Pontoon (song)

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Single by Little Big Town
from the album Tornado
ReleasedApril 30, 2012 (2012-04-30)
LabelCapitol Nashville
Producer(s)Jay Joyce
Little Big Town singles chronology
"The Reason Why"

"Pontoon" is a song recorded by American country music group Little Big Town. It was released in April 2012 as the first single from their fifth studio album, Tornado.[1] The song – written by Natalie Hemby, Luke Laird and Barry Dean – became the group's first No. 1 single on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart for the week of September 15, 2012. The song won the 2013 Grammy Award for Best Country Duo/Group Performance.[2]


Laird said that the idea for "Pontoon" came about when a publisher asked about a song that he and Hemby wrote for Miranda Lambert called "Fine Tune", but the publisher thought that it was called "Pontoon". After Hemby corrected him, the two thought that they should write a song called "Pontoon".[3]

"Pontoon" is a mid-tempo song about having a party while on a pontoon. The song is in A major, with an A-D-A pattern twice on the verses, and A-D-A-E-A on the chorus. Karen Fairchild's lead vocal ranges from E3 to A4. It has an approximate tempo of 96 beats per minute.[4]

Critical reception[edit]

Billy Dukes of Taste of Country gave the song three and a half stars out of five, writing that "those who invest time to pull apart the layers of this lazy lake song will be rewarded with a new toy upon each listen."[5] Bobby Peacock of Roughstock gave the song four stars out of five, saying that "Karen Fairchild's lead vocal has a heavy reverb effect, which mixes in excellently with the hi-strung guitar, drum loop, organ and[…]her three bandmates' earthy harmonies." He also thought that the lyrics "have a sense of playfulness that make the mere act of riding on a pontoon sound like a blast."[6] Dan Milliken of Country Universe gave the song a C+ grade, writing that the "lyrics are so dull that, when paired with the weird reverb on Karen Fairchild’s vocal, they start to sound like a diary of seasickness."[7]

The song was awarded with 2012 Single Of The Year by the Country Music Association[8] and 2013 Grammy Award for Best Country Duo/Group Performance.

Music video[edit]

The music video was directed by Declan Whitebloom and premiered in May 2012.[9] It was filmed at Percy Priest Lake in Nashville, Tennessee.[10]

Chart performance[edit]

"Pontoon" debuted at number 51 on the U.S. Billboard Hot Country Songs chart for the week of May 19, 2012.[11] For the week of September 15, 2012, "Pontoon" became Little Big Town's first number one hit. As of June 2016 the song has sold 2.66 million copies in the United States.[12]

Charts and certifications[edit]



  1. ^ "Little Big Town, 'Pontoon' to Hit Radio April 30". The Boot. April 10, 2012. Retrieved June 25, 2012.
  2. ^ "Grammy Awards 2013: Major Nominees List". Billboard. Retrieved 7 December 2012.
  3. ^ Conaway, Alanna (May 4, 2012). "Little Big Town, 'Pontoon' – Lyrics Uncovered". Taste of Country. Retrieved June 25, 2012.
  4. ^ "'Pontoon' sheet music". MusicNotes.com. Retrieved 8 September 2012.
  5. ^ Dukes, Billy (April 17, 2012). "Little Big Town, 'Pontoon' – Song Review". Taste of Country. Retrieved June 25, 2012.
  6. ^ Peacock, Bobby (June 4, 2012). "Single Review: Little Big Town - "Pontoon"". Roughstock. Archived from the original on July 8, 2012. Retrieved June 25, 2012.
  7. ^ Milliken, Dan (April 29, 2012). "Single Review: Little Big Town, "Pontoon"". Country Universe. Retrieved June 25, 2012.
  8. ^ "CMA Awards Database". Country Music Association. Archived from the original on 2013-04-24. Retrieved 11/03/2012. Check date values in: |access-date= (help)
  9. ^ "CMT : Videos : Little Big Town : Pontoon". Country Music Television. Retrieved May 26, 2012.
  10. ^ Conaway, Alanna (May 31, 2012). "Little Big Town Party on Their 'Pontoon' in New Music Video". Taste of Country. Retrieved June 25, 2012.
  11. ^ Morris, Edward (May 12, 2012). "Carrie Underwood Blows Into No. 1 Album Spot with Blown Away". Country Music Television. Retrieved June 25, 2012.
  12. ^ a b "Nielsen SoundScan charts – Digital Songs – Week Ending: 06/06/2016" (PDF). Nielsen SoundScan. Archived from the original (PDF) on July 5, 2016.
  13. ^ "Little Big Town Chart History (Canadian Hot 100)". Billboard.
  14. ^ "Little Big Town Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard.
  15. ^ "Little Big Town Chart History (Hot Country Songs)". Billboard.
  16. ^ "Best of 2012 - Hot 100 Songs". Billboard.com. Retrieved 2012-12-14.
  17. ^ "Best of 2012: Country Songs". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. 2012. Retrieved December 14, 2012.
  18. ^ "Canadian single certifications – Little Big Town – Pontoon". Music Canada. Retrieved January 16, 2013.
  19. ^ "American single certifications – Little Big Town – Pontoon". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved August 30, 2012.