Top 40 Singles of 2008: Carrie Underwood - "Just A Dream" (#12)

Carrie Underwood has certainly had a charmed career so far with over 10 million albums sold and seven consecutive #1 singles so far in career.  With that kind of track record, it should come as no surprise that she lands a song on our year-end 'Best Singles' list.

More than any genre, Country music has seen its fair share of new artists get their start on Fox TV's American Idol.  While some have seen their careers come and go quickly, Country radio and the industry in general have accepted these 'rags to riches' TV stars more than any other genre and Carrie Underwood is undoubtedly the most successful of them.  With nearly 10 million albums sold, the singer has scored a remarkable seven number one singles from her first two albums, a feat no other artist has done.  One of those singles, "Just A Dream," was so good that the Hillary Lindsey, Gordie Sampson and Steve McEwan co-write was one of 2008's best singles. 

Few songs capture the raw emotion of “Just A Dream”, a song which finds Underwood touching on a heavy subject that's on the minds of many Americans, particularly military families. The song is about losing a spouse to war, and the emotions of going through the military funeral.  Underwood, from the devastated young widow’s perspective, handles this especially sensitive topic with a touch of class and grace.  Mark Bright's production, which sometimes can get in the way of the lyrics, is understaded here and only enhances Underwood's world-class vocal. Her voice is so emotional that it captures the gravity of the situation, and the music video compounds that by showing her character with the significant other for the final time. Hopefully, Underwood will record more of these songs and less of the shreiking-diva-like songs in the future.