With the rich, bluesy vocals of Darius Rucker and gleeful harmonies of guitarist Mark Bryan, bassist Dean Felber and drummer Jim “Soni” Sonefeld, Hootie & the Blowfish have sold over 25 million records worldwide to date after their infectious melodies hit the airwaves in 1994 with hits such as “Hold My Hand”, “Let Her Cry” and “Only Wanna Be With You.”
The quartet met at the University of South Carolina where endless gigs at frat houses and local bars built a major local buzz. Their blend of pop, folk, blues, soul and rock made them hard to pigeonhole, but easily accessible to anyone who loved good music.
Atlantic Records, impressed by their regional draw, signed them and released Cracked Rear View in 1994. The album had been out for six months before the band played on the Late Show with David Letterman which sent sales skyrocketing, eventually landing at No. 1 on the Billboard chart the following spring. Cracked Rear View and the band went on to win two GRAMMY Awards, an MTV Video Music Award, a Billboard Music Award, and multiple People’s Choice Awards. Cracked Rear View went on to earn the band Billboard’s Band of the Year Award in 1996 and the RIAA’s Diamond Award for sales in excess of 10 million units. Cracked Rear View remains the 5th most certified studio album in music business history.
The band remained a top draw nationwide and released five more albums for Atlantic: Fairweather Johnson, Musical Chairs, Scattered, Smothered & Covered, Hootie & The Blowfish and The Best of Hootie & The Blowfish, as well as Looking For Lucky on their own Sneaky Long Records and LIVE in Charleston, The Homegrown Concert Event DVD and CD. The band took a break from full-time touring in 2007, reuniting annually for a variety of philanthropic events while also pursuing solo projects. 2019 will mark the band’s first full-time touring year in over a decade as they embark on the Group Therapy Tour in support of their forthcoming new album ‘Imperfect Circle’ under a new record deal with Universal Music Group.
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Check out our favourite Hootie & The Blowfish songs on our Spotify playlist