Trentemøller, Food Pyramid, Airwaves, Indian Jewelry, Matteah Baim, Metallic Falcons, Phosphorescent, and CocoRosie.
Hunter has toured with Tara Jane O'Neil, Devendra Banhart, Rasputina, Viking Moses, Castanets, Deer Tick, Marissa Nadler, Peter & the Wolf, Cass McCombs, and Woozyhelmet, among others. In 2005, Hunter accompanied Meadows, Lights, and Mouth of Leaves on their Summer of Golden Blood tour throughout the South. In 2006, Hunter performed at North East Sticks Together.
In 2019, Hunter created a special playlist for Billboards Summer of Pride event. The playlist, which can be found on Spotify, includes songs by various artists, including The Smiths and Stevie Wonder. Hunter said in the corresponding interview that these songs had both helped and inspired them whilst growing up.
“I was wild and in a lot of pain as a kid; home life was very bleak," Hunter told Nick Williams, the article writer. "Pop songs were a guaranteed escape to a mental space where beauty, wonder, and love were possible." They continued on to tell of the inspiration they received, saying that they "wanted to write songs that might have the potential to do that."
Matty and Mossy
Hunter founded and played in the Houston band Matty & Mossy with Heath Flagtvedt, Matt Frey and John Hunter. Their album, Fraimers Haimey, was recorded in Athens, Georgia with Chris Bishop and released on Fleece Records. The album reached #1 on the radio charts of Rice Radio and KSPC, and songs from the album were used in the soundtrack of Andrew Bujalski's films Funny Ha Ha and Mutual Appreciation.
In 2015, Hunter came out as gender fluid (or non-binary), as well being neither gay nor straight, stating that they "feel extremely fortunate in that I truly don’t give a fuck when it comes to the gender of the person I’m dating".
In August 2019, an article by Billboard.com stated that Hunter preferred he/him pronouns. In an interview for the same magazine a month later, Hunter discussed having had testosterone therapy and "top surgery".
- Escape from Evil (with Lower Dens) (Ribbon Music) March 31, 2015
- Nootropics (with Lower Dens) (Ribbon Music) May 1, 2012
- Twin-Hand Movement (with Lower Dens) (Gnomonsong) July 20, 2010
- Carrion EP CD (Gnomonsong) September 18, 2007
- Carrion EP LP (Woodsist) September 2007
- There's No Home CD/LP (Gnomonsong) April 7, 2007
- Blank Unstaring Heirs of Doom CD (Gnomonsong) October 4, 2005
- Jana Hunter / Devendra Banhart LP (split with Devendra Banhart) (Troubleman Unlimited) 2005
- JH CD-R (self-released) 2004
- JH CD-R (self-released) 2003
- The Enlightened Family CD (Voodoo-EROS), 2005
- The Black and White Skins CD (Les Disques du Crépuscule), 2005
- The Golden Apples of the Sun CD (Bastet), 2004
- Jana Hunter: 'Feow!'
- Hockley-Smith, Sam (February 1, 2012). "Lower dens: building a better world". The Fader. Archived from the original on June 10, 2014.
- Breihan, Tom (May 14, 2010). "New Release: Lower Dens: Twin-Hand Movement". Pitchfork.
- Patel, Puja (May 1, 2012). "Lower Dens, 'Nootropics' (Ribbon Music)". Spin.
- Appel, JM. Fallout. Afterword, 2010
- "Listen to Trans Singer-Songwriter Jana Hunter of Lower Dens' Summer of Pride Mix: 'There Is a Place Here, Even For You'". Billboard.
- "ON PRIDE (and gender)".
- "What It's Like to be a Female Musician when You Don't Identify as a Woman". April 10, 2015.
- Grimm, Beca (March 31, 2015). "Lower Dens' Jana Hunter Makes an Escape Worth Celebrating". The Village Voice.
- Norris, John (September 5, 2019). "Why Lower Dens' Jana Hunter Is Both 'Terrified' and 'More Comfortable' Since Transitioning". Billboard.