Gerhilde Benker


Oral History Information

Interview Date
Job Title
Former President
Company Name
Hofner String Instruments

Gerhilde Benker served as president of Hofner Music, a firm founded by her grandfather Karl Hofner in 1864 in Eger, Germany. Her father, Walter, was the inventor of the Hofner bass, which has been known as the Beatle Bass ever since young Paul McCartney began playing the instrument. The endorsement of the electric bass by the top band in the world created a craze and demand for the bass that was unparalleled. While Paul was still playing the Hofner bass in the early 2000s, Gerhilde noted that she has yet to meet the former Beatle in person. The company has also introduced several other innovative products such as their hollow body guitars and unique pick-ups.