Darius Rucker's Dubious Acheivement

So, the former Hootie and the Blowfish vocalist has been nominated for two Country Music Awards, and could be the first African-American performer identified as a country artist to win in the Best Male Vocalist category since Charley Pride won in 1971.

Good for him. But if not exactly a hollow victory, it would be a bittersweet one: Rucker's brand of country--as clearly evidenced by his most recent, platinum-selling Learn to Live [Capitol] album--is just more of the pop-rock with a twang that passes for country music these days.