guitarist, composer, educator
LATEST NEWS and UPDATES ON 2020/21 RELEASES
NEW ALBUM! - Period Pieces by Hofbauer, Jack, Leva & Sabatini slated for Oct. 22 release.
Book of Fire and Two Hours Early, Ten Minutes Late: Duo Music of Ken Aldcroft reviewed
Period Pieces is a new album slated for an Oct. 22 release on CNM. It is a collective project featuring myself on guitar and electronics, Dylan Jack on drums, Tony Leva on acoustic & electric bass, and electronics, and Jerry Sabatini on trumpet. The eight new compositions were created by a combination of parameter based improvisations, texture looping and collage editing. The result is something both completely of the moment but also structured by theme and narrative; steeped in dialogue and layering of time and groove. We are excited to share this new project this year! More news as the release date approaches.
The Book of Fire, a 5-part suite for guitar, bass, turntables and samples, inspired by the writings and speeches of James Baldwin, was released on Jan 31, 2020. The Book of Fire project features Tony Leva on bass and turntables and myself on guitar and MPC1000. We had our world premiere and album release show on Feb.13 on the DOT Jazz Series in Dorchester. An extensive review was published in Burning Ambulance in Feb. by Todd Manning who writes
"The virtuosity displayed by Eric Hofbauer is staggering at times, but his acumen as a composer is even more impressive. Despite the varied influences and elements at play, Book of Fire is both remarkably coherent yet sonically unpredictable. There’s a sense that if the attention wanders, important moments will be missed. There is also a sense that despite the flurry of musical activity on the surface, a great gravity underpins the work, like a star holding everything in orbit."
Two Hours Early, Ten Minutes Late: Duo Music of Ken Aldcroft out June 3, 2020. This collaboration with tenor saxophonist and composer Jason Robinson began with a tour in Canada in 2018 to celebrate the life and music of friend, collaborator and fellow guitarist, Ken Aldcroft. Ken wrote all these pieces for guitar and sax duo (a unique and under-explored duo setting in jazz) that range from blues tinged grooves, to modern classical, to post-bop swinging to free explorations - sometimes in the same piece! This collection of repertoire has a deep personal story for both Jason and I and we are proud to honor Ken and his work with this unique collection! In a recent review in Gapplegate Music Review, Grego Edwards writes
"A beautiful thing is the way it ever straddles from the compositional to the improvisational...In the process we are reminded just how soulfully proficient and resourceful both players are and how they get on famously together as a duo. There is almost nothing that sounds tentative or preparatory. It is all happily significant and artful. It is a program that sounds wonderful the more you listen. It marks off Aldcroft, Robinson and Hofbauer as innovators, artists of the highest caliber. Most highly recommended."
Book of Water Video Album!
I am happy to announce "Book of Water", my 5 part suite for jazz sextet, was released on June 14, 2019. The piece was written for the Five Agents (Jerry Sabatini, tpt, Seth Meicht, tenor, Jeb Bishop, tbn, Nate McBride, bass, Curt Newton, drums, myself on guitar.) Inspired by the pressing issue of climate change this album, recorded live in front of a studio audience, also comes with a "video album" of the concert recording when you purchase it from BandCamp!
Some great press has come out about the album, here are a few highlights and links to full articles:
"...it’s the overall rigor of the guitarist’s vision that makes The Book of Water an elemental success." - J. D. Considine, JazzTimes
"This is a thrilling ride that rolls, swirls and crashes like an elemental force. The horn players are exuberant, the rhythm section is buoyant and Hofbauer, whether carving out single notes like Derek Bailey or tossing off busy runs like Joe Morris, threads the music together. There is delicacy and power in equal measure on this excellent release, one of the best of the year so far." - Jerome Wilson, ALL ABOUT JAZZ
"Hofbauer brings his intuitive improvisatory flair to five tracks, trickling, rushing, presenting a narrative that questions, searches, and alights on the time honed belief that together we persevere. "
"...sounding like late period Mingus, giving a mix of blues and lots of freedom. The themes range from a kinetic “Water Understands Civilization Well"... to “Well Used, Adorning Joy”... featuring sway and swing from the horns and the leader’s tensile guitar tones"
"Hofbauer reveals himself as a creative composer capable of integrating exacting composition and tactical flexibility with dogged determination." - Filipe Freitas, JAZZ TRAIL