This up-tempo country song is the lead single from Carrie Underwood's third studio album, Play On. The song warns of a particular kind of seducer who can be quite enticing, but is ultimately bad news.
An inferior version of this cut leaked online on September 2, 2009. The song's premature unveiling prompted Underwood's label to rush out an official version and put it on YouTube.
The song was co-written by Underwood with Brett James, who penned her 2006 hit "Jesus, Take The Wheel
," and Mike Elizondo, who is best known for his hip-hop collaborations with artists such as Eminem, 50 Cent and Dr. Dre.
In this song Carrie warns another woman to stay away from this good-time cowboy as he's "candy-coated misery/ He's the devil in disguise /A snake with blue eyes."
When this song climbed 11-8 on the Country songs chart week of October 17, 2009, Underwood became the first solo female artist to achieve 10 Top Ten Country hits in the 21st century.
Carrie Underwood told CMT: "I think to every woman, this song would be telling a story about someone they know or met or has tried to pick them up in a bar. There's definitely guys in my past, even if it was a friend's boyfriend or something."
Underwood added that in this sassy country/pop hit, she's not necessary bashing the title dude. "We're not trashing this guy; we're just warning these other girls about him. Who knows, maybe now people can listen to this song and better identify these men," she said, jokingly adding, "I'm helping women around the world!"
Some of Underwood's collaborators on Play On, including Elizondo on this song, were unexpected choices for the Country star. She recalled to The Associated Press: "I think everybody kind of freaked out at first. And it was something that we did take into consideration, that people would be like, 'What's going on here? Everybody kind of flipped out over Mike Elizondo, who I really like. They're like, 'He's a rap producer.' And it's like, well, yes, he has done that, but he's also worked with Nelly Furtado and Pink and Fiona Apple. I'm just another name he's adding to his resume of all different kinds of music."
This was Underwood's eighth #1 on the Country chart. The song only took ten weeks to rise to the peak position, making it her fastest-rising chart-topper to date.
Underwood and James spoke to AOL's The Boot about the writing of this song:
Underwood: "People are always asking about 'Cowboy Casanova' - like, who's that? And they try to make it about one specific guy in particular. But 'country music' and 'cowboy' are part of my vocabulary, so I'm not aiming that towards any particular football team, or guy or anything! I sing country music, so I sing about cowboys. But 'Cowboy Casanova' is about a type of guy - not about a cowboy. I think of cowboy as being quiet and strong and rugged and good looking... and having an inner confidence kind of thing. Not necessarily just boots and hat."
James: "With 'Cowboy Casanova,' we started with a concept - how should we write about a 'Cowboy Casanova?' What's the story we need to tell about this guy? And we decided that the way to tell it would be to warn women about him. [laughs] Because the singer, Carrie, puts herself in the place of the woman who's been burned by this guy, and she wants to warn other women about the evil of his ways."
Underwood: "I think to every woman, this song would be telling a story about someone they know or met, or has tried to pick them up in a bar. There's definitely guys in my past, even if it was a friend's boyfriend or something."
James told The Boot about Mike Elizondo's contribution to the song: "Mike really came in with a lot of the musical side of this song - that whole beat, the electric riffs. He brought that in with him, and said he'd been thinking all day about this kind of groove. And the way Carrie and I work, we're both singers and come from the lyric point, so we both just started singing on top of what he was doing."
This song won Video of the Year at the 2010 Country Music Television Awards.