"Darius, you're two for two," said Country Radio Broadcasters executive director Ed Salamon as he handed Darius Rucker an airplay award for his second consecutive No. 1 single. "You're probably wondering, 'Why didn't I do this long ago?'"
Photo Credit: Marilu White
Rucker, who recorded multiplatinum albums as lead singer of Hootie & the Blowfish, has already achieved significant success since launching his solo career as a country artist.
Salamon was among several music industry figures who convened Monday (June 15) at ASCAP's headquarters in Nashville to honor Rucker and his co-writers, Chris DuBois and Ashley Gorley, for the success of the single, "It Won't Be Like This for Long."
The song, which chronicles a father's bittersweet awareness of his daughter's growing up, recently stayed at No. 1 for three weeks on the Billboard charts.
Rucker's first No. 1 single as a solo country artist was "Don't Think I Don't Think About It," which he also co-wrote. Learn to Live, the album on which these songs appear, has sold nearly 700,000 copies.
Mike Dungan, president of Rucker's label, Capitol Records Nashville, saluted the singer as "a man who has changed our lives in ways that can't be described." He said Rucker's achievements were about more than money and record sales.
"Don't Think I Don't Think About It," which peaked on the chart in late 2008, was the first No. 1 country single by a black recording artist since Charley Pride reached the top in 1983 with "Night Games."
Dungan promised the well-wishers crowded into ASCAP's reception hall that they would soon be coming back for another Rucker No. 1 celebration. The artist is currently touring as an opening act for Rascal Flatts.
"It started with Ashley talking about his kids," said Rucker as he recalled the origins of his latest hit. "And the next thing, we'd written a song about our kids."
Rucker reserved the highest praise for his record producer.
"None of us would be sitting here if Frank Rogers wasn't such a genius," he asserted.
View photos from the Darius Rucker No. 1 party.