Despite country's southern roots, there remains a dearth of black artists. Darius Rucker dipped his toes in those muddy waters in the past, but alas, Lionel Richie's new country album doesn't wade in much deeper.
It's an American pop music creation myth: that blues and folk music developed along two distinct tracks, with their own distinct traditions, divided along racial lines. The truth is, of course, far more slippery and complicated.
With his first post-Hootie album, Darius Rucker raids the cupboard of contemporary country music... only to find paint-by-number ballads and steady-as-she-goes hillbilly rockers that fail to stamp his identity anywhere.