Known for material that is calm, tranquil, dreamy, and gently introspective, Mark Hofgard is an American new age instrumentalist/composer whose primary influences have included George Winston, Liz Story, Paul Winter, and Suzanne Ciani (among others). Hofgard, who plays both acoustic piano and electric keyboards, has incorporated a variety of styles; those who pay close attention to his peaceful and ethereal work will find hints of everything from smooth jazz/NAC music to folk to European classical to Irish-Celtic music. But new age is Hofgard's orientation -- he is a new age artist first and foremost -- and his new age spirituality (which is greatly influenced by his love of nature) is reflected in song titles like "River of Truth," "Uncovering the Star," "Sky Clad in the Sun," and "Shaman's Journey." Hofgard (whose brother is an acoustic guitarist named Kurt Hofgard) grew up in Colorado, where he studied classical piano as a child. Hofgard went on to play in various local rock and jazz bands as a teenager, but instead of studying to be a full-time musician, he obtained a law degree and earned his living as an attorney. Nonetheless, Hofgard (who now lives in the ski resort town of Estes Park, CO in the Rocky Mountains) wrote music on the side, and in 2003 (after about 25 years of practicing law), he finally put out a CD. That year, Hofgard released his debut album, The Opening, on his own label, Naked Expressions Music; in addition to composing all of the material, Hofgard handled most of the producing.
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