Traveling the gamut: Lauren Hoffman ends worldwide search
Singer-songwriter Lauren Hoffman has long been a traveler – with trips to India, a burgeoning fan base in France, a strategic career move to Brooklyn, and now an album recorded in Israel. But all that's changed now that she's had a baby and come home.
"I'm really happy about being a mom and being in Charlottesville and being settled down," Hoffman says. "There's not much that will tempt me away from that."
Hoffman's own lineage involves music, as her father Ross taught Dave Matthews to write songs; and not long after Matthews shot to fame, Hoffman signed with Virgin Records for her 1997 debut Megiddo. While she toured to widespread critical acclaim, she eventually parted ways with the label after clashing with its publicity department. Subsequent work was dark and brooding; eventually she hit the road.
"I was about to turn thirty, I was here in C'ville renting a little place, and I felt that I could just stay here and thirty could turn into forty," says the now 32-year-old musician. "I felt like I had one more adventure in me."
Connections she made while traveling in India in turn led her to Israel, where she struck up a productive collaboration with producer Assaf Ayalon for a new album.
"Interplanetary Traveler was an inner journey of finding a genuine way to communicate my own experience of love, in different forms," Hoffman says. "My daughter was born after I wrote those songs. When I was able to connect with those feelings inside myself, she appeared to be the perfect one for me to bestow it on."
"Making this album satisfied my need to go out and promote myself and try to be successful," she continues. "I feel like I'm ready to be a mom, and I have so much to offer her."
That comes at an expense, of course. "The album seems like a natural evolution of her past albums," says longtime friend and manager Gwenn Barringer. "I think that at some point in the future, she might turn back to writing as an outlet for what will probably be an interesting next few years being a mom and musician."
Despite hope from peers that Hoffman won't be able to stay away from the local music scene for long, the new mother insists, for now, that she's content with her leap into domesticity.
"I don't know if there's more music, albums, touring–- right now, I don't think there is," Hoffman says. "My manager probably wouldn't encourage me to say it, but what you can expect to see next from me is running into me at Whole Foods with my kid. I'm going to be fading out here."
Lauren Hoffman releases Interplanetary Traveler on Tuesday, January 12. No release concert is planned.