Jazz Guitarist Dave Stryker Plays Eight Track Hits

Sep 9, 2016

Not everyone who goes to hear guitarist Dave Stryker knows jazz standards so he likes to play familiar pop and r&b songs that people grew up with. Two years ago Stryker released a full album of songs from the late 60s and 70s. That album, Eight Track, was popular with listeners so the guitarist recorded a sequel, Eight Track II. On both albums Stryker puts his own funky jazz spin on songs from the golden age of the 8-track tape like Marvin Gaye's "What's Going On" and Stevie Wonder's "Signed, Sealed, Delivered I'm Yours."

As a teenager growing up in Omaha in the 1970s, Stryker had one of those clunky tape players in his shag-carpeted '69 GMC van. He says those songs take him back to his youthful days and also bring people in when they hear a song they recognize.

Stryker moved from Omaha to New York City in 1980 and began playing four years later with Hammond B-3 organ master Jack McDuff. He's released nearly 30 albums under his own name and a half-dozen more with a band he co-leads with saxophonist Steve Slagle.

Along with being busy touring and recording, Stryker also teaches at Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana and Montclair University in New Jersey. The guitarist joined Jazz Nightly by phone to discuss his latest album.