Last Updated: February 27, 2024
Richest CelebritiesSingers
Net Worth:
$20 Million
Nov 23, 1954 (69 years old)
6 ft 3 in (1.93 m)
Songwriter, Singer, Musician, Pianist, Film Score Composer, Multi-instrumentalist, Keyboard Player
United States of America
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What is Bruce Hornsby's Net Worth?

Bruce Hornsby is an American singer and keyboardist who has a net worth of $20 million. That number includes the value of Bruce's very-well-sampled catalog of music. Bruce Hornsby's music combines folk, jazz, bluegrass, rock, and country, among other musical traditions. He has performed with his touring bands the Range and the Noisemakers as well as his bluegrass project with Ricky Skaggs, and also played on tour with the Grateful Dead from 1988 to 1995. Hornsby has released over 20 albums since 1986.

He formed Bruce Hornsby and the Range in 1984. The band released four albums including their 3x Platinum debut album, "The Way it Is," which reached #3 in the US. Hornsby has released six solo albums and five with The Noise Makers. He released one album with Ricky Skaggs and another with The Bruce Hornsby Trio. He won a Grammy Award for Best New Artist in 1987. Hornsby also won Grammy Awards in 1990 for Best Bluegrass Album and in 1994 for Best Pop Instrumental Performance. In 2015 he reunited with the Grateful Dead for their Fare Thee Well reunion shows.

Early Life and Education

Bruce Hornsby was born on November 23, 1954 in Williamsburg, Virginia to Lois, a pianist, and Robert, an attorney and real estate developer. He has two brothers named Bobby and John. Growing up, Hornsby was raised in the church of Christian Science. As a teenager, he went to James Blair High School, from which he graduated in 1973. Hornsby went on to attend the University of Richmond for a year, and then the Berklee College of Music. He finally ended up at the University of Miami, graduating in 1977. Actor David Hornsby is Bruce's cousin.

Career Beginnings

While still in college, Hornsby joined his brother Bobby in the local cover band Bobby Hi-Test and the Octane Kids. Later, after graduating from college, Hornsby returned to Williamsburg and performed at clubs and hotel bars. In 1980, he moved with his brother and songwriting partner John to Los Angeles, where they worked for 20th Century Fox; he also worked as a session musician. Following this, Hornsby joined the rock band Ambrosia on their final album, "Road Island." After the group disbanded, he and Ambrosia bassist Joe Puerta joined singer Sheena Easton's touring band.

Bruce Hornsby Net Worth

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Bruce Hornsby and the Range

Hornsby formed his first group, Bruce Hornsby and the Range, in 1984. Signed to RCA Records the next year, the band included members David Mansfield, Joe Puerta, John Molo, and George Marinelli. Hornsby went on to launch his recording career in 1986 with what would remain the biggest hit of his career: the number-one song "The Way It Is," released as the second single from Hornsby's debut album of the same name. Also launching the hit singles "Mandolin Rain" and "Every Little Kiss," the album won Hornsby the Grammy Award for Best New Artist. The second album by Hornsby and the Range, "Scenes from the Southside," came out in 1988. It spawned the hit single "The Valley Road," which won the Grammy for Best Bluegrass Recording. Hornsby and the Range released their third and final album, "A Night on the Town," in 1990. Notably, the album featured Hornsby's last significant hit single, "Across the River."

Bruce Hornsby in 1987. (Photo by Paul Natkin/Getty Images)

Tupac "Changes" Sample

Many artists, especially rappers, have sampled "The Way it Is." Samplers include Wyclef, E-40, Snoop, and most famously, Tupac.

The Tupac song "Changes" features a prominent sample of Bruce Hornsby's song "The Way it Is." The song, which was released posthumously in 1998 on Tupac's Greatest Hits album, would go on to become one of Tupac's most popular hits. Bruce never met Tupac and did not know about the song until the Shakur Foundation sent him a cassette tape just prior to the album's release which a note that said: "We found this song, it's going to be the single on his Greatest Hits album coming out."

In a 2011 interview with LA Weekly, Bruce was asked if he made more money from his original "The Way it Is" or Tupac's "Changes". His answer:

"Probably the original itself. If you want to get into it…there's not much of an appetite in rap and R&B for oldies radio, even though it's pervasive as hell in rock. So I think my version just continues, it's a 'recurrent.' There's no real outlet for rap oldies."

Keep in mind, the above interview was done before Spotify and other streaming services came around and supercharged royalties. Would be interesting to know if Bruce's opinion above has changed in recent years.

Solo Career

In 1993, Hornsby released his debut album as a solo artist, "Harbor Lights." It featured contributions from such major names as Branford Marsalis, Bonnie Raitt, Jerry Garcia, and Phil Collins.

Next, Hornsby released "Hot House," which spawned the single "Walk in the Sun." He followed this with the 1998 double album "Spirit Trail." During his time of releasing solo albums, Hornsby did a number of mini tours playing piano. In 2014, he released the live album "Solo Concerts."

Bruce Hornsby and the Noisemakers

Hornsby's touring band underwent significant changes in the late 90s, resulting in a new band called the Noisemakers. The lineup featured Bobby Read, J.T. Thomas, J.V. Collier, Doug Derryberry, and various different drummers before Sonny Emory became full-time in that position. Hornsby and the Noisemakers went on to release their first studio album, "Big Swing Face," in 2002. This was Hornsby's most experimental album yet, and the only one on which he barely played the piano. He returned to a more familiar sound with 2004's "Halcyon Days," his first album for Columbia Records. Hornsby went on to release "Levitate" and "Rehab Reunion," as well as the live album "Bride of the Noisemakers."

Grateful Dead

Hornsby joined the rock band the Grateful Dead in 1988 for a stage performance, and soon became a recurring guest on tour with the band. He became a regular player in the touring lineup a couple years later, remaining with the band until the death of Jerry Garcia in 1995. Hornsby later played with the Other Ones, formed in 1998 by Grateful Dead members Phil Lesh, Bob Weir, and Mickey Hart.

Collaborations with Ricky Skaggs

Another of Hornsby's most fruitful collaborations has been with bluegrass musician Ricky Skaggs. In 2007, the pair released the album "Ricky Skaggs & Bruce Hornsby," which they followed with a tour. The album reached number one on the Billboard Bluegrass Albums chart. Hornsby and Skaggs later released a live album in 2013 entitled "Cluck Ol' Hen."

Other Collaborations

Hornsby has collaborated with a surfeit of other artists over the years on a variety of media projects. In 1994, he produced Leon Russell's comeback album "Anything Can Happen." Meanwhile, he has appeared on albums by such artists as Stevie Nicks, Bob Dylan, Robbie Robertson, and Squeeze. A particularly longstanding collaboration has been with filmmaker Spike Lee, for whom Hornsby has composed numerous songs and scores. He also wrote music for the Broadway musical "SCKBSTD" in 2011.

Personal Life

With his wife Kathy, Hornsby has twin sons named Russell and Keith, former college athletes in track and basketball, respectively. Hornsby himself is an avid basketball player and fan, and can often be spotted at college games in Virginia.

Real Estate

For the last several decades, Bruce Hornsby and his wife have lived in a massive mansion in Williamsburg, Virginia. The property has a 7,000 square-foot primary mansion and several additional structures. The property spans 32 gorgeous wooded acres.

All net worths are calculated using data drawn from public sources. When provided, we also incorporate private tips and feedback received from the celebrities or their representatives. While we work diligently to ensure that our numbers are as accurate as possible, unless otherwise indicated they are only estimates. We welcome all corrections and feedback using the button below.
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