(CMT Offstage keeps a 24/7 watch on everything that's happening with country music artists behind the scenes and out of the spotlight.)
How country is Darius Rucker? "Hootie's more country than some of those country bands." That's what Rucker's wife Beth told a country radio station in Charleston, S.C. She was talking about how Rucker has always leaned a little more country, even when he was fronting the wildly popular rock band Hootie & the Blowfish. And how honored and awed Rucker was when he was invited to join the Grand Ole Opry earlier this week. (So much so, she said, he still can't watch the video of himself accepting the invitation from Brad Paisley because it brings him to tears. For me, I don't cry until the part where you see Rucker hug Paisley, who whispers to Rucker, "Welcome home.") "That's the epitome of 'You are part of our family,'" she said of the invitation. But Rucker's son, Jack? Not quite as awed and/or aware of the significance. When Rucker got back from Nashville, his son just said, "Congratulations on whatever just happened."