“Eric Hofbauer has become a significant force in Boston’s improvised-music scene,” declares Stereophile’s David R. Adler, “His aesthetic evokes old blues, Americana, Tin Pan Alley, bebop, and further frontiers. There’s a rule-breaking spirit but also an impeccable rigor, a foundation of sheer chops and knowledge, that put Hofbauer in the top tier of guitarists.”
Hofbauer has been an integral member of Boston’s jazz scene as a musician, bandleader, organizer and educator for the past fifteen years, where he has performed and recorded alongside such notable collaborators as Han Bennink, Roy Campbell, Jr., John Tchicai, Garrison Fewell, Cecil McBee, Steve Swell and Matt Wilson.
Hofbauer is perhaps best known for his solo guitar work featured in a trilogy of solo guitar recordings (American Vanity, American Fear and American Grace). Of the trilogy, Andrew Gilbert of The Boston Globe writes, “No other guitarist in jazz has developed a solo approach as rigorous, evocative, and thoughtful as Hofbauer”.
Hofbauer has also earned critical acclaim for his work in a variety of musical projects, including recordings with the Garrison Fewell/Eric Hofbauer Duo, Garrison Fewell’s Variable Density Sound Orchestra, The Pablo Ablanedo Octet(o) and The Blueprint Project with Han Bennink. In 2007, he founded his own group, Eric Hofbauer & The Infrared Band, which released its debut Myth Understanding (CNM 011) 2008 and followed up with LEVEL (CNM 020) in 2011. Most recently, he has been performing with BOLT, an electro-acoustic improvising quartet featuring the notable Dutch free jazz saxophonist, Jorrit Dijkstra, and the new Eric Hofbauer Quintet, a modern jazz project featuring Hofbauer compositions.
Hofbauer teaches jazz composition, guitar, and jazz history at Emerson College and the University of Rhode Island. In 2009, he was honored with the Massachusetts Cultural Council Artist Fellowship in Music Composition.