COUNTRY music sTARS
COUNTRY music sTARS
COUNTRY music sTARS
Mason Crest Miami
Mason Crest PO Box 221876 Hollywood, FL 33022 (866) MCP-BOOK (toll-free) www.masoncrest.com
Copyright © 2023 by Mason Crest, an imprint of National Highlights, Inc. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, taping, or any information storage and retrieval system, without permission from the publisher. First printing 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 ISBN (hardback) 978-1-4222-4487-6 ISBN (series) 978-1-4222-4486-9 ISBN (ebook) 978-1-4222-7322-7 Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data Names: Stewart, Kate, 1978-author. Title: Carrie Underwood / Kate Stewart. Description: Broomall : Mason Crest, 2023. | Series: Country music stars | Includes bibliographical references and index. Identifiers: LCCN 2019053153 | ISBN 9781422244876 (hardback) | ISBN 9781422273227 (ebook) Subjects: LCSH: Underwood, Carrie, 1983–Juvenile literature. | Country musicians–United States–Biography–Juvenile literature. | Singers–United States–Biography–Juvenile literature. Classification: LCC ML3930.U53 S74 2020 | DDC 782.421642092 [B]–dc23
LC record available at https://lccn.loc.gov/2019053153 Developed and Produced by National Highlights, Inc. Editor: Andrew Luke Production: Crafted Content, LLC
CHAPTER 1: A STAR IS BORN
CHAPTER 2: GREATEST MOMENTS
CHAPTER 3: BEHIND THE CURTAIN
CHAPTER 4: BRAND CARRIE UNDERWOOD
CHAPTER 5: MODERN MEGASTAR
SERIES GLOSSARY OF KEY TERMS
AUTHOR BIOGRAPHY, PHOTO CREDITS & EDUCATIONAL VIDEO LINKS
Key Icons to Look For
WORDS TO UNDERSTAND: These words, with their easy-to-understand definitions, will increase readers’ understanding of the text while building vocabulary skills.
EDUCATIONAL VIDEOS: Readers can view videos by scanning our QR codes, providing themwith additional educational content to supplement the text. SIDEBARS: This boxed material within the main text allows readers to build knowledge, gain insights, explore possibilities, and broaden their perspectives by weaving together additional information to provide realistic and holistic perspectives.
TEXT-DEPENDENT QUESTIONS: These questions send the reader back to the text for more careful attention to the evidence presented there.
RESEARCH PROJECTS: Readers are pointed toward areas of further inquiry connected to each chapter. Suggestions are provided for projects that encourage deeper research and analysis. SERIES GLOSSARY OF KEY TERMS: This back-of-the-book glossary contains terminology used throughout this series.Words found here increase the reader’s ability to read and comprehend higher-level books and articles in this field.
a star is born BREAKTHROUGH
a star is born BREAKTHROUGH
WORDS TO UNDERSTAND amateur —one who engages in a pursuit, study, science, or sport as a pastime rather than as a profession demo —a recording intended to show off a song or performer to a record producer idyllic —pleasing or picturesque in natural simplicity salutatorian —the student usually having the second highest rank in a graduating class who delivers the salutatory address at the commencement exercises
Following her big win on season four of American Idol , Underwood toured the country performing with her fellow Idol contestants. The tour stopped in Oklahoma, where she was in high demand for interviews with the local press as the hometown girl.
“I’ve definitely had some luck on my side but there’s been a whole lot of hard work too. I got my opportunity and I took it.”
Underwood recognized the opportunity winning the show had given her and she ran with it. Just three weeks after the Idol finale, her single “InsideYour Heaven” was released. It was the first single by a country artist to ever debut at the top spot on Billboard’s Hot 100 chart. This foreshadowed the release of her debut full-length album in November 2005. Entitled Some Hearts , Underwood’s album took the country by storm. Not only did it come in at the top of the Billboard country album chart, it also had the best first week of any country album since the advent of electronic sales tracking. By the end of 2006, Some Hearts was the best-selling album of any kind in the entire country. The fourth single “Before He Cheats” was released
a star is born
Underwood’s debut album, Some Hearts, was the Top
Country Album on Billboard for both 2006 and 2007.
in 2006 and became the first multi-platinum country single ever. That means that song alone sold more than 4 million copies in that year. Some Hearts went on to produce a total of three Number 1 country singles and was Billboard’s Top Country Album in both 2006 and 2007. It has sold more than 8 million copies, making it one of the top 100 selling albums of all time. Underwood was honored greatly for its success, winning two Grammy Awards for Best Female Country Vocal Performance in 2007 and again in 2008 and another Grammy for Best New Artist in 2007. She also picked up an Academy of Country Music (ACM) Award in 2006 and a Country Music Association Award (CMA) in 2007 for the singles “Jesus, Take the Wheel” and “Before He Cheats,” respectively. In 2006, Underwood embarked on a six-month live tour to promote Some Hearts , billed simply as Carrie Underwood: Live in Concert. The tour made 41 stops in the United States and one in Canada. In a matter of weeks, Underwood went from being an unknown country girl from a small rural town to one of the biggest stars in the country, selling out concerts from coast-to-coast. It was beyond anything she could have dreamed about just a few months earlier. HOME SWEET CHECOTAH “Where sixty-nine meets forty, there’s a single-stoplight town,” begin the lyrics to Underwood’s hit song, “I Ain’t in Checotah Anymore,” which appeared near the end of Some Hearts . Her roots were clearly on her mind as she wrote that song. Carrie Underwood was born on March 10, 1983, in Muskogee, Oklahoma. Her parents, Mike and Carole, owned a small farm just south of Checotah and already had two daughters, Shanna and Stephanie, who were thirteen and ten years older than Underwood. Carole taught at Checotah’s only elementary school, and Mike worked at a paper mill. The town had about 3,500 residents, and Underwood remembered it as a perfect example of small-town America. It was so small, in fact, that Underwood’s mother was her teacher at Marshall Elementary. Underwood’s first love was animals, and she loved taking care of the cows.
a star is born
The Pre-Statehood Commercial District in Muskogee, Oklahoma, the town where Underwood was born in 1983.
“It was the coolest thing ever. I just remember thinking, ‘Oh my gosh. This is a little calf and I’m bottle feeding [it].’ ”
When she first really understood the process of how her own family’s cattle ended up on the dinner table, she stopped eating beef, and then eventually, all meat. Her parents were upset when she first made this decision, when she was around age thirteen, and it took them some time to get used to it and accept it. Becoming a vegetarian has been a lifelong commitment for Underwood, as she still refuses to eat meat. Growing up, Underwood’s grandparents lived just down the street and they taught her about giving back. They started a Christmas tradition where the whole family helped package up fruit and take it to nursing
Faith Hill is the country star that inspired Underwood to start performing live after Underwood attended her concert in 1993.
a star is born a star is born
home residents. They sang Christmas carols to elderly residents who were unable to be with family on the holiday. Underwood’s grandfather remembered her as a well-behaved child, who was mostly quiet, except when she was singing. Underwood started singing at age three at the First Free Will Baptist Church that her family attended, and everyone noticed how good she was. Underwood’s elementary school music teacher, Kathy Cooper, described the moment when she thought Underwood was ready to step up and sing a solo, “I wanted to show her off, so I had her sing ‘Somewhere Out There’ from the movie An American Tail . She was just so good and wasn’t scared at all. I went and told her mom, ‘Carole, she’s going to be good if she stays with it.’” She went on to be a featured singer at many school and local events. When she was ten years old, Underwood went to her first county music concert at the Oklahoma State Fair. She sawAlan Jackson and one of her heroes, Faith Hill. Hill’s performance inspired Underwood to begin singing at talent shows and other events around the state of Oklahoma. Her mother was very supportive and always drove her and made costumes to match her cowboy boots. She never won any of these contests, which many fans would later find surprising, but her mom said that’s howUnderwood learned how to lose gracefully. She was diagnosed with Attention Deficit Disorder at age five and started taking medication for it that she still uses today. Despite what seemed like an idyllic , charmed childhood, Underwood struggled through some personal problems and pushed past them to achieve her goals. NASHVILLE DREAMS DASHED When she was fourteen in 1997, Underwood had the opportunity to meet with music producers in Nashville. Capitol Records brought her there to record a demo , hoping she’d become their next teen country star. While she was there, she also sang at Tootsie’s Orchid Lounge, a honky-tonk across from the Ryman Auditorium.
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