“Don’t Start Now” by Dua Lipa
According to Dua Lipa’s own analysis, “Don’t Start Now” is about transitioning from ‘one chapter of her life into another’. Basically she is going through a monumental change. And this movement is highlighted by her “not allowing anyone to get in the way”. But more to the point, based on the lyrical content of the song, that “anyone” would actually be her ex-boyfriend.
And in that regard there are a number of different themes operating throughout. One is an idea which many other female pop singers have also been making songs about recently, which is the songstress being better off without her ex. Then there’s also another one that sort of has been popping up lately.
That is now that the singer’s ex sees her chilling without him, and he gets bitter as a result. And in some way, shape or form he must’ve made Dua aware of such, as the title is a summation of her overall response to his anxiety. And what she is telling him is “don’t start now”.
And as stated in the chorus, this statement is actually based on the idea of her ex never adequately caring about her in the first place. So Lipa is like he shouldn’t start acting like he cares now that he’s jealous – for instance when he sees her “dancing with somebody” else.
And we discover in the second verse why she is not keen on the idea of being sympathetic to her ex. In fact Dua insinuates that he was actually the one who called off their relationship. And her description of the whole association comes off as if it was toxic, at least from her perspective. Indeed the singer is able to brag that not only is life better without dude, but she was able to get over him so quickly that even she’s amazed.
So going back to Dua’s original description of this song, she is indeed celebrating a transformative change in her life. But such is not the subject which the majority of the lyrics are based on. Rather in all bluntness, she is telling her jelly ex-boyfriend to stay the hell away from her.
Or stated conclusively, the aforementioned transformation has resulted in her becoming a happier person. And in the midst of such, she has realized that it was her ex who was actually sitting on her happiness. So now that Lipa is free of him, she is totally uninterested in entertaining the idea of getting re-involved.
Release Date of “Don’t Start Now”
Later Warner Bros. Records officially released the tune as the lead single from Dua’s sophomore album on 31 October 2019. And as of that date the project itself is tentatively titled “Future Nostalgia”.
Writing and Production of “Don’t Start Now”
This track was produced by Ian Kirkpatrick, who worked on a lot of Dua Lipa’s songs in the past, including perhaps her biggest hit to date, “New Rules” (2017).
Kirkpatrick also contributed to the lyrical composition of this song. He did so along with Dua Lipa. Songwriter Caroline Ailin along with Emily Warren.
Are the lyrics autobiographical?
If this track is indeed based on one a real-life romance that Dua Lipa was a part of, it would have logically been when she was involved with Isaac Carew. And who is Isaac Carew? He is a celebrity chef whom Dua dated from 2015 to 2019. In fact they just split up in June of 2019.
And it is reported that she actually started dating her current beau (as of the release of this song), an American model by the name of Anwar Haddi, during that selfsame month.
This song was a huge success on the international charts. For example, in both the United States and UK, it reached a peak position of #2. It went on to give Lipa a top-10 hit in several other countries, including these:
As of 2021, this Dua Lipa hit has sold over 5 million copies in both UK and US. This makes it one of the most successful releases of the year 2019.
“Don’t Start Now” receives 3 Grammy Nominations
At the 2021 Grammys, “Don’t Start Now” happened to be one of the most nominated songs of the awards night. It received approximately 3 nominations in the following categories:
- “Best Pop Solo Performance”
- “Record of the Year”
- “Song of the Year”
In the latter two categories, it was nominated along with the following songs: