It started in 1986 with a funny name.
Hootie & the Blowfish.
Who knew that the college bar band formed in Columbia would one day inspire Hootie-mania across the nation?
When Darius Rucker, Mark Bryan, Jim “Soni” Sonefeld and Dean Felber released the band’s first LP, “Cracked Rear View” in 1994, people couldn’t get enough of “Hold My Hand,” “Let Her Cry” and “Only Wanna Be With You.”
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In Columbia, fans were so excited that several local music stores offered midnight releases of the album. It sold more than 10 million copies.
A hometown band had finally “made it.”
After “Cracked Rear View” came out, Michael Miller, The State’s music reporter at the time, wrote, “Liverpool had the Beatles, London its Rolling Stones ... Now Columbia has hitmakers of its own: Hootie & the Blowfish.”