By Ted Slowik
Joliet-area musican Alex Hoffer and his band will perform on the Hopstring Fest mainstage from 1:05 to 1:40 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 23, in Joliet’s Silver Cross Field.
Tickets for the 12 and a half hour celebration of live music, food and craft beer are $20/presale, $30 at the door and are available through hopstringfest.com and at Chicago Street Pub, 75 N. Chicago St., Joliet.
For his Hopstring Fest set Hoffer will be joined by band members Tom Maslowski on bass, Doneco Nudi on drums, Giles Corey on guitar and multi-instrumentalist Pat Otto on mandolin and mandola.
Hoffer, 29, was born and raised mostly in Joliet. He started playing guitar when he was “16 or 17,” and has been a full-time musician since 2008. He estimates he’ll perform about 200 shows this year, both solo and with his band.
“I’ve gained more experience performing this year than ever before and doing a lot of things I haven’t done before,” Hoffer says.
He’s also on the verge of releasing his first studio recording, a four-song EP of originals called “Free From Apathy.” The tracks were recorded with band members at Chicago Recording Company this year.
“My writing is changing as I become a better player,” Hoffer says. “The songs have spaces and are structured to allow for different timings and things.”
Hoffer plays acoustic guitar mostly and performs folk/rock music with progressive or “prog rock” overtures. He performs often in the Chicago area but has played throughout the Midwest and across the country. He recently sang the national anthem at a Cubs game.
At Hopstring Fest, Hoffer says fans can expect a great day of live, local, original music presented by organizer and Chicago Street Pub owners Mike “Triz” and Kathy Trizna.
“Hopstring is a gathering of all kinds of people—people who are passionate about craft beer and great music,” he says. “Triz has been the area’s biggest supporter of people doing their own music. People from all over the Midwest know about Chicago Street Pub.”
Hoffer encourages people to visit his website, alexhoffer.com, to listen to and download his original music.
If You Go
What: Hopstring Fest
When: Saturday, Aug. 23, 11 a.m. to 11:30 p.m.
Where: Silver Cross Field, 1 Mayor Art Schultz Drive, Joliet
Who: Local talent and headline bands like Cracker
How much: Tickets are $20 presale/$30 at the door