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- Holly Hofmann Quartet
- Holly Hofmann and Mike Wofford
- Holly Hofmann Quartet with Strings: Tribute to Antonio Carlos Jobim
- Holly Hofmann/Mike Wofford Quintet featuring Terell Stafford
Holly Hofmann Quartet
Holly and pianist Mike Wofford currently perform and tour with a quartet that has included such artists as Ray Brown, Peter Washington, Jeff Hamilton and Victor Lewis. The varied repertoire of original material and inventive arrangements of standards features both flute and alto flute in unexpected ways, from full-on high energy mainstream jazz to balladic and Latin lyricism. As one critic has written, “Hofmann works to give the flute frontline parity with horns….Dizzy said her ideas were like those of a trumpeter.” (Kirk Silsbee, LA City Beat)
Minor Miracle (Capri)
Holly Hofmann possesses one of the most exquisite flute tones in jazz. She also demonstrates a sure technique, inventive ideas, a secure sense of swing and a broad emotional range. Put her with some of the best practitioners of their own instruments—husband Mike Wofford on piano, Peter Washington on bass and Victor Lewis on drums—interpreting together an attractive collection of standards and originals, and the result has to be a winner. And a winner Minor Miracle is, with all hands displaying a consummate professionalism enhanced by that special quality that only players of their caliber can bring to a performance.
Jobim’s lovely “Samba Do Avião,” a flute and piano duet, fittingly displays Hofmann’s beautiful tone and both improvisers’ highly melodic phrasing. Similar examples include Francis Himes’ Brazilian “Minha” and Cole Porter’s “Everything I Love.” On the other end of the emotional spectrum, “CRS-Craft,” a bluesy, 16-bar groover by the late bassist Ray Brown, finds the flutist digging in and swinging hard. Other up-tunes include Matt Dennis’ “Will You Still Be Mine,” Ellington and Strayhorn’s “Tonk” and Strayhorn’s “Johnny Come Lately” (fitted with an Afro-Cuban beat). The jaunty “Minor Miracle,” the couple’s own imaginative stretched blues (à la Bobby Timmons’ “This Here”) resides somewhere in between.
Holly Hofmann and Mike Wofford
Flutist Holly Hofmann and pianist Mike Wofford have a long history of performing together in various performance settings. One of their more recent collaborations is as a duo, which has been recorded on Capri as Live at Athenaeum Jazz, Vol.2.
With its spirit and unusual approaches to the jazz repertoire as well as their own original material, the duo has received acclaim around the country wherever they have appeared. Of their CD, Cadence Magazine wrote, “This is an astounding example of how two instruments can conjure up the richness of a complete orchestra by employing exceptional harmonics, talent and creativity.” (Dee Dee McNeil)
A number of jazz spouses have worked together on record dates over the decades, though it is still a relatively infrequent occurrence. But flutist Holly Hofmann, a perennial critic's favorite, found a true soul mate in pianist Mike Wofford, as they demonstrate throughout this enjoyable duo concert recorded at the Athenaeum Music & Arts Library in southern California. On this occasion, Hofmann makes her recorded debut playing alto flute on three selections, a reflective "More Than You Know," a risk-taking romp through two infrequently performed Thelonious Monk works ("Introspection" and "Eronel"), and a driving take of the standard "If I Should Lose You" that has a humorous air.
Hofmann contributed two originals: "Free Day" is a haunting melody inspired by a fragment from American classical composer Samuel Barber's Adagio for Strings, while "Presentimiento" is a dark, sensuous bossa nova. Wofford wrote the quirky "Floof" for his wife, a demanding chart that is full of sudden twists and turns. Pete Malinverni's "Twelve," full of the playful dissonance and unexpected chords heard in the music of the late Herbie Nichols, is negotiated flawlessly by both Hofmann and Wofford. This intimate concert was recorded acoustically without amplification on the flutes, giving the listener an unforgettable experience similar to those who were able to attend this memorable evening of jazz.
by Ken Dryden
Holly Hofmann Quartet with Strings: Tribute to Antonio Carlos Jobim
Flutist Holly Hofmann and pianist Mike Wofford have now added another configuration to their jazz duo and quartet touring schedule. This chamber jazz project is “A Tribute to Antonio Carlos Jobim,” featuring Holly and Mike with bassist Christoph Luty, drummer Jeff Hamilton and Latin percussionist Luis Conte, with a twelve to sixteen-piece string orchestra. The arrangements have been written for this ensemble by notable composer/arrangers Mike Wofford, Bill Cunliffe and Chris Hughes. Some of Jobim’s most beloved works have been included, like Girl from Ipanema and No More Blues, as well as his lesser known compositions, such as Song of the Jet, Luiza, and Agua de Beber. The combination of Holly’s beautiful tone with jazz rhythm section over the lush orchestral accompaniment is particularly suited to the beauty of Jobim’s compositions. All About Jazz writes, “This project presents Holly and Mike at their lyrical best, filled with vibrant in-the-moment creativity and sensuous Brazilian ambience.”
President and CEO
Capri Records, Ltd.
Holly Hofmann/Mike Wofford Quintet featuring Terell Stafford
In addition to flute and trumpet, Hofmann and Stafford also play alto flute and flugelhorn in this configuration. This is unique jazz quintet instrumentation, but Wofford’s arrangements stay with the rhythmic and harmonic intensity of a traditional tenor/trumpet front-line, adding the beautiful timbres of flute and flugel. Their repertoire features original compositions from Turn Signal, the group’s 2012 Capri Records release, as well as lesser-known standards from Strayhorn, Monk, and Gershwin.
"Turn Signal" is a departure into new territory for Mike Wofford and Holly Hofmann, an excursion off the mainstream and into a world of warm, rich tones and beautiful, harmonic nuances, a journey taken in the company of the always playful Terell Stafford. It's a very rewarding ride.”
T. Michael Crowell
Host of KSDS Jazz 88.3's Offramp