Before He Cheats

Album: Some Hearts (2005)
Charted: 8
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  • This song is about revenge. Underwood sings about going into a parking lot and vandalizing her cheating boyfriend's 4x4 truck with a baseball bat. She finds solace knowing that the next time he cheats, it won't be on her. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Karen - Canton, NC
  • When Underwood sings about her ex putting on "bathroom Polo," she's referring to vending machines found in the men's rooms of certain US drinking establishments that dispense low-grade cologne. The guys who buy these fragrances often believe it will help them attract a mate in the bar, although many females are actually repelled by the scent.
  • This song won the trophy for Single Of The Year at the 2007 Country Music Association Awards. In addition, Carrie Underwood also won the award for Female Vocalist Of The Year.
  • In February 2008 "Before He Cheats" became the first country song to achieve RIAA certification as a Double-Platinum Digital Single, recognizing 2 million purchased downloads.
  • Underwood performed this at the 2008 Grammy awards with the cast of Stomp, which acted as backup dancers and percussionists. The set was designed to look like cars they were beating up.

    The song won for Best Country Song and Best Female Country Vocal Performance at the ceremony, which is odd considering it came out in 2005. According to Grammy rules, however, some songs are still eligible for awards if they were released in the preceding eligibility year but "achieved prominence" in the current one.
  • Backstage after winning Best Country Song at the Grammy ceremony, songwriters Josh Kear and Chris Tompkins told Billboard magazine that the song's appeal across the board surprised them. Kear said: "It's like a movie. You've got just enough sex and just enough violence to appeal to both sexes. The fact that they just left it as a straightforward Country record and it worked was a surprise, and pleasantly so."
  • Some Hearts became the best selling solo female Country debut in RIAA history. It also was the highest selling Country album in the US in both 2006 and 2007.
  • Tomkins and Kear told The Boot the story of the song:

    Chris Tompkins: "At the time, Gretchen Wilson was going in to record. After her first record, everybody wanted to have a song on that second record, and I was trying to think of edgy stuff. I never would've thought that Carrie Underwood would record it! I went into my office that morning and began what I'd typed earlier. And without even talking about it, Josh just sang that chorus line, 'Maybe next time, he'll think before he cheats ...' So we just started talking about it from there, how to match that first verse, and started thinking of some quirky stuff like that. And like good songs always do, the song kind of wrote itself from there. Usually a song takes a couple of writing sessions, four or five hours each - and talking and goofing off, having coffee. But this was such a quick write. It took about two hours. It was the first song I wrote in my new house! typing lyrics... not even picking up a guitar or a pen or anything... and I typed up that first verse. I'd just moved into my new house, and Josh had come over, and we were just looking for ideas. I played him."

    Josh Kear: "Chris had called me halfway through a day I actually had off, and said he had a piece of something and wanted me to come over. So I dropped what I was doing and went over. He played me those first few lines, 'Right now, he's prob'ly slow dancing with a bleach-blonde tramp ...' And when he hit the line, 'she can't shoot whiskey,' I was completely hooked! Funny thing is, I used to always say, the first woman that ever gets really pissed at me and is willing to break my car windows and fill my car up with wet concrete is the one I would marry! I used to joke about that for years, and it's nothing more than a joke! But when we were writing this song, I thought, "Wow! If she knew this was going on inside the bar - which was what we already had laid out in that first verse - how would she react to that?" And that's when we thought, let's actually let her get pissed! And the chorus is every bit of that. It's a lot of stuff that most people would say you can't put in a song, but we did it anyway. When we were writing it, we were actually trying to keep it humorous, but when Carrie got hold of it, she just did it so well, and really made it her own. We expected it would be a little more light-hearted, but when we heard it, we thought, wow, she really drove it home! We couldn't be more grateful to Carrie - for just wailin'!"
  • Speaking with CMT, Underwood admitted she almost passed on this song out of fear of a fan backlash. "I remember at that time - because that was right after Idol - we [were] on the road, and then I get this song," she recalled. "I [thought], 'People are going to hate me for singing this song.' They're gonna be like, 'Oh my gosh, we can't listen to her album. She's bad, and I can't let my children listen to this.' Finally I was just like, 'You know what? I like this song. I would turn this song up on the radio, so I'm just gonna go for it.'"
  • The song held the record for the longest ascent to the top ten of the Billboard Hot 100. It took 38 weeks to climb to the top tier in 2006-07. It was eventually surpassed by Glass Animals' "Heat Waves," which took 42 weeks to reach the top ten in 2021.
  • Thanks to this song, Underwood carved out a niche for songs that take down badly behaved boyfriends. Some of her later tunes to incorporate this theme include "Cowboy Casanova," "Two Black Cadillacs" and "Dirty Laundry."
  • The Roman White directed-music video shows Underwood destroying her cheating lover's truck. Her unfaithful partner is played by Atlanta-based model Tabb Shoup.

    The beginning of the video was filmed in and around Printer's Alley in downtown Nashville. Underwood is seen leaving a parking lot brandishing a Louisville Slugger. According to VH1's Pop-Up Video, the singer used a child-sized Louisville Slugger as her small hands looked silly holding the full-sized version.

    The drunk guy who stumbles out in front of Underwood was not an actor; when a real-life inebriated man staggered in front of the country star she simply shoved him out of the way, and Roman White incorporated the footage into the video.
  • The visual won three categories at the 2007 CMT Music Awards: Video of the Year, Female Video of the Year, and Director of the Year.
  • Underwood performed this on Saturday Night Live on March 24, 2007.

Comments: 36

  • Aria from ParisBut who else is here from TikTok- But seriously, this song slaps.
  • Jules from ScotlandIt reminds me so much of Aerosmith's Dream On, and not in a plagiarizing way at all, more as an hommage (Dream On was Glee'd, although not mashed-up) or a sequel (similar to Metallica's Unforgiven triptych). I cannot believe that Underwood performed this song live with Steven Tyler but that they did not come up with a their own mash-up, let alone that nobody posted a fan-made one on Youtube (as of AUG2020). I bought my last CD in 2008, but I'd pay £25 for an symphonic rendering of that on vinyl.
  • Karen from Myown, WorldClick on lyrics and the words say bathroom polo.

    Anyway, I absolutely love this song. Yes, I agree that the double standard applies her in the female's favor, however, I'd like to see a guy do this to his cheating girlfriend. I would applaud him and laugh my little ass off. She'd deserve every bit of it. But now for the fact... guys won't do this. Guys would beat the crap out of the other guy not her car. Girls would destroy his truck because a man loves his truck.
  • Hayley from Not Tellin, HiThis just happened to me so I came hope turned on this song and said screw him!!!
  • Hayley from Not Tellin, HiOkay 1) it's polo meaning crappy cologne 2) who cares and 3) if you don't like the song and what it stands for then what the hell are you doing listening to it, just go and listen to different song! Because no one wants to read your dumbass comments!!!!!
  • Sarah from Surrey, BcIts bathroom polo.
    places have it in men washrooms to despence small samples of mens cologne. ralf laurns men cologne is called polo. thus the bathroom polo.
    the cheep sample of cologne from the small machine in the mens bathroom at the club.
  • Don from Anaheim,This song has always bugged me. I think the singer is a psycho b**** because it is never established in the song whow the guy is or what their relationship is. Have they been married for 20 years or did he buy her a drink once? Besides, what she is talking about doing should get her arrested and thrown into jail for a long time. Horrible, horrible song and story. Sam from Joliet said it best, if a guy did this, he's a criminal because it's a girl, she's some kind of hero. Be careful girls, don't listen to Carrie.
  • Lisa from Milwaukee, Wi, WiKaren from Manchester is right on the money. She puts no feeling into her singing, and loud is NOT necessarily better! Her looks must go a long way
  • Karen from Manchester, NhAm I the only person who sees that the Emperor isn't wearing any clothes? WHAT is the big deal about this bombastic blonde? Yes, technically she's a good singer - she hits the right notes - but she has only 2 volumes: loud and BELLOW! She has no soul to her singing. She is hurting herself, trying to hit those low even sounds painful. It's like the falsetto she hits in "Jesus Take the Wheel": you can actually hear her change from proper "belly" singing to "throat" singing. Someone teach this girl dynamics, and to not attempt to hit notes she simply can't.
  • Jennifer Harris from Grand Blanc, MiI love this song,If Don could drive and if he wasn't legally blind,I'd do the same thing to him if he cheated on me.
  • Courtney from Salt Lake City, UtCologne or polo?! Hmmm...Who gives a f*** this song is absolutely amazing! This is exactly what I would like to do to my ex-boyfriend, but I won't because I couldn't do that to a 69 Chevelle. :)
  • John from Newton Aycliffe, United KingdomRight now, he's probably dabbing on three dollars worth of that bathroom cologne
    are the correct words and this is the chorus

    'That I dug my key into the side of his Pretty little souped up four wheel drive
    Carved my name into his leather seat
    I took a Louisville slugger to both head lights
    Slashed a hole in all four tires
    Maybe next time he'll think before he cheats'
  • Ken from Cambridge, MnYou can do the Double Two or Texas Two step to "Before he Cheats." I did it in Bartlet Illinois at the Cadillac Ranch, and in Waukegan Illinois at Sundance Saloon.
  • Sam from Joliet, IlImagine if this song was a guy singing about trashing his ex-girlfriends car - then he's a stalker! But if it's a girl she's a she-ro!
  • Krisanne from Lexington, MiI love this song. I agree, its not country music, but thats okay. And by the way, Is it "Idug my key into his leather seats" or "Idug my key into his legices"
  • Andrew from Atlanta, GaWhy did the main character of the song fall for the obnoxious and promiscuous redneck with a flashy 4x4 (and a predisposition to use too much cologne) anyway? Terrible song. That's not country music. It's canned pop junk-food-music for the masses.
  • Tim from Hell, Mithis song is about demons fighting over mashed potatoes
  • Kennedy from Redding, CaOMG!!! i love this song.It makes me think about all the other boyfriends i had that cheated on me and it also makes me laugh and i get this image in my mind of me destroing my ex's car...LOL!!! well anyway love this song...keep it up!! love you carrie!!
  • Bev from Sydney Mines, CanadaThis song is totally all about revenge ! ,
    He boyfriend is cheating on her with another girl , you can tell because he's holding the other girl very closely & when carrie walks by he just looks at her & doesn't say a thing !
  • Rachel from Cleveland, AlYou Rock, Carrie!!! I love everything about you and this song has such a strong meaning. Don't EVER change. Besides, you won't have to! Keep rocking my world!!
  • Tukina from Pocatello, IdI've listened to this god awful song about 30000000 times on the radio and I'm pretty sure it's not about revenge. Everything he's doing is PROBABLY. She's doesn't know anything. He's probably in the bar watching the game telling everyone how great his girlfriend is. She doesn't know, she's too busy f*cking up his hick ride. Insecure, psycho women. Also, am I the only one who doesn't care what brand he's putting on in the john?
  • Jailene from K-town, WaPS, I know I'd be repelled by cheap bathroom cologne. I mean, seriously. A: Three dollars worth. I'm assuming that's a lot, and you don't want to smell like you bathed in cologne, cause I know I'm not alone when I say that that makes me want to toss. B:Good cologne or good deodorant, because anything less (or as mentioned before, more) will totally be gross. *Dirt Cheap* deodorant doesn't work, but good deodorant can do a world of good. Anyway. That got more in-depth than I wanted it to be. Lawl. Okay!
  • Jailene from K-town, WaArgh...I really wish I knew whether it was cologne or Polo, and also, the jacket on the CD I got doesn't have the lyrics. Lawl, handy, right?
  • Darrell from EugeneIf anyone so much as comes near my 1995 Alfa Romeo 164 Quadrifoglio or my 1978 Dodge Magnum with a baseball bat and/or a knife, I will tackle them and they will wish that they were never born. If someone vandalizes my girlfriend's Volvo, no great loss. It has over 300,000 miles and Volvo 245DL wagons are everywhere.
  • Sandy from Warsaw, InLook on the cd if you love the song and listen to it you should have the cd just look at the lyrics!!!
  • Sandy from Warsaw, InI have met Carrie Underwood in person and actually its bathroom cologne!!!
  • Lilly from Nsw, United StatesYes it's bathroom polo. You can hear her say "P", and I saw her live, and I had front row seats and she very clearly said polo. Plus it does say that on HER website...
  • Ernie from Hartsdale, NyCarrie is clearly singing "bathroom Polo". Have the CD and listened to the song hundreds of times already. Every lyric sight on the net also has the same lyrics.
  • Tyler from Edmond, Okno michelles right look up the lyrics here and if u still dont belive me look them up on her website...hope this helps
  • Shaylyn from Salem, Oractually sandy is right..
  • Sandy from Warsaw, InThe correct words are "hes probably dabbin on 3 dollars worth of that bathroom cologne". That means hes puttig on cologne to cover up the girls perfume! I love this song it shows that women arent always calm we can be mean also!
  • Michelle from Grand Rapids, MiIt's 'he's probably dabbing on three dollars worth of that bathroom polo'
  • Cooper from Somewhere, Alwhat does she mean by
    "he's prolly livin on three dollars worth of that bathroom polo"????
  • Karen from Canton, NcTotally
  • Tracy from Houston, Txthe way carrie underwood vandalizes that truck is such a awesome part....
see more comments

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