Excellent album steeped in the Southern California country-rock sound of the '70s, with all the usual suspects – Danny Kortchmar, Waddy Wachtel, Kenny Edwards, and Russ Kunkel, producer Peter Asher – all Ronstadt veterans, plus Glenn Frey and Don Henley from the Eagles) in place on such songs as "Faithless Love," "Simple Man, Simple Dream," and "Silver Blue".
Kevin Costner, Robin Wright Penn, and Paul Newman star in this romantic tale about a sailor who dispatches love letters to sea in memory of his late wife. Just as the love letters are viewed as among the most touching ever written, the soundtrack is equally sentimental–16 tracks that evoke wistful days spent staring out of windows pining for lost love. Edwin McCain delivers Diane Warren's surprisingly modest "I Could Not Ask for More," a song written specifically for the movie. Sheryl Crow and Sarah McLachlan turn soft and spooky with their whispery "Carolina" and "I Love You," respectively. Sinéad Lohan and Beth Nielsen Chapman backlight their middle-of-the-road sensibilities with dance beats. Hootie & the Blowfish's "Only Lonely" is far closer to country music (Glen Campbell-style) than country artist Faith Hill's "Let Me Let Go." Gabriel Yared contributes the instrumental title track as well as two other pieces of overswelling movie music.
Hootie & the Blowfish never were cut out to be superstars. They were meant to be the best band at the local bar. They were ordinary guys, and they played ordinary music, the kind that could be heard in any college town on the East Coast or Midwest during the early '90s when the local bar wasn't having grunge night. It was the ordinariness of the music on their 1994 debut, Cracked Rear View, that connected with millions of American listeners – they sounded like everybody's favorite local band. Once they were superstars, their bubble burst fairly quickly as the 1996 follow-up sold considerably fewer than the debut, and by the end of the decade, they had settled into a reliable routine of turning out modest records and touring steadily, without many people outside of their core fans noticing. Their popularity might have declined, but as the 2004 Atlantic/Rhino compilation The Best of Hootie & the Blowfish (1993 Thru 2003) illustrates, their music changed very little over the course of the decade, nor did the quality of their music decline.