HOT COUNTRY KNIGHTS

Bio

Some said this moment would never happen. But in spite of 30 wasted years
and countless bad decisions, the ’90s influenced country band Hot Country Knights has
come riding in to save Country music from itself, after signing a worldwide recording deal
with Universal Music Group Nashville (UMGN). The Knights promise to bring real ’90s
Country music back to a format that’s been drowning in male sensitivity, cashmere
cardigan sweaters.

Famous for never giving up on the dream of the ‘90s, the Knights spent the last few
decades watching as country morphed from a proudly vigorous genre into something
almost unrecognizable. But lead singer Douglas (“Doug”) Douglason, lead bass player
Trevor Travis, lead guitarist Marty Ray (“Rayro”) Roburn, keytar/fiddle player Terotej
(“Terry”) Dvoraczekynski, steel guitarist Barry Van Ricky and percussionist Monte
Montgomery have the antidote as The K Is Silent puts the “T” back in country.

“Some artists out there tried to put the ‘O’ back in country, that was a thing for a while….
but what it’s really missing is the ‘T,’” band leader Douglas (“Doug”) Douglason said.
“Country music has Low-T right now…it could use a pick me up, if you know what I mean.
Those record label people over at Universal finally realized that only the Knights could be
up to a task this big and hard.”

With a forthcoming project built on the bounding rhythms and bright, organic euphoria of
live Country music – with truly gratifying lyrics. The Knights are adamant about the fact
they could have done it themselves. Instead, they allowed longtime admirer Dierks
Bentley to produce – a partnership born from a deep sense of man-to-man pity.

“Boy he sucks, basically,” says lead guitarist Rayro. “I didn’t want to have to be the one
to say it, but we’re helping him out, let’s just be clear there.”

“When [Dierks] first moved to town he was struggling, and he saw us crushing a big
venue,” Douglason adds, although he can’t recall which Hooters’ parking lot it was. “We
inspired him, so he thinks he’s paying us back in some way by offering to produce us –
but we all know what’s really going on here. He’s trying to grab onto the old mullet and
ride it as hard as he can.”

Despite Bentley’s involvement, the Knights emerged with a collection they predict will
have fans lined up around their local Tower Records and Sam Goody locations, with the
first single “Pick Her Up” featuring Travis Tritt to get the action started.

A classic barnstormer featuring rollicking guitar solos and a freewheeling guest
appearance by ‘90s icon Travis Tritt, it’s a sound the band has dubbed “Hot Country
Knights 101.” “We wanted to introduce our fans to what actual, real country music is,”
Douglason explains. “None of that snap-track shit that’s out there now. So this is just
straight ahead, balls-to-the-wall slapping out that tempo.”

Other unforgettable moments include the modern-day drifter’s lament, “Asphalt,” a
touching ballad about the band’s curve-hugging motivation. As dedicated road warriors,
they’ve basically lived out of a van their entire existence – even when they weren’t
touring.

“The road calls and you answer,” says the Russian born Terry. “You go town to town, you
meet pretty lady, share boiled-rabbit soup, glass of wine, and then you must move on to
next town. It’s just the way it is.”

“It’s really well rounded,” Douglason says of the track’s ample emotional cushion. “It’s a
tender song, and my mom loves it.”

“We’re just keeping it ‘90s, the way it’s supposed to be,” says Travis, the band’s lead bass
player and sometimes co-lead singer.

After all this time, some may ask “Why now?” It comes down to something much more …
substance. According to the band, they couldn’t just sit back and watch Country let its
proud heritage droop and sag.

“See, we were out on the road singing a lot of other people’s hits, and we called
them Greatest Hits because by us singing them, it made them great,” Douglason
explains. “But this is a step beyond our Greatest Hits. This is all original material, and it’s
the best stuff to come out of Nashville since like, 1999. I’m excited for the fans to hear it.”
“And I’m excited for them to buy it,” Rayro adds.

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FATHER’S DAY LINERS 2024

Audio / LINER Alan Jackson (Father’s Day)

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“Hey, I’m Alan Jackson, wishing you a Happy Father’s Day.”

 

Audio / LINER Billy Currington (Father’s Day)

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“Hey everybody! I’m Billy Currington, wishing you a very Happy Father’s Day!”

Audio / LINER Brad Paisley (Father’s Day)

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Hi! This is Brad Paisley, wishing all the dads out there a Happy Father’s Day.”

Audio / LINER Brothers Osborne (Father’s Day)

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“Hey! This is TJ, and I’m John, and we are Brothers Osborne, wishing all you fathers out there a very Happy Father’s Day.”

Audio / LINER Bryce Leatherwood (Father’s Day)

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“Hey everybody, this is Bryce Leatherwood. This is to all the Dads out there, I’m wishing you a Happy Father’s Day. Thank y’all for what y’all do, and God bless.”

Audio / LINER Carrie Underwood (Father’s Day)

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“Hey, I’m Carrie Underwood, wishing you a very Happy Father’s Day.”

Audio / LINER Catie Offerman (Father’s Day)

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“Hey everybody! This is Catie Offerman. For all you fathers out there, Happy Father’s Day.”

Audio / LINER Caylee Hammack (Father’s Day)

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“Hey y’all! This is Caylee Hammack. For all you Dads out there, Happy Father’s Day.”

Audio / LINER Chrissy Metz (Father’s Day)

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“Hey, this is Chrissy Metz, wishing you a very Happy Father’s Day.”

Audio / LINER Dalton Dover (Father’s Day)

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“Hey y’all, this is Dalton Dover, wishing you a Happy Father’s Day.”

Audio / LINER Darius Rucker (Father’s Day)

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“Hey! What’s up? This is Darius Rucker wishing you a Happy Father’s Day.”

Audio / LINER Dillon James (Father’s Day)

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“Hey y’all, this is Dillon James. To all the Dads out there, Happy Father’s Day.”

 

Audio / LINER Eric Church (Father’s Day)

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“Hey! This is Eric Church, wishing you a Happy Father’s Day.”

Audio / LINER Jon Langston (Father’s Day)

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“Hey y’all, this is Jon Langston, wishing you a very Happy Father’s Day.”

Audio / LINER Jon Pardi (Happy Father’s Day)

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“Jon Pardi here. Happy Father’s Day to all you father’s out there.”

Audio / LINER Jon Pardi (Father’s Day) beer

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“Hey! It’s Jon Pardi, wishing all the fathers out there a very Happy Father’s Day. Here’s to you,  Senior.  Insert beer can opening sample (sound effect). (laughs)

Audio / LINER Jordan Davis (Father’s Day)

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“Hey! I’m Jordan Davis, wishing you all a Happy Father’s Day.”

Audio / LINER Josh Ross (Father’s Day)

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“Hey y’all, this is Josh Ross. To all the dads out there, wishing you a Happy Father’s Day.”

 

Audio / LINER Josh Turner (Father’s Day)

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“Hey y’all! This is Josh Turner, and I just want to wish all you father’s out there a Happy Father’s Day!”

Audio / LINER Kacey Musgraves (Father’s Day)

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“Hey! It’s Kacey Musgraves. Happy Father’s Day!”

Audio / LINER Keith Urban (Father’s Day)

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“Hey everyone! It’s Keith Urban, wishing all you Dads out there a Happy Father’s Day.”

Audio / LINER Kylie Morgan (Father’s Day)

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“Hey y’all, this is Kylie Morgan. Happy Father’s Day.”

Audio / LINER LBT (Father’s Day)

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“Hi! This is Little Big Town, wishing all you father’s a Happy Father’s Day.”

Audio / LINER Luke Bryan (Father’s Day)

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“Hey! This is Luke Bryan, wishing all the Fathers out there a very Happy Father’s Day. Here’s to you, Dad.”

Audio / LINER Maddie & Tae (Father’s Day)

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“Hey everybody! I’m Maddie and I’m Tae, wishing all you fathers out there a Happy Father’s Day.”

Audio / LINER Mickey Guyton (Father’s Day)

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“Hey everybody, this is Mickey Guyton, wishing you a very Happy Father’s Day.”

Audio / LINER Parker McCollum (Father’s Day)

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“Hey Everybody, I’m Parker McCollum, wishing you a very Happy Father’s Day.”

 

Audio / LINER Priscilla Block (Father’s Day)

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“Hey! It’s Priscilla Block. For all you fathers – Happy Father’s Day!”

 

Audio / LINER Sam Hunt (Father’s Day)

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“Hey! This is Sam Hunt. To all you fathers out there, Happy Father’s Day!”

Audio / LINER Shania Twain (Father’s Day)

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“Hi! This is Shania Twain. Happy Father’s Day.”

Audio / LINER The War And Treaty (Father’s Day)

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“Hey everybody! We are The War And Treaty, and to all the fathers out there all around the world – Happy Father’s Day to you.”

Audio / LINER Timothy Wayne (Father's Day)

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“Hey y’all, it’s Timothy Wayne, wishing all the fathers out there a very Happy Father’s Day.”

Audio / LINER Travis Denning (Father’s Day)

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“Hey y’all, it’s Travis Denning, wishing all you fathers out there a very Happy Father’s Day. Happy Father’s Day, Diamond Dave.”

Audio / LINER Vince Gill (Father’s Day)

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“Hey everybody! It’s Vince, and I just wanted to wish you a Happy Father’s Day. Wish mine was still around.”

HOOTIE & THE BLOWFISH RETURN TO THE ROAD THIS WEEK.

Hootie & the Blowfish are ready to return to the road for their Summer Camp with Trucks Tour with special guests Collective Soul and Edwin McCain.

They’ll will visit 43 cities across the U.S. and Canada. This marks the first full tour since 2019 for the band whose chart-topping, GRAMMY-award winning career has featured more than 25 million albums sold, including their 2x Diamond-certified debut album Cracked Rear View – which remains among the top 10 best-selling albums in all of music history – plus 17 Billboard-charting songs to date.

“We decided to go out this year, just ‘cause it’s the 30th anniversary of Cracked Rear View, and that was the subliminal moment of our career, so we just wanted to go out and honor that record by playing some shows this year,” says Darius Rucker.

Darius says the name of the tour actually came from Edwin McCain. “We were on our first headline tour and we took Edwin McCain out opening up and he was talking to a DJ, and the DJ was trying to get him to talk trash about Hootie & The Blowfish, saying it must be tough touring with us and everything. Edwin looked at the guy and said, ‘Man, touring with Hootie & The Blowfish is like summer camp with trucks,’ and that’s where the name came from.”

The trek kicks off on Thursday (May 30th) in Dallas and runs through September 28th in West Palm Beach, visiting arenas, amphitheaters and select stadiums such as Boston’s iconic Fenway Park (with special guests Barenaked Ladies) along the way, including a homecoming to Columbia, S.C.’s Colonial Life Arena for the Gamecock alumni.

Audio / Darius Rucker talks about the decision for Hootie & The Blowfish to tour this year.

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Darius Rucker (decision to tour with Hootie this year) OC: …shows this year. :17
“You know, it’s been five years since we’ve been out, but the last time we toured, it’d been 14 years since we’d gone out or something. We decided to go out this year, just ‘cause it’s the 30th anniversary of Cracked Rear View, and that was the subliminal moment of our career, so we just wanted to go out and honor that record by playing some shows this year.”

Audio / Darius Rucker explains how the name came about for this year's Hootie & The Blowfish Summer Camp With Trucks Tour.

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Darius Rucker (Hootie Tour name) OC: …name came from. :22
“In ’94, 5 or 6 or something – it might’ve been ’95 – we were on our first headline tour and we took Edwin McCain out opening up and he was talking to a DJ, and the DJ was trying to get him to talk trash about Hootie & The Blowfish, saying it must be tough touring with us and everything. Edwin looked at the guy and said, ‘Man, touring with Hootie & The Blowfish is like summer camp with trucks,’ and that’s where the name came from.”

DARIUS RUCKER RELEASES HIS MEMOIR, “LIFE’S TOO SHORT.”

Nearly forty years after the band’s formation, Darius Rucker tells his remarkable story through the lens of the songs that shaped him—from Al Green, Stevie Wonder, and KISS to Lou Reed, Billy Joel, Nanci Griffith, and so many more.

Set against the soundtrack of his life, Darius recounts his childhood as the son of a single mother in Charleston, South Carolina. He traces the unlikely ascent of his band and shares wild tales of life on the road—but he also faces his missteps, defeats, and demons. As moving as it is entertaining, Life’s Too Short is a timeless book about a man and his music.

As he prepares to embark on the first tour in five years with his Hootie & the Blowfish bandmates this week, frontman and Country music star in his own right Darius Rucker looks back across his multi-faceted career with raw, heartfelt memoir “Life’s Too Short” available everywhere today, May 28, via Dey Street Books. Order HERE.

Now multiple decades into his illustrious career, the three-time Grammy Award–winning, multi-Diamond-selling artist tells the story of his life through the lens of the music that made him, including songs by everyone from Frank Sinatra and Stevie Wonder to R.E.M., KISS, Prince and, of course, his own music both with Hootie and as a solo artist. He recounts the unlikely ascent of his band and wild tales of his road-hardened life—one filled with stumbles, missteps and battles with demons, but ultimately resulting in triumph. Candid, entertaining, and moving, “Life’s Too Short” is a classic story of a man and his music.

Rucker appeared on NBC’s “TODAY” this morning to discuss the memoir, noting “The Nanci Griffith chapter that I wrote about my mom when she was in a coma and when she died,” when asked which chapter was the most meaningful to write about. “Reading that back brought me to tears. That was very meaningful to me. That was most meaningful of all of them.”

The book has also earned early critical praise, with Entertainment Weekly noting, “Rucker’s memoir reads like he’s telling you his life story over a beer, with voicey asides and wisecracks strewn throughout… But between anecdotes about Woody Harrelson saving his life and dunking on teens at the YMCA while on tour, a pure, unabashed love for music permeates every page.”

The Washington Post adds, “While anecdotes about the band’s penchant for drinking and drug use are a small part of the book, Rucker’s decision to include such details upfront sends a message: There’s a lot more to the Hootie & the Blowfish story than the massive success that made them both Grammy winners and a cultural punchline,” and USA Today explains of the memoir’s musical through line, “Rucker’s memories – the painful and the ecstatic – are recounted in chapters introduced by song titles: Billy Joel’s ‘Honesty’ for his eventual pairing with guitarist Mark Bryan and their discussions about forming a band; ‘Ships’ from Barry Manilow about his passing-in-the-night relationship with his father; ‘So. Central Rain’ from one of Hootie & the Blowfish’s biggest inspirations, R.E.M., in the chapter about Rucker meeting bassist Dean Felber, who became a soulmate as well as a bandmate.”

Following this week’s kickoff of the Hootie & the Blowfish Summer Camp with Trucks Tour (tickets available here), Rucker returns to Nashville for his annual “Darius & Friends” benefit concert in support of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital which has raised $3.6 million to date.

For more information on all projects and upcoming events, visit DariusRucker.com and follow on social media @DariusRucker.

“Life’s Too Short”
Memoir
by Darius Rucker
with Alan Eisenstock
Dey Street Books
Hardcover ISBN: 9780063238749 | $29.99
E-book ISBN: 9780063238763 | $14.99

About Darius Rucker
Rucker first achieved multi-Platinum status in the music industry as lead singer and rhythm guitarist of the GRAMMY Award-winning band Hootie & the Blowfish, who have sold more than 25 million albums worldwide including their Double Diamond-certified (21x Platinum) debut Cracked Rear View, which remains among the top 10 best-selling studio albums of all time. Since releasing his first Country album in 2008, Rucker has earned a whole new legion of fans with four No. 1 albums on the Billboard Country chart plus 10 No. 1 singles at Country radio and 11 Gold, Platinum or multi-Platinum certified hits. Rucker was inducted as a Grand Ole Opry member in 2012 and in 2014 he won his third career GRAMMY Award for Best Solo Country Performance with his Diamond-certified (11x Platinum) version of “Wagon Wheel,” one of the top five best-selling Country songs of all time. His brand-new album Carolyn’s Boy (featuring current single “Never Been Over”) is available everywhere now and his first book, a memoir titled “Learn to Live” is available now via Dey Street Books.

As a lifelong philanthropist, Rucker co-chaired the capital campaign that generated $150 million to help build the new MUSC Shawn Jenkins Children’s Hospital in his hometown of Charleston, S.C. and has raised over $3.6 million for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital through his annual Darius & Friends benefit concert and golf tournament. In addition, Rucker has advocated for over 200 charitable causes supporting public education and junior golf programs in South Carolina through the Hootie & the Blowfish Foundation and serves as a National Chair for the National Museum of African American Music in Nashville, Tenn. Rucker is also an avid sports fan, with his Darius Rucker Collection by Fanatics line of NFL, MLB and NCAA apparel available at Fanatics.com, and he is part of the Music City Baseball investment group working to bring an MLB team to Tennessee in addition to serving as a partner at the MGC Sports & Entertainment agency.

For more information, visit www.dariusrucker.com and follow on social media @DariusRucker.

Audio / Darius Rucker talks about the songs and artists that influenced his new memoir.

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Darius Rucker (songs that influenced book) OC: …the story. :34
“Those songs that we chose for the book, you know, from ‘Beth’ from KISS, which was an enormous song for me as a kid. The REM songs we chose, Nanci Griffith, those songs were moments of my life where I listened to those songs every day, multiple times a day. So, you know, when we decided to name the chapters after songs that meant something to me, that was perfect for me, because music is, brings back all the memories I have coming back with music, so that was a good way to tell it, tell the story.”

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