Music

Country Rewind: Reba McEntire Shines on Matraca Berg Co-Write 'The Last One to Know'

The groundwork of Reba McEntire's current role as a living legend began back in the '80s when she was one of mainstream country music's strongest neo-traditionalist voices. For proof that McEntire's hits back then honored country music storytelling with the same fervor as those of Randy Travis or Ricky Skaggs, look no further than the title track from the 1987 studio album The Last One to Know.

The album's lead single and title track's Billboard chart-topping success accomplished more than furthering the momentum McEntire first earned with the classic country albums My Kind of Country (1984) and Whoever's in New England (1986). The plaintive, poetic love song introduced a broader audience to Matraca Berg, the co-writer of a prior hit in T.G. Sheppard and Karen Brooks' 1983 no. 1 "Faking Love" and an impressive list of future hits that includes Trisha Yearwood's "Wrong Side of Memphis," Deana Carter's "Strawberry Wine" and Martina McBride's "Wild Angels." Berg co-wrote "The Last One to Know" with Jane Mariash.

Read More: Reba McEntire Songs: Her 15 Best Tracks, Ranked

As for the rest of the album, McEntire and her co-producer Jimmy Bowen's vision included future Holly Dunn album cut "Just Across the Rio Grande" and an improved version of former Lee Greenwood title track "Love Will Find Its Way to You."

'The Last One to Know' Lyrics:

I didn't see the fire burn to ashes
Couldn't feel the winds of change
I was lost inside the passion
Blinded by a memory of a flame
 
Guess I should of felt it when you touched me
Should of seen it in your eyes
I believed you really loved me
Why can't I believe you said goodbye

Why is the last one to know
The first one to cry and the last to let go
Why is the one left behind the one left alone
With no one to hold
The last one to know

Now it would be easier to face the morning
If you were holding me tonight
But you left me without a warning
Holding on to a heartache while she's holding you tight

Why is the last one to know
The first one to cry and the last to let go
Why is the one left behind the one left alone
With no one to hold
The last one to know

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Country Rewind: Reba McEntire Shines on Matraca Berg Co-Write 'The Last One to Know'