Bruce Hornsby is like one of those kids you loved to hate back in high school. Good grades aren't enough -- they have to take on every challenge the teacher offers. In Hornsby's case, he comes across as a perennial multi-tasker: An artist who's never been content with hit singles, even though he achieved several early on. He is prone instead to bend the boundaries and tackle seemingly any project that comes his way, even when it captures his fans unawares. Once a pop pundit, he's sped his way forward into rock, jazz, classical, and even avant-garde sounds.
Indeed, Hornsby's come an extraordinarily long way since he and his former band the Range garnered their Grammy for Best New Artist in 1987, and stormed the pop charts with the massive hits "The Way It Is" and "Mandolin Rain." Hornsby himself went on to win two more Grammys, one for Best Bluegrass Recording in 1990 and the other for Best Pop Instrumental three years later. Still, there's no better example of his dexterity than the list of outstanding artists that he's aligned himself with over the years, among them, the Grateful Dead, Eric Clapton, Sting, and Ricky Skaggs. Indeed, it's his partnership with Skaggs that forms the basis of his latest effort, Cluck Ol' Men, a live follow-up to the duo's eponymous 2007 debut.
However, if we were to wind back the clock, back some 36 years, we'd have reason to claim Hornsby as a hometown boy, courtesy of the fact that he's a distinguished graduate of the University of Miami, class of '77. And hey, what do you do when you catch up with one of your former alum? You catch up of course! So naturally, that's what we did.More »