Think "The Way It Is" is all there is to Bruce Hornsby? Boy, have you got some catching up to do. Besides that 1987 chart-topper — which made the Virginia native one of the handful of artists to hit No. 1 with their very first single, and has some pretty tough things to say about social justice for a song you can probably hear within 15 minutes of walking into your neighborhood Kroger — Hornsby is a hit songwriter for hire (Don Henley's "The End of the Innocence," Huey Lewis & the News' "Jacob's Ladder"). He also was a full-fledged member of the Grateful Dead from 1990 to 1992, a stint that serves Hornsby well in his latest band The Noisemakers, which was formed in 2000 and draws as much on his jazz and bluegrass virtuosity as his pop craft. He's even been known to break into Bach's Goldberg Variations on occasion — this guy can play him some keyboards, all right.
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