London born singer-songwriter Dua Lipa released “Don’t Start Now” to critical acclaim, storming the charts at a near number 1 spot in multiple countries. It’s easy to be distracted by the funky disco era beats on the track, but what is the story behind the lyrics?
The lyrics of Dua Lipa’s “Don’t Start Now” is about an ex from a previous relationship. The narrative of the song is that the ex has come back, but she has moved on and is no longer interested.
Although that’s what the lyrics are about on the surface, the purpose of the track and the style of music that Lipa went with are also indicative of her own musical journey and the creative direction she decided to take.
The Writing Process
Two years after the chart-topping success of “New Rules” had catapulted Lipa into the mainstream, with all of the trappings of celebrity and fame that come with it, she found herself at a crossroads with her music.
Where she had once had a limited team of people to select from to assist her in the production and the songwriting, her newfound stardom brought with it a host of new talent ready to throw themselves at the singer.
Still comparatively young in the music industry, Lipa’s preferred producer to work with, Ian Kirkpatrick, noted that she was experiencing a significant amount of stress from the newfound attention that she was receiving from people wishing to be a part of the new upcoming album.
Although she was struggling, Lipa wished to be a part of every step during the creative process for the music on the new album. One that she was set on was a disco-style sound but wasn’t entirely sure how far to go with it.
The fresh new take on the classic disco genre was exactly what Lipa was looking for, however. The music, produced by Kirkpatrick and Warren when they attended a “weird disco night,” immediately grabbed the singer who began working on the lyrics together with her team.
Meaning Behind the Song
Lyrically it’s clear what the meaning behind the song is and who it was directed at. With lines like “So moved on, it’s scary,” and “Don’t start caring about me now,” it’s clear that Lipa is sending out a definitive message that whomever she was hung up on, she is more than over.
Almost all of the lyrics in the song address this theme, the idea that Lipa has grown from the relationship that she was in and is now no longer affected by it in the way that she once was. However, another theme that runs beneath the song is the fact that she has moved on as a person as well.
In finding her own style and her own voice, Lipa has also found a way to move on from her past self both emotionally and creatively, moving on to a new chapter in her life. Lipa even says it herself in an interview, describing it as going “Into a new era with a new sound”.
With highly relatable lyrics, Lipa’s clearly identifiable signature voice and a meticulously crafted pop masterpiece of a track supporting the vocals, “Don’t Start Now” seemed destined for success right from the get-go.
Don’t Start Now released to critical acclaim, seizing multiple top 10 positions across the world. Although in her native country of the UK it was held off from the number one spot by fierce contender “Dance Monkey”, that wouldn’t stop it from remaining on the charts for a record-breaking 25 weeks.
Not only was it the longest that a song has stayed in the charts without a number one spot, but that 25-week period was in fact the longest that a single by a female British artist had managed to stay in the top 10.
That sort of longevity would be indicative of how well-loved the song was, with many critics noting that they felt Lipa had finally found the perfect sound, noting that the music complemented her voice perfectly.
With her second chart success, Lipa is proving herself more and more to be a potential future superstar, with relatable lyrics and a keen ear for what does and does not work for her stylistically.