Manifested in a four-decade innovative commitment to music, via exploration of the parameter of pitch, and self-invented instrumental techniques, contributing to the expansion of the vocabulary of the guitar, and to music of our time. Sten Höstfält (Hearst-felt) is a leading innovative guitarist and composer working on the New York music scene of today. He performs with some of the most original, unique voices in modern music, and has been called highly exceptional by legendary icon of American Music Jimmy Giuffre, and virtuosic by musical innovator Joe Maneri (Jon Damian, Fresh Music, 2015). His music has been labeled genuinely innovative, predicted as groundbreaking in the future (Jazz Review, 2005), and among the most riveting explorations of the microtonal world ever recorded (Signal to Noise, 2005).
This year, Hostfalt celebrates two decades of performances/recordings of original microtonal music since the 2002 recording of 29 Pieces for The Microtonal Guitar Live at Knitting Factory New York, an album critically regarded a seminal work for microtonal music in the improvised idiom. Documented by a re-release of 29 Pieces, along with 'Transformations' featuring compositions commissioned for a 2014 solo concert at the XXXV Encontre Internacional Compositors, at Pilar i Joan Miro' Palma de Mallorca. As well as a 2018 duo recording with Italian avant-garde trumpet player Johnny Lapio, and the compilation Microtonal Works Vol.1. All released on Sonus Rex.
Sten Höstfält was introduced on the New York jazz scene through early 1990's Berklee College of Music facilitated apprenticeships in orchestras led by Herb Pomeroy and Phil Wilson. Via Performances and collaborations with mentors Jimmy Giuffre and Paul Bley, the latter of whom initiated Hostfalt's debut recording as a leader. And concerts with masters of Jazz Gary Burton, Peter Erskine, Clare Fischer, Rob McConnell, and Bobby Shew. As well as, as one of the 'brilliant soloists' (David R. Adler, All Music Guide, 1995) in 'one of the better continuing experiments in New York', (Peter Watrous, NY Times, 1995), the first edition of Guillermo Klein's ensemble. In which he appeared with Mark Turner, Chris Cheek, Seamus Blake, Melvin Butler, Aaron Goldberg and Jeff Ballard weekly at the since influential Jazz Club, Smalls, during the inception of the venue, and on Klein's 'frenzied, passionate, interesting and finely executed' (Marcela Breton, Jazz Times 1997) album for Candid records 'El Minotauro'.
Initially self-taught as a musician and composer, Luleå-born, Swedish-American Hostfalt's early musical experiences combined non-formal and formal formats through activity on the 1980's Scandinavian Progressive/New Wave scene, in parallel with classical guitar studies. Hearing finger-style nine-string blues guitar legend Big Joe Williams solo live, and participating in a workshop with Jazz piano master Horace Parlan. As well as work as a street musician in Copenhagen and Paris was followed by a scholarship to Berklee College of Music, and membership in the institutions legendary 'Recording Band' led by Herb Pomeroy.
A former Royal College of Music in Stockholm, City University of New York CUNY at Queensborough Community College* and Columbia University's Teachers College instructor. And lecturer at New World School of The Arts, Miami, FL, Berklee College of Music, New England Conservatory, and Colegio Ward, Buenos Aires Argentina. Mr. Hostfalt is a BCM outstanding musicianship award, NEC honors and TC scholarship recipient with academic degrees in composition (MM), performance (GD, BM) and music education (EdM), from New England Conservatory, Berklee College of Music, and Columbia University respectively. *Disclaimer: Sten Hostfalt's DBA, music production and education business Sonus Rex, and any work or products thereof, such as (Sten's) NYC Guitar Studio, are not affiliated with Queensborough Community College, or the City University of New York CUNY.
Since 2006, Sten Höstfält operates the music production label Sonus Rex, that incorporates his New York City music education studio, one of few facilities anywhere to offer customized systematic studies of microtonality and the parameter of pitch for the unmodified, standard six-string, twelve-fret guitar, as well as other instruments. As a four-decade veteran educator, teaching since 1977, he has coached students enrolled at, as well as had students admitted to leading music colleges worldwide.
For an an extended biography, including selected press quotes, please go here
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