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"Last Name" is the title of a song composed by country singer Carrie Underwood, Hillary Lindsey and Luke Laird. It is the
third single from Underwood's second studio album, Carnival Ride. It was released in the United States on April 7,
Last Name"
Single by Carrie Underwood
from the album Carnival Ride
Released April 8, 2008 (U.S.)
Format CD single, digital download
Recorded 2007
Genre Country, country rock
Length 4:01
Label Arista Nashville
Writer(s) Luke Laird

Hillary Lindsey Carrie Underwood

Producer Mark Bright
Certification Platinum (RIAA)
Carrie Underwood singles chronology
"All-American Girl"(2007) "Last Name"(2008) "Praying for Time"(2008)
Carnival Ride track listing
"I Know You Won't"


"Last Name"


"You Won't Find This"


Music video

2008,[1] by which point the song had already charted. At the 51st Grammy Awards, the song won Underwood her third consecutive Grammy award for "Best Female Country Vocal Performance". It has sold 1,078,000 copies to date.[2]


[edit] BackgroundEdit

The song is one of four tracks on the album co-written by Underwood, and the third consecutive one to be released as a single from the album. It is a moderate up-tempo describing a woman meeting a man at a club and later eloping with him in Las Vegas after having had too much to drink that night. She wakes up the next morning, "thinkin' 'bout Elvis somewhere in Vegas", to discover that she does not even know her last name (i.e., she married the man while she was intoxicated), and worries that her "mama would be so ashamed." The music video portrays the song as a prequel to her "Before He Cheats" song, even going so far as to hire the same actor to play the man in question.

[edit] Critical receptionEdit

The single was generally met with positive reviews.

Allmusic picked the song as a "track pick", calling the song "Miranda Lambert filtered through Shania Twain", and dubbed it a "one night stand anthem."[3] Rolling Stone picked the track as their favorite, saying "the most fun is "Last Name," where she gets wasted and runs off to Vegas with a guy she doesn't know."[4] Blender awarded the song four out of five stars, describing the song as the "most irresponsible (and fun) moment on the new album involves one wild night, one too many shots of Cuervo and one unexpected ring."[5] Billboard gave a positive review of the track, praising the lyrics: "It's a cleverly penned lyric that hilariously celebrates drunken debauchery" as well as summing it up as "a performance that combines soulful vocals, edgy intensity and sassy attitude into a delicious cocktail."[6]

However, it also received some negative reviews: The 9513 gave the song a 'thumbs down', describing the song as a "straight-laced performance" that just "places the focus on the vocal".[7] Slant Magazine labelled the single as a "bald-faced attempt at recreating the 'Before He Cheats' phenomenon".[8]

[edit] AwardsEdit

[edit] 35th People's Choice AwardsEdit

Year Nominated work Award Result
2009 "Last Name" Country Song of the Year Won

[edit] 51st Grammy AwardsEdit

Year Nominated work Award Result
2009 "Last Name" Best Female Country Vocal Performance Won

[edit] 2010 CMA Triple-Play AwardsEdit

Year Nominated work Award Result
2010 "Last Name" Triple-Play Songwriter (along with "So Small", "All-American Girl") Won

[edit] 2009 BMI AwardsEdit

Year Nominated work Award Result
2009 "Last Name" Songwriter of the Year (Carrie Underwood) Won

[edit] PromotionEdit

  • Underwood performed the song live for the first time on Television during the 43rd Annual Academy of Country Music Awards on May 18, 2008.
  • Underwood also performed the song live at the American Idol Season 7 finale on May 21, 2008 — the single reached a new digital download peak at #10 which helped the song to show at #19 on Billboard Hot 100.

[edit] Music videoEdit

The song is described in the video as what happened before the "Before He Cheats" video.

The video starts with some segments from "Before He Cheats" and then goes into a scene three months earlier ("before he cheated", it says) with her in the club drinking with her friends. The same man from the "Before He Cheats" spots her and asks her for a dance. From this point on, while the guy is with Underwood, he is flirting with every other woman he sees. After the dance, Underwood leaves with the guy in his car with fuzzy dice in the rear view mirror. They make it out to Las Vegas where they participate in a couple of gambling activities such as roulette and a Wheel of Fortune game where they win a new truck. Later they get married in a chapel with an Elvis impersonator officiating. They run off in his new pickup truck (the one used in "Before He Cheats") and the video ends with a spark from the chapel sign lights.

[edit] Chart performanceEdit

The song debuted at #46 on the U.S. Billboard Hot Country Songs chart, nearly a month before the single's official release. For the week of June 21, 2008 it rose from #5 to #1, to become her fifth straight number one on the Billboard chart, her seventh straight number one country single, and her eighth number one Billboard single overall. This marked Underwood as the first solo female artist to have five consecutive #1s on the country survey in almost 20 years, since Rosanne Cash had a string of six number one titles between 1987-89.[9] It is the third country number one from Carnival Ride and reached the top of the chart faster than the first two singles, taking only thirteen weeks. "Last Name" has sold about 1,078,000 downloads as of August 2011.

On the Hot 100 the song has reached #19, making it Underwood's fifth top twenty Hot 100 hit, and the second from Carnival Ride.

Chart (2008) Peak


Canada (Canadian Hot 100)[10] 34
US Billboard Hot 100[11] 19
US Adult Pop Songs (Billboard)[12] 31
US Country Songs (Billboard)[13] 1
Preceded by

"I'm Still a Guy" by Brad Paisley

Billboard Hot Country Songs

number-one single June 21, 2008

Succeeded by

"Better as a Memory" by Kenny Chesney

Preceded by

"Before He Cheats" by Carrie Underwood

Grammy Award for

Best Female Country Vocal performance 2009

Succeeded by

"White Horse" by Taylor Swift

[edit] Release historyEdit

Region Date Format Label
United States April 8, 2008 Airplay Arista Nashville
Canada Sony Music
United Kingdom April 9, 2008

[edit] Cover versionsEdit