By Brian Ives 

Darius Rucker’s post-Hootie and the Blowfish career continues with his latest single, “If I Told You,” which is the first taste of his upcoming album, due out later this year.

Rucker generally writes or co-writes all of his songs, but this one came from songwriters Ross Copperman, Shane McAnally and Jon Nite. “I’m not big into outside songs,” he tells Radio.com. “I write so much [music]. But this song was brought to me by a producer and my A&R guy at Capitol, and it just blew me away. It was really one of those songs, the first time I heard the demo, I went, ‘Wow, that’s me.’ I even said to Shane McAnally, ‘Man, I can’t believe you didn’t put me in the room for this one because you’re writing about me.'”

“It caught me instantly,” he says. “‘The man I got my name from, I don’t even know where he is now.’ I thought, ‘That’s my life. I’ve lived that life since I was a baby.'”

He continues: “‘What if I told you sometimes I lose my faith, I wonder why someone like you would talk to me.’ To this day that’s how I feel about life. That was the thing that just kept coming back every time I heard a line, I went, ‘That’s me. That’s me.’ And that’s why it was so easy to sing that song for me.”

Related: Watch Darius Rucker Celebrate His Roots in ‘Southern Style’ Video

One of the reasons the song resonates is because it addresses something that too many people relate to: growing up without a father. “The old joke about country music used to be ‘My wife left me and took my dog,’ but it’s not really like that anymore. Country music’s so about the nuclear family and living the southern lifestyle and everything. And that was another thing that attracted me to this song. It was about real life. And that, for me, was like, ‘Man, I want people to hear this song.’ That’s why I cut it. I want people to hear it. It’s one of those songs that I think a lot of people will relate to, and they do. I get so many messages about, ‘Man, this is my life.’ I go ‘Yeah, it’s mine too.'”

For Rucker, the song stands out from most love songs. “The song is so honest. Love songs have always tended to be… not sappy, but the song is about ‘I love you, I love you, this is great.’ This is one of these songs that was just so different. It was saying, ‘Look, I got problems. I got real problems, like everybody. I got real problems. I’m not gonna sugarcoat it, I’m gonna tell you what my problems are, and after I do that, do you still wanna be with me?’ I just thought that was an awesome sentiment in the song.”

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