It was 21 years ago that Hootie & the Blowfish‘s “Hold My Hand” was the song of the summer, filling the airwaves of 1994 with a pop-rock plea for “a little peace and some harmony.” Now, with the weather heating up and the 2015 summertime tour season already underway, the song is back — this time with a few different characters involved.
Those characters include Brett Eldredge, Brothers Osborne and A Thousand Horses, the three opening acts for the majority of Darius Rucker’s Southern Style Tour. Launched on May 14th, the four-month trek is one of country music’s hottest tickets, stocked with chart-toppers, up-and-comers and, as of this week, the Number One country band on country radio. That final accolade goes to roots-rock rookies A Thousand Horses, whose “Smoke” recently climbed to the top of the Country Airplay chart. New bands rarely hit Number One out of the gate, and the Southern Style crew has begun celebrating as a result, with virtually everyone hitting the stage toward the end of Rucker’s nightly headlining set to perform “Hold My Hand.”
In the video above, the tour makes a stop in Camden, New Jersey, to help celebrate the 31st anniversary of Philadelphia’s XTU radio station. Rucker’s keyboardist kicks off a swampy, twang-heavy version of “Hold My Hand,” and Rucker takes the first verse before passing the torch to Eldredge. The rest of the song barrels ahead in similar fashion, with T.J. Osborne singing his own verse — the one that kicks off with “You see, I was wasted” — while appropriately clutching a red solo cup, and his brother John Osborne ripping into an inspired guitar solo. Later, A Thousand Horses frontman Michael Hobby reprises the first verse before the song ends in a series of sing-along choruses and fiddle freakouts.
The Southern Style Tour runs through August, with all three openers playing the majority of Rucker’s dates.