"Austin-based trumpeter, composer and band leader Jeff Lofton is a veritable jazz virtuoso,” writes NPR affiliate KUTX in Austin. “Comparisons are frequently made to Miles Davis - and rightfully so. Lofton's take on standards frequently astounds, and his originals are equally delicious."
“Listen up Miles Davis fans…” from the Austin American-Statesman and“… channels Miles Davis…” from the Daily Texan were some of the early reviews when Lofton arrived in Austin in 2007 from South Carolina. Mostly unknown to the local jazz scene, word-of-mouth drew people to hear his unique sound at small bars in East Austin. Soon his shows were being described as “…crazy good and crazy crowded.” (Austin American-Statesman). His 2009 straight-ahead, bebop album, "Jazz to the People" was named one of the Top 9 Austin Albums of 2009 by the Austin Chronicle and the DJs Top Ten List from NPR affiliate KUT.
Lofton is known for his successful 1950s Miles Davis Tribute which has received accolades such as “as good as the real thing” from the San Antonio Express News and called a “living history lesson” by the Austin American-Statesman. The show has been well-received at Iridium Jazz Club in New York, The Carver Center in San Antonio as part of KRTU Jazz 91.7 FM’s Year of Jazz anniversary series, One World Theater in Austin, the Blanton Museum of Art in Austin in collaboration with their “Birth of the Cool” exhibit, and Scat Jazz Lounge in Fort Worth.
Lofton studied composition at the University of South Carolina. Since moving to Austin he’s been voted Best Jazz Band at the ’10-’11 Austin Music Awards during SXSW; January 15, 2009 was named “Jeff Lofton Day” by the City of Austin; and he was inducted into the Texas Music Museum. TheAustin American-Statesman’s 2010 Out and About 500: Music list noted his “ubiquitous presence and articulate advocacy.”
In the tradition of Miles Davis, following the success of his critically-acclaimed 2009 straight-ahead, bebop album, “Jazz to the People,” Lofton expanded his sound by forming the Jeff Lofton Electric Thang. The group has performed at the San Antontio Arts and Jazz Festival and private events such as Amplify Austin at the Long Center, at the San Antonio Jazz and Arts Festival and in Austin at the Saxon Pub, Antone’s, Strange Brew Lounge Side and Flamingo Cantina.
The Jeff Lofton Trio performed original music in the Austin indie film “A Swingin’ Trio” which premiered at the Austin Film Festival in 2011 and continues to be accepted into film festivals from San Diego to Montreal. Also in 2011, The Jeff Lofton Quartet performed a sold-out tribute to the Bossa Nova king, Jobim, at the Cactus Cafe, along with an Evening of Cole Porter. In 2012 Lofton opened the TEDxAustin conference accompanied by film composer Graham Reynolds.
In September 2013 Lofton is releasing a single, "Compared to What" from his recently completed recording a new album, “Jericho,” which will release early 2014.