Back to Then

Back to Then

by Darius Rucker
4.6 8


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Back to Then

It may come as a shock to his core, rock-loving fan base, but Hootie & the Blowfish frontman Darius Rucker has undergone a much-needed music makeover -- one that's sure to surprise and delight R&B enthusiasts with a jones for the mellow, retro-soul musings of Musiq and Raphael Saadiq. Imagewise, Rucker has even swapped his trademark baseball cap and grungy tee and jeans for a so fresh and so clean wardrobe befitting a modern-day blues man. "This is the record I thought I was going to make before I joined Hootie," Rucker says in his bio. "With this album, I'm just going back to where I came from." So you won't find any Hootie frat-rock anthems on Rucker's aptly titled solo outing, Back to Then. Instead, the disc overflows with 13 richly produced, crossover-ready soul jams that will give listeners a new appreciation for the raspy baritone's skill at singing rhythm and blues. Highlights include the tight horn section-accented, Steely Dan-reminiscent "Wild One," the groovy, mantra-like "Sometimes I Wonder," a duet with Hidden Beach labelmate Jill Scott, and the funky, harmony-layered "Sleeping in My Bed," featuring a smooth rap from Snoop Dogg. Rucker delves even deeper into his black music roots on the gospel-inspired ballad "Somewhere." On that organ-driven track, led in by a stirring a cappella rendering of "Amazing Grace," Rucker lifts his voice on high with the spiritually uplifting lyrics, "I'm still knowing/I'm still growing/Still believing/Still achieving." And for those who didn't realize Hootie possessed so much heart and soul, those words certainly ring true.

Product Details

Release Date: 07/30/2002
Label: Hidden Beach
UPC: 0696998649224
catalogNumber: 86492

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Darius Rucker   Primary Artist,Vocals,Background Vocals
Snoop Dogg   Vocals
Darrell "Delite" Allamby   Background Vocals
Davis A. Barnett   Viola
Jimmy Cozier   Background Vocals
Larry Gold   Cello
Vivian Green   Background Vocals
Keith Henderson   Guitar
Kipper Jones   Background Vocals
Richard Patterson   Bass
Antoinette Roberson   Background Vocals
Andy Snitzer   Alto Saxophone
Ryan Toby   Background Vocals
Jay Williams   Guitar
Jim Hynes   Trumpet
Rick Williams   Bass,Guitar
Jeff Kievit   Trumpet
Ethan Farmer   Bass
Emma Kummrow   Violin
Terry Tribbett   Bass
Byron Williams   Organ
Lil' Mo   Background Vocals
Eric Roberson   Background Vocals
Erik Sayles   Acoustic Guitar
Ivan Dupée   Organ,Synthesizer,Bass,Clavinet,fender rhodes
Keith Pelzer   fender rhodes
Jill Scott   Vocals
Vidal Davis   Drums
Gwenita Jackson   Background Vocals
Daniel Johnson   Background Vocals
Woody Harrelson   Background Vocals

Technical Credits

Darrell "Delite" Allamby   Vocal Producer
Jimmy Cozier   Producer,Vocal Arrangements
Joe Mardin   Horn Arrangements
Steve McKeever   Liner Notes,Executive Producer
Ryan Toby   Vocal Arrangements
Serban Ghenea   Engineer
Edward "DJ Eddie F" Ferrell   Arranger,Producer,drum programming,Instrumentation
Darius Rucker   Executive Producer,Vocal Arrangements
Ivan Dupée   Programming,Producer,Engineer,Vocal Arrangements,drum programming
Brian Garten   Engineer
Evan Lamberg   Executive Producer
Keith Pelzer   Producer,Engineer
Darrin Lightly   Arranger,Producer,drum programming,Instrumentation
Jill Scott   Vocal Arrangements
Vidal Davis   Producer,Engineer
Jeff Smith   Executive Producer
Jeeve   Producer,Engineer
Josh Wilbur   Engineer
Thornell Jones   Marketing
Darren "Limitless" Henson   Producer
Shawn Hibbler   Contributor,Drum Fills
Gus Rickette   drum programming
Jacob Robinson   Engineer
Michele DelGadio   Art Direction
Jazz Nixon   Producer
David "D-Lo" Lopez   Engineer
Chris Conway   Engineer

Customer Reviews

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Back to Then 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 8 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I heard "Wild One" and loved it. So then I had to hear the others and i honestly like all of them. There definatly is a range of styles from Gospel, to jazz and r&b. People think he's a musician of the past, but this cd is great.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I can only say after feeling the notes of each song, Darius, What took you so long to give us all you had to offer. I will always remember where you started, but I am glad to know where you are going. Thank you..... Carol
Guest More than 1 year ago
Darius Rucker, with the highly identifiable baritone that brought Hootie and the Blowfish to fame, answers his critics who claim that he doesn't have a "soulful enough voice" with this CD. This is 180 degrees different from his work with Hootie, so if you were expecting that type of music on this CD, you will not find it here....the focus is purely on R&B and urban pop. There are some people out there that will say that Darius should have never made this record, that he should have stuck with the same successful formula that he was using with the group. But what's the good of making a solo effort if you're just going to do the same thing over again? So these new recordings just simply show us there's another side to the man....and I am FEELING IT!! Don't make the mistake of pigeon-holing this talented brother! He has several notables in the realm of today's R&B assisting him on BACK TO THEN: Lil' Mo, Jimmy Cozier, Musiq Soulchild, Jill Scott, and DJ Jazzy Jeff's A Touch of Jazz Productions (known for their use of real and live intrumentation, as opposed to sampling or using artificial means to create music, like much of R&B is today) to name just a few, but their contributions never overshadow the fact that this is Darius' CD. He has a refreshing old school/neo-soul vibe going. I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that this is a CD that has "Grammy" written all over it. The CD opens with Darius' current single climbing the charts (and my favorite song right now), "Wild One", written by Ryan Toby of the R&B group City High, but Darius co-wrote most of the songs on BACK TO THEN, that range from original head-bopping upbeat tunes to mellow, sensual ballads. He has proven himself to be an exceptional and sensitive songwriter, which was evident by his work with Hootie, and now he brings his talents to the R&B world with gems such as "Exodus", "Back To Then", "This Is My World", "Somewhere" , the excellent and heartfelt love ballad "Ten Years", and "Sometimes I Wonder", a silky, sexy duet that features neo-soul songstress and labelmate Jill Scott (Darius refers to her as his "Tammi Terrell"), which stands out as the showstopper on this CD. A close second is the sultry Prince-influenced "One More Night". And Darius gives us his amazing rendition of an Al Green oldie, "I'm Glad You're Mine". "Butterfly" and "Hold On" are both bluesy rockers that Hootie fans should like. The CD only hits one speed bump: The hip-hop track "Sleeping In My Bed" that features Snoop just did not fit, and let's just say that hip-hop is NOT Darius' forte. But with that one exception, BACK TO THEN is TIGHT! A impressive debut from the artist mistakenly known as "Hootie" everyone will know the name "Darius Rucker" instead!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I really enjoy this album. Darius has proven once and for all, that he is a very talented musician. He co-wrote most of the songs, and has a rich unique sound that must be heard. It's so nice to hear an artist who's not afraid to come out with a slow blues'ish solo. At a time when too many artists are just following a happy tune, it's just refreshing to hear this sound. This album is a must buy for all blues fans. This harkens back to Nat, and other great blues/soul artists.
Guest More than 1 year ago
My opinion is that most people out there cannot look at Darius Rucker without seeing him in only one role: the lead singer of Hootie and the Blowfish and singing only one type of music. This is unfortunate because BACK TO THEN is a very good solo effort, a celebration of old school soul. Darius enlists the assistance of some of today's R&B heavy hitters (Musiq, Jimmy Cozier, Lil Mo, Jill Scott and DJ Jazzy Jeff's A Touch of Jazz Productions) and the result is a pop/retro-soul vibe that can compete with anything else out here these days, and perhaps even surpass it. Okay, it does have its flaws (the unnecessary hip-hop track with Snoop Dogg, "Sleeping In My Bed", which didn't seem like it even belonged on the CD), but Darius shows us that he has more versatility in his voice than what you hear on the Hootie records. This is a very soulful CD. R&B legends like Marvin Gaye, Al Green and Otis Redding come to mind when you hear the cuts. The most outstanding songs are the gem "Exodus", "Sometimes I Wonder" (the duet with Jill Scott, who BTW, does NOT outsing Darius, as some folks are saying...the both of them are rather subdued in this song because it's a romantic ballad, HELLO!), "Wild One", "Back To Then", "This Is My World", "Butterfly" and "Ten Years" (not overdone, but sincere and heartfelt, no matter what some are saying). As Darius says, "this is how I can either accept me or..." Well, there's no question in my mind what the choice is! Do NOT sleep on this! Darius, I wish you all the best and look forward to hearing more from you as a soloist.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Those of you who are looking for a follow-up to the Hootie and The Blowfish, be surprised! Darius Rucker's sound is unique, yet enjoyable. This album was a surprise to me, but the album as a whole is well written and performed. Rucker has more of a blues sound, very soulful. I recommend it.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Darius Rucker¿s debut solo album, Back to Then, will most definitely bring something new to your C.D. collection, Although he was the frontline man for alternative group Hootie and the Blowfish, he does bring a new flavor for an extended audience. His C.D. had a combination of sounds ranging from gospel tunes to gritty blues inspired vibes. He also delivers a soulful taste with his collaborations with Jill Scott and Lil¿ Mo on a couple of tracks. However, Darius does keep some of the essence that will keep the Hootie and the Blowfish fans happy also. The sound is definitely a little unique, but it is pretty contagious. This is certainly something for the music listener who is tired of characterless music and processed sound.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago