“It’s guitarists like Eric Hofbauer that can make life so very interesting,” declares PopMatters.com’s John Garratt. Critics have called his music “intriguingly original” (Bill Milkowski, JazzTimes), “unique and distinct” (Tom Greenland, AllAboutJazz-New York), “both mischievous and playful” (Edwin Pouncey, Jazzwise) and “as unassumingly compelling as anything out there” (Nic Jones, AllAboutJazz.com).
“No other guitarist in jazz has developed a solo approach as rigorous, evocative, and thoughtful as Hofbauer,” writes Andrew Gilbert of The Boston Globe. In his review of American Fear, AllAboutJazz-New York’s Tom Greenland adds, “For all its variety, drawing on recognizable elements of jazz and other musical traditions, Hofbauer’s voice emerges here unique and distinct, blending the comedic with the tragic—and having some serious fun.”
Known as “a crucial instigator in Boston’s DIY avant-jazz scene” (Jon Garelick, Boston Phoenix), Hofbauer has been an integral member of Boston’s jazz scene as a musician, bandleader, organizer and educator for the past fifteen years. Hofbauer 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 has 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 Quartet, 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.