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#300105 - 08/06/04 01:15 PM Bruce Hornsby: Baldwin or Steinway?
Jeanne W Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/28/04
Posts: 1240
Loc: New England
Re: Steinway / Baldwin.

Is anyone familiar with Bruce Hornsby's music? I have his “Spirit Trail” cd. I think the piano he played on this cd was super for his music. That piano has a punchy, gutsy sounding bass, clear treble, just gutsy all around. He used to play Baldwin pianos and I believe it was a Baldwin he played on that CD. To hear this piano, click on the link below, then scroll down the page and click on Cut #10 "Variations on Swan Song & Song D". Geez, doesn’t that piano sound great for his music?

#10 Variations on Swan Song & Song D
http://www.towerrecords.com/product.aspx?pfid=1463833

Well, Hornsby now has a new song out they're playing on the radio called: "Gonna Take Some Changes" that I just heard recently. The first thing that struck me is, in my opinion, whatever piano he is playing is too sweet sounding for his music. Where's that gutsy sounding piano?

I think I read somewhere recently that he’s now a Steinway artist – does anyone know if the piano he’s now playing is a Steinway? It sounds like a Steinway to me.

Is anyone out there familiar with Hornsby’s music and noticed a difference in the pianos? Unfortunately, I’m unable to include a link so PW members can hear the piano in Hornsby's new song. That song is from a new CD due out 8/17/04 and apparently the websites aren't allowing soundclips yet.

I love Steinways, but this is an example, I think, of how different pianos fit different needs.

Jeanne W
_________________________
Music is about the heart and so should a piano be about the heart. - Pique

1920 Steinway A3
My Piano Delivery Thread:
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#300106 - 08/06/04 02:34 PM Re: Bruce Hornsby: Baldwin or Steinway?
KlavierBauer Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/06/02
Posts: 3773
Loc: Boulder, Colorado
Jeanne:
to be honest, the pianos he records on typically sound pretty bad. They're usually voiced very unnevenly, and sound like they were tuned for a previous recording session rather than for his.
I would love to hear his playing on a well prepped piano, but I have yet to hear it on a recording. As for whose pianos he's playing now, I have no idea.

And please don't take that as a slam on Bruce, I really like his music. I think he's a great songwriter and an interesting composer. I just don't think the pianos he receives to record on are prepped well. Not his fault...
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#300107 - 08/06/04 05:09 PM Re: Bruce Hornsby: Baldwin or Steinway?
Nina Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/13/01
Posts: 6467
Loc: Phoenix, AZ
He is a remarkable pianist, much better than you might think from listening to his records. (Also not intended as a slam \:\) ).

If you get a chance to see him perform, it's worth it, imo.

Nina

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#300108 - 08/06/04 06:34 PM Re: Bruce Hornsby: Baldwin or Steinway?
GJ Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/08/02
Posts: 183
He is now a Steinway artist (I only know because I just checked the Baldwin and Steinway websites). For those who want to hear a good example of his piano talents, pick up "Here Come the Noise Makers," a live 2-cd set from 2000. He has some major chops. And his Baldwin piano is featured prominently in the photos. Oh, well ... no more Baldwin.

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#300109 - 08/06/04 07:41 PM Re: Bruce Hornsby: Baldwin or Steinway?
grant Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 08/06/04
Posts: 3
Loc: chicago
i recently heard him play on Piano Jazz with Marian McPartland... as usual they were both on baldwin pianos...

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#300110 - 08/07/04 11:53 AM Re: Bruce Hornsby: Baldwin or Steinway?
pete Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/28/03
Posts: 796
Loc: port washington, ny, us
He is now a Steinway artist. he was formerly a Baldwin artist. Baldwin took a long time to take him off their web site.
I once had the pleasure of meeting him. He is a terrific guy, completely down to earth. He doesn't act like a stuck up celebrity at all. I have to admit, except for his big hit, and some of the work he did with the former Eagles, I am not all that familiar with his work. Anyone have any album recommendations.

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#300111 - 08/07/04 12:24 PM Re: Bruce Hornsby: Baldwin or Steinway?
KlavierBauer Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/06/02
Posts: 3773
Loc: Boulder, Colorado
I wasn't aware he had done any work with the Eagles. I'm assuming none of it was studio work?
He was a member of the Grateful Dead for a few years though ... that must've been fun.
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#300112 - 08/07/04 02:11 PM Re: Bruce Hornsby: Baldwin or Steinway?
GJ Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/08/02
Posts: 183
Pete,
KB is correct - Hornsby has done a lot w/ Grateful Dead. As for album recommendations. . . I own every Hornsby album - I am an admitted fan. His first three were as "Bruce Hornsby and the Range." Those albums are "The Way It Is," "Scenes From the Southside," and "A Night on the Town." These are all excellent albums with his signature piano-based rock sound and songs that tell stories. Of these three my favorite is "Scenes. . ." for songs like "The Valley Road" and "The Road Not Taken."

After these three albums Hornsby dropped The Range (but still used a lot of the same players for his band). New album was "Harbor Lights" - great album where he started showing a little more soul/funk (e.g. "Rainbow's Cadillac"). Then came "Hot House" and "Spirit Trail" where he continued using a lot more funk/big band brass.

If you want to hear more of his piano chops, get "Here Come the Noise Makers." It's a live album where he does some Gershwin, Bud Powell, Bill Evans, and even Samuel Barber meshed with his music.

The only album I would not recommend is the most recent, "Big Swing Face." It's a bunch of alternative stuff that does nothing for me.

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#300113 - 08/07/04 02:14 PM Re: Bruce Hornsby: Baldwin or Steinway?
Friend of Pianos Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 08/07/04
Posts: 6
Loc: North East
Bruce Hornsby is currently touring with a Steinway model D. (American)

He purchased a new model D several years ago. (while he was on the Baldwin roster) He has a recording studio in his home. Some of his more recent albums have been recorded their using his own Steinway D. His newest album that you heard a song from, is recorded on that piano.

Steinway sent a NY concert technician to his home to work on the piano to get the instrument in good shape for the album.

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#300114 - 08/08/04 06:04 AM Re: Bruce Hornsby: Baldwin or Steinway?
Jeanne W Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/28/04
Posts: 1240
Loc: New England
Jonathan:

On CDs I notice how pianos sound: bright, mellow, robust, rich, thin, brittle, tinny, metallic, etc., but never have I noticed an out of tune or unnevenly voiced piano. Guess I'm deficient in that area? \:D

GJ: I also Hornsby's have "Here Come The Noisemakers". Yes, there's some awesome pianowork on that.

Friend of Pianos: Thanks for confirming it's a Steinway he plays on the new cd.

Jeanne W
_________________________
Music is about the heart and so should a piano be about the heart. - Pique

1920 Steinway A3
My Piano Delivery Thread:
http://www.pianoworld.com/ubb/ubb/ultimatebb.php?/topic/1/8776.html#000000

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