Darius Rucker had a No. 1 hit in 2010 with “Come Back Song,” the debut single from his sophomore country album, Charleston, SC 1966, but the singer says he almost didn’t record the track. The song was co-written by Rucker, Casey Beathard and soon-to-be country star Chris Stapleton. Stapleton also lent his larger than life voice to the original demo track, which caused Rucker to be hesitant about recording it for the album.
“Every time Chris sings I’m just blown away,” Rucker told RADIO.COM’s Katie & Company in a recent interview. “The really great story about that song is we demoed it and Chris sang the demo. So, we go in the studio and we’re picking songs before go in, and my producer, who’s also a friend of Chris’s, is picking songs, and he’s like, ‘What about this ‘Come Back Song’?’ And I’m like, ‘Nah, nah man. I’m not feeling that one, I don’t want to cut it.’”
Rucker says his producer kept pushing the question about recording the song every day they were in the studio until he finally admitted that he didn’t want to compare himself to Chris.
“The last day of recording, he goes, ‘Hey man, why don’t you want to record this song? It’s a great song, I think it’s a hit.’ And I was like, ‘Man, have you heard the demo? I could never sing it like that! He kills that. I could never open my mouth and sing it that way because it’s too great.’ And he was like, ‘Well, let’s cut it, we’ll change the keys, sing it, and if you don’t like it, we won’t use it.’ And of course it was the first single off the record.”
Rucker still collaborates with Stapleton to this day, but he just has one little rule he asks the fellow musician to follow.
“I told him, when we write now, ‘Man, you can’t do the demos.’”
Now, 11 years after the release of “Come Back Song,” Rucker has another No. 1 on his hands with his latest hit, “Beers And Sunshine.”