Man, I’m not gonna lie… one of my first musical memories is popping in a Hootie & The Blowfish cassette tape of Cracked Rear View, picking up this toy guitar, and pretending I was a rockstar in my bedroom.
I had to be about five years old, Hootie & the Blowfish was at the top of their game, and MTV and VH1 were still playing music videos… what a time to be alive.
Darius Rucker, the frontman for Hootie, eventually went on to have a successful solo career as a country music artist, however, he’s been quoted saying that “Let Her Cry” was probably the first country song he ever wrote.
Released in December 1994 as the second single from the band’s debut album, Cracked Rear View, the song was a huge hit around the world, going top 5 in countries like Australia, Canada, Iceland, and the United States. The song also won a Grammy for Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group in 1996.
And yeah, it is a pretty damn good country song when you think about it.
But just wait til you hear the bluegrass version…
Back in the early ’90s, when Hootie was topping the charts, the band happened to stop at this little BBQ joint called Hickory Hollow near Houston, Texas, where a bluegrass band was on stage. And for some reason, the band got the sense that Darius and company played in a band, so Tootsie (the lead singer) invited them up on stage.
Having no clue who they were, they handed over their instruments to two guys from one of the biggest bands in the world at the time.
According to the man who captured the video, the entire thing was completely off the cuff:
“1994-95 Hootie & the Blowfish were booked at Fitzgerald’s in Houston. Earlier that evening members were out having a meal and enjoying some live Bluegrass when a lady on stage noticed them and called them out.
She had no idea who they were (almost nobody in the place did) but somehow sensed they were musicians. This was at a time when you could not turn on a radio or walk through a mall without hearing them.
She invited them on stage and this is what happened.”
And speaking of Hootie…
What Every Darius Rucker Concert Must Be Like…
Love me some Key & Peele.
The Comedy Central show starring Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele has featured more than a few sketch comedy classics, but this one has always cracked me up.
Originally released in 2012, right at the peak of his solo stardom, the premise is real simple… is Darius Rucker Hootie, or not?