Darius Rucker Remembers the First Time He Saw a 'F—k Hootie' Bumper Sticker: 'Laughed My Ass Off'

Darius Rucker appears on this week's episode of PEOPLE in the '90s

Hootie & the Blowfish
Photo: Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic

Darius Rucker was unfazed when he saw a mean sticker while driving down the road.

Speaking on the latest episode of PEOPLE's PEOPLE in the '90s podcast this week, the Hootie and the Blowfish frontman, 55, shared what it was like to see a 'F— Hootie' sticker back in the day, saying he "absolutely" saw it while driving once.

"That's a problem you have when things get so big, when you get something that's selling a million records a week, people have to hate it. Or they're not cool," Rucker tells hosts Jason Sheeler and Andrea Lavinthal.

"I laughed my ass off," Rucker adds. "I was driving my brand new truck to my brand new house and was playing in front of 20,000 people that weekend."

"I didn't care about the 'F— Hootie' sticker," he continues. "I'm good. I'm good!"

The bumper stickers are something his bandmates have talked about in the past. Guitarist Mark Bryan told Rolling Stone in 2019 that they saw one of the bumper stickers while driving behind a truck in Baltimore.

"I was like, 'Wow, I never even met this guy and he hates me,' " Bryan said then.

During the podcast, Rucker also spoke about the questions the band would receive about their racial makeup given that most of the band is white and Rucker, the frontman, is Black.

"It's really sad to see how we [took] such a step back, I think, and all that stuff. I saw that thing in Alabama — the Alabama legislator guy just gets up and calls somebody else a bad word, how do you do that in the middle of the legislation?" Rucker recalls, referring to a July incident where city council member Tommy Bryant, who is white, used the n-word during a public meeting. "It's amazing to me how it is now. It's not even just worse. It's popular. And people think it's cool now to be a racist. That's just absolutely asinine to me."

Hootie & the Blowfish
Paul Natkin/Getty

And while racism continues to be alive, Rucker says "the industry has gotten better."

"I mean, when I first came to Nashville, you know, it was a bunch of naysayers, a bunch of, 'This is never going to work because you're black,'" Rucker says.

"They said we'd play it, but my audience would never accept a black country singer," he adds. "That's what I was told."

Today, things are different. "It's so awesome to be a part of opening that door and seeing now all these country labels, not only not throwing out the black singer when they get the CD, but they're actually — everybody's looking to sign guys and girls now. I love the fact that I was a part of that."

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