Amos Hoffman

 

Amos Hoffman

Tel Aviv based guitarist and oudist Amos Hoffman started playing guitar at the age of 6, and oud a few years later. He studied guitar privately, and later attended the prestigious Rubin Academy of Music in Jerusalem. His search for new musical experiences led him first to Amsterdam, and then to New York City, where he played jazz with both established musicians like Dennis Charles, Evelyn Blakey and Juma Santos and up and coming talents like Jason Lindler, Omer Avital, Sam Newsome, Jay Collins, bassist Avishai Cohen, and Duane Eubanks. He also began a more formal study of Middle Eastern music with Lebanese oud and ney player, Basam Saba.

In 1998, he recorded his first solo album, The Dreamer for the Spanish Label, Fresh Sound/New Talent. He has also contributed to numerous other projects, including Ben Wolfe's 13 Sketches 1997, Jay Collins' Cross Culture 1999, Sam Newsome 1999 and bassist Avishai Cohen's Aurora 2009, Sensitive Hours 2008, Continuo 2006, Colors 2000 Devotion 1999 and Adama 1998.

After returning to Israel at the end of 1999, he began to compose the music that would eventually become the tracks on Na'ama, released in 2006 (Magda). On Na’ama, Hoffman plays homage to the traditions of classical Arabic music - the taqasim (improvisation) and the maqam (scales). All 12 tracks are original compositions, inspired by the great Arab composers of the 20th Century.

Further pursuing his passion for combining jazz with Middle Eastern music, his third release, Evolution (RazDaz 2008), is a ten track exploration of melodies and rhythms that incorporates compositional and improvisational elements common to both musical genres. His long-time friend and musical associate Avishai Cohen, who plays contrabass, piano and contributes vocals, joins him on Evolution.

Hoffman’s latest release, Carving (RazDaz 2010) takes another step westward, featuring guitar on half of the tracks, and strengthening the rhythm section by adding a drummer to the lineup. Amos is currently touring and promoting Carving.