BRUCE HORNSBY DEBUTS “ANYTHING CAN HAPPEN” FEATURING LEON RUSSELL
August 12, 2020
NEW ALBUM NON-SECURE CONNECTION OUT THIS FRIDAY
FURTHER COLLABORATORS INCLUDE
JAMES MERCER, JAMILA WOODS, VERNON REID,
ROB MOOSE & HIDEAKI AOMORI OF YMUSIC,
JUSTIN VERNON AND MORE
August 12, 2020—“Anything Can Happen,” the new song from award-winning pianist, singer and songwriter Bruce Hornsby debuts today; listen/share here. The track was co-written with Leon Russell who appears on the song thanks to a demo that he and Hornsby recorded together more than 25 years ago. “I was able to get Leon Russell a record deal with Virgin in 1990, and we made a record called ‘Anything Can Happen.’ I always felt that the title song wasn’t produced as well as it could have been (I’ll take the blame), and always wanted to re-cut it. Leon asked me to ‘write me a Barry White track,’ which is how the song started. His vocal from the original demo ghosts mine for a lot of the song, and then he emerges at the end to join me in harmony. My time with Leon was extremely memorable and deserves its own article; too much amazing and funny, classic stuff,” Hornsby notes. “Anything Can Happen” appears on the highly anticipated album, Non-Secure Connection, out this Friday, August 14 and is available for purchase at https://orcd.co/nonsecureconnection.
Most recently, Hornsby released “Bright Star Cast,” which was inspired by The New York Times Magazine’s “1619 Project,” James Weldon Johnson’s “Lift Ev’ry Voice and Sing” and the work of historian Taylor Branch. Featuring vocals from Chicago-based Jamila Woods and guitar from Vernon Reid (Living Colour), the song received critical praise—Stereogum proclaimed, “‘Bright Star Cast’ is a smooth, funky, percussive song that brings a utopian message and gives all its musicians chances to put in serious work,” while Consequence of Sound furthered, “‘Bright Star Cast’ is a rollicking funk-rock number that’s indebted to the work of George Clinton.” In June, Hornsby released the album’s lead single “My Resolve” featuring James Mercer (The Shins, Broken Bells).
Hornsby’s music changed when he started having the genesis of his songs be from film music. Through composing for writer and director Spike Lee, Hornsby would often feel that the certain atmospheric quality of a “cue” he’d written should be developed into a song. About this unique approach, Hornsby notes, “It takes my music to a place that I like that sets it apart from other things I’ve done. I’m often looking to make a sound that I haven’t heard before and find a place in what I guess is the context of popular song for some new information.” Hornsby’s continued growth as a musician enables him to build upon and explore new musical techniques. On Non-Secure Connection, he’s created something different that touches on a broad range of themes, from civil rights to computer hackers, mall salesmen and the Darwinian aspects of AAU basketball.
“The new album’s chromaticism and dissonance quotient is exactly twice as high (three songs featuring that language compared to one and a half on the last record),” says Hornsby of Non-Secure Connection. “I feel like my music has never been a part of any trend that defined any era of music during my 34 years of doing this. I may be wrong, but that’s how it feels to me.”
Predominantly produced by Hornsby, the 10-track album includes added production from Justin Vernon (Bon Iver), Brad Cook (Sharon Van Etten, Hiss Golden Messenger), Wayne Pooley (Bon Iver, Jack DeJohnette) and Tony Berg (Phoebe Bridgers, Andrew Bird, Aimee Mann), who Hornsby credits as the album’s “aesthetician and ombudsman.” Non-Secure Connection also includes musical contributions from Mercer, Woods, Reid, Vernon, Russell, Rob Moose and Hideaki Aomori of yMusic, The Orchestra of St. Hanks (Frost School/Univ. of Miami), Hornsby’s longtime band The Noisemakers and more. The tracks “Non-Secure Connection” and “Porn Hour” were co-written with Chip DeMatteo.
Based out of Williamsburg, VA, Hornsby first rose to national prominence with The Way It Is, his 1986 Grammy-winning debut album with The Range. The title track became the most-played song on American radio in 1987 while Tupac Shakur’s timeless song “Changes” builds on “The Way It Is” and set the stage for many subsequent versions of the track, including Polo G’s current single “Wishing For A Hero.” In 1991, Hornsby collaborated with Bonnie Raitt, playing on her iconic hit “I Can’t Make You Love Me.” Additionally, Hornsby was a part-time member of the Grateful Dead from September 1990 to March 1992, performing over 100 concerts in America and Europe. He has written six full film scores for Spike Lee including his recent Netflix series She’s Gotta Have It, and contributed music to four others, including 2018’s BlacKkKlansman. Last year, Hornsby released his acclaimed album, Absolute Zero, which featured collaborations with Vernon, yMusic, The Staves, Blake Mills, Jack DeJohnette, Sean Carey and more.
The 13-time Grammy nominee has solidified his status as a highly sought-after collaborator. Hornsby’s own 21 albums have sold over 11 million copies worldwide, and he has appeared on over 100 records including releases with Bob Dylan, Don Henley, the Grateful Dead, Ricky Skaggs, Bob Seger, Chaka Khan, Brandon Flowers, Bonnie Raitt, Sting, Mavis Staples, Willie Nelson and more.
NON-SECURE CONNECTION TRACKLIST
- Cleopatra Drones
- Time, The Thief
- Non-Secure Connection
- The Rat King (featuring Rob Moose)
- My Resolve (featuring James Mercer)
- Bright Star Cast (featuring Jamila Woods and Vernon Reid)
- Shit’s Crazy Out Here
- Anything Can Happen (featuring Leon Russell)
- Porn Hour
- No Limits
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